The So-Far-So-Great Carousel of Teen Children

Record player spins
Round and round.
The needle searches
Then falls into emotional groove
Playing earthy melodies
Textured by a hint of scratch.
A familiar carousel
Same old story
Riddled with tightly wound
Hand wrung butterflies
Fluttering nervously
Living on sips of
Negative thoughts intricately woven
With the thread of
Second guesses, self doubt.

Thank goodness the souls
Of my children feel more free
To spread out wide in themselves.
Comfortable wingspans
Of identity guide them
To explore life,
Have friends,
Enjoy high school.

Somehow, many of those things
Eluded me and still do.
We wish better for our children.

When “so-far-so great”
Appears to be their songs,
Be happy for them.
Go with the beat.


Gratitude, a Serious, not Casual Matter, Especially on Run Days

Training for a half marathon
In October has brought me
These things to be grateful for, so far.

– Falling asleep within 2 minutes
Of head-to-pillow contact

– Sleeping so hard at night

– Ibuprofen to soothe
Knee inflammation and dull pain

– Being part of a larger community
Training and planning to run
Rock and Roll half marathon
With me,
Even if I don’t know
These people yet.
They are still in this
Together with me.

– Developing endurance and strength
So that running 4.5 miles
Does not feel as big of a deal
As it was when I began running
A month ago.

I Ran 8+ miles today
For the first time
With about 5 left to train.
Slowly but surely,
I’ve left the ranks of a
Once-around-the-2.5-mile-park trail,
Casual runner
To becone someone in training
For a longer race.

– Seeing positive body changes
As I begin to sport
The outline of legs
Just short of amazing–
Quads and calves rippling
In sunlight with muscled use.

– Having the health stay with me,
So far so good,
To make weekly incremental
Mile increases possible
Though my knees question
My comings and goings.

– Having the slow and steady
Determination to get out of bed,
Take ibuprofen,
Lace up my running shoes and
To run farther than I ever have,
Three days a week.

– Having a teenage son who is
Willing to run the race too
And who trains with me.

– Having sufficient energy, spirit
And space in my life
To undertake this new challenge,
Mile by mile.