Friday, June 20, 2008

Driven to Fun

Two twin-size egg crate cushions are pushed together on the floor, topped by three sleeping bags and a 6, 9, and 12 year old.

Little Warrior's hospital bed has been lowered as far as it will go and shoved against the couch/cot thingy they give for parents. Together, it makes a somewhat uneven somewhat Queen size bed.

It's been a fun party. Barbeque and cupcakes, crepe paper streamers and balloons from a friend. Movies. Microwave popcorn and cokes.

And music! I got my coveted guitar and it's better than I imagined. Huh. I didn't realize how much my old guitar, well, sucked. We are not by any stretch of the imagination the Von Trapps, but we have sung together, Itsy Bitsy Spider and Down by the Bay and Little Boxes. Country Roads. Don't Worry Be Happy. Across the Universe.

And Hallelujah.

The children gave us their presents, homemade cards they each spent a lot of time on. They've enjoyed this. It's a party. For the most part, anyway. The Boy is past the age of innocence, in this world. He can't help but see where we are. The IV Pole. He was having a hard time and took a long walk with his Dad. Lated, he teared up and he and I went for a walk and talk.

"We're having a slumber party ... in a hospital! Because LW has cancer!" he said, anguished.

So we talked. And I told him that I frequently feel like crying. So I let myself feel it, and move on. "We have to be here," I tell him. "So which is better? To just be here, or to have a slumber party here?"

He agrees that having a party is the way to go.

I think that in addition to having special talents, we are born with things we are driven to do. Things we are compelled to do. Much to my mother's dismay, the compulsion to do things like clean my house or mop my floors is not something I was born with.

I was born with a compulsion to make fun. Thankfully, I found a mate with the same compulsion. And so, to the head shaking of our parents and more responsible siblings, we have always found ways to have fun. It is fitting that we have the same birthday. (Our first married birthday, our gift to each other was to go buy a Nintendo with our carefully saved dollars.)

Tonight, looking around the room at the streamers, the guitar, the almost-sleeping children, I'm not thinking about the undone projects, the laundry waiting at home. I'm thinking that maybe the compulsion to make fun is important, too. And I'm grateful I have it.


Berrysmom said...

Never let that head-shaking get to you. Just ask yourself, "Hmmm, does the world need more grumpy people or more joyful people?"

So there you go. Happy birthday and may there be many, many more among all of you!

ms. kitty said...

Amen, Sister Judy. Live it up, LE!

jbgrinch said...

I have always thought of my guitars and banjo and even my concertinas as gifts that keep on giving. The music in our house is part of the joy here. We are off to the OLD SONGS folk fest in Albany NY. It is my gift to the rest of my family. Achance for my kids to learn to love music. My your guitar give your kids the gift of music for many years to come.

Nancy said...

Rock on! I need more people like you in my life. People who MAKE fun. I just clean. :(

Hang in there...

kim said...

Oh cool. My partner and I have the same birthday also (same year too). Happy Birthday to you both, and may the next one be joyous and in a better place than the hospital.