Saturday, August 29, 2009

Moms and Babies

I heard there were baby tigers at the zoo. I took Derek and I was so excited to see them. I remember going to the Detroit Zoo when I was little. I remember when the baby tigers were there. I remember being able to see them. They were climbing all over their mom, and chewing on her ears and swatting at her tail...And I remember being worried
when she suddenly jumped up and freaked out when a group of noisy and stupid boys came along. She began pacing back and forth, growling...looking like she was perfectly capable of not only jumping the moat that surrounded her enclosure, but the fence as well. Fearless and ready to do whatever was necessary to protect her babies. Staring down those boys who very respectfully and sheepishly backed away. Don't mess with a mother tiger. And don't mess with her cubs. Zoos have changed since I was a little girl. I believe for the better. Animals are more protected, and understood. So I am sorry to say that we did not get a good look at the tiger cubs, or the mother. She has the privacy and the security that she needs and deserves for her babies. The Hogle Zoo has really improved over the years. And I enjoy it much more than I used to. I don't feel as sorry for the animals. The Highland Cats area is especially Jungle-like. The animals have a large and beautiful area to live in...with hiding places, water ponds, trees, grass, caves and privacy when they want it. So the tigers, and the snow leopard can be the mothers they need to be without having to worry so much about their cubs. And they are good mothers.

By a very interesting contrast, we ended up going to the zoo playground before we left. And I observed a very interesting dynamic that I have witnessed before from a very complicated species. The human mother. While it would appear that someone who would take their child to the zoo in the first place would seem to be a good parent, I saw a few things that would suggest the opposite. Mothers who are morons. A group of moms were talking while the kids were playing. Good for everyone, right? So a little girl runs over, excited to see a few groundhogs poking up from the groundhog exhibit that is next to the playground. She is so excited..."Mom! Mom! Look! It's a little groundhog! Mom! Mom! Look at the groundhog Mom! Mom! Mom! Mom! Look! Mom, do you see it mom?!!! Mom! Mom!"....Sad...but the mom didn't stop talking to her friends for even a minute to see what her daughter was excited about. The girl tried a few more times to get her mom's attention. Then finally gave up. She walked away and I felt horrible for her! I just can't believe it! This is your little kid excited about a groundhog! When kids are little, everything is wonderful and exciting and magical, and then, overnight, its not. It made me mad. And it makes me mad that there are so many really amazing moms in the world who can't get pregnant or who have life threatening illnesses, and the idiots are the ones raising the future! The human race is doomed. At least the Tigers have got it right. Their babies are the very most important things in the world. They are not distracted by stupid things. Nothing comes before the care and protection of their offspring. We can learn a lot from the tigers.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

The Giving One...(And I don't mean me)

The first miracle happened when I went to get Pizza for the kids that were at my house that day. Ellen had a rough chemo week, and I was going to get cheap 5$ pepperoni pizzas for the kids. Her little boy Spencer, who is like 7, asked me if we could get Hawaiian. I told him that we were just going to have pepperoni because it is only $5. He felt bad, but I figured he would get over it and be fine. It's just pizza. But he was worried about his mom, and all the way to the pizza place I was thinking, I just should have ordered the Hawaiian...his mom has cancer! But now I didn't have 20 min. to wait while they threw a Hawaiian together for me....So I got to the Pizza place and asked for the pizza, then the guy behind the counter yells at me "Hey, I have this extra you want it?" I started crying in the pizza place. I came home and of course Spencer was thrilled.

Miracle number 2 I heard about while collecting funds for Ellen's stove that died. Ellen never complained, or asked anyone for it. But we all decided to replace it for her. A sweet lady I know came over and told me that a few years ago, she let a family she knew stay at her home for a few weeks. After the family left, she went up to clean the house a little, and found an envelope on the table with $100 in it. She was furious and called the family chastising them for leaving money. The family insisted. So this sweet lady, slightly annoyed, dropped the $100 bill in her jewelery box, and it has been there for years...and then she pulled it out and handed it to me for Ellen.

Miracle number 3 is the obvious one that so many people helped to create. A little plea for a new stove on facebook, that I figured would result in maybe $500 came in at 4 times that much. Long time friends who helped me feel like it was okay to ask for help in this way, large donations coming from people who made me swear I would never reveal the amount they were donating, and sweet friends telling me this meant far more to them than any pedicure or an evening out. Friends, giving what they can, others offering service with the placement of appliances. Strangers asking how they can help, dear friends from South and Central America asking if they needed to send dollars, or if pesos were okay. Prayers and good wishes being sent from all over the world for Ellen. And a lot of them are getting through. Resulting in not only a new stove, but a new washer and dryer, which were also needed, a wii game and battery pack, and quite a bit left over for school shopping and whatever else they need. Ellen still does not know who is responsible for this. All she knows is that a lot of people care. Miracle number 4 is more of a revelation than a miracle. How one of the most evil and sadistic forces in the world, cancer, can be overcome on many levels. First, because of the amazing Doctors and Scientists who have done so much to combat this sinister disease and can save and help so many. They continue to fight it and study it and defeat it. And when they can't, and it moves through the world on it's course of utter destruction of the human body and tries to chip away at our spirits, and destroy all of our hope, THERE WILL COME a ray of light, in some manner, whether through Angels, or Doctors, or men, and no one can deny the force of good that will manifest itself, somehow, some way, so that we can go on. If we can just maintain the tiniest amount of faith, we will know that the universe is unfolding as it should. And while we are powerless against some of the things that happen to us in this life, how we deal with those things is completely up to us. I know there is a God and that he lives and he is good. I may not understand everything that happens in this life. And there are things that make me just plain mad. But I have witnessed to many miracles throughout my life to ever deny his existence, or his love for us.

Awhile ago, Ellen mentioned that she doesn't like being on the receiving end. And that is true. She is a mom who loves her kids and has taught them so much. She loves being involved in their lives and she does so much to help others. She is a good friend. A wonderful wife and an amazing mother. What she doesn't realize is that what she has given us, to see her courage, to feel her spirit, and to recognize that she has brought out the good in so many of us...She is on the giving end...and what she has given all of worth far more than a few appliances. She has given us hope, charity, love, the face of pure evil. She is the one doing the giving. And we are ALL indebted to her.

(I hesitate to post this, because THIS IS NOT IN ANY WAY ABOUT ME. This is just for Ellen. I am not responsible for these miracles. I don't want any feedback for me. Please comment just about Ellen on this post. I decided to write about it because I have seen these miracles, and everyone needs to know about them. Again, this is not about me.)

Monday, August 10, 2009


My friend Ellen just went through a very difficult round of chemotherapy and surgery to have her bladder removed for bladder cancer. She got her post op results today...not good. It's funny how nothing really seems very important any more. She has 4 small children. I am praying for a miracle for her. Miracles do happen...