Friday, August 11, 2017

BABY BOY...

On this day, thirty two years ago,
at this time of the morning, I had begun
early labor and knew that this day
would be my first baby's first birthday.
I had awakened at 4 Am knowing this
discomfort was the real thing.
I didn't awaken his Dad, I wanted to be up
and spend a few hours with myself because
after that morning, life as I knew it would be changed.
I was right, of course, but I had no clue just
how much.
I decided it was time for the hospital at about noon
and the Baby boy was born at 3:45pm after
a very quick and easy labor.
On that day, I began wearing my "heart on my sleeve".
He was beautiful and perfect in every way.
It took me days to realize he was ours and
I would get to take him home and keep him.
I was excited and scared at the same time.
Although I had many young nieces and nephews
and knew lots about babies, this one,
I knew would teach me lots and that he did.
He taught me that a sleeping baby is one
you don't mess with.
He taught me that a smile could change
the outlook of a day, a week, a year.
He taught me that I would now view world problem
with him in my mind.
He taught me this and so much more in the span of days.
I remember the day he first smiled at me with 
recognition, a real smile, not one of the gassy ones
of before. 
I was standing at the sink of our mobile home,
holding him and trying to wash a few dishes at the same time.
I probably was humming or singing when I realized
he was staring into my face.
I looked down to see this beautiful child give me
the biggest, toothless, cheesy grin.
My knees became a little week and
I had to sit down at the beauty of it.
On this morning, I can see BB reading this and
rolling his eyes thinking "She is so dramatic"
yet the feelings surrounding that first smile has
carried me through lots.
I am so very proud of this child.
At the young age of 32
he has over 10 years with Chevron,
he and his Kd have a home they planned themselves,
three beautiful little girls who adore them,
a hard working young man who likes doing for others.
He loves hunting fishing, anything in the "outside"
Nothing melts me more than watching him interact
with his little ones, A hands on Dad, makes me proud
to be his Momma.
Happy Birthday, my first born, my only son,
Know that in a world that sometimes seems
unfair or complicated, I always, always
stand in your corner, cheering you on.
"My life, would suck without you in it"





Tuesday, August 8, 2017

54????? IT CANNOT BE!

Today, 54 years ago today, I was born....
hard to believe...the body says it is true, the mind, the heart?
Well it has a completely different conception.
WAAYYYYY back on this day in 1963, I was born to
older parents, Freddie Collins, 45 years old and
Minta Collins, 43. Who in the heck has babies at that age?
Yet I was far from their first, the baby of 7 other children,
11 pregnancies. My sister, C was only two years older than me
so its not like I was that big of a surprise,
The surprise to me as an adult, my oldest sister, Simone
Taunt Mone to most, is 24 years older than me.
I was showered and spoiled to the brim with love and
attention. If being born the baby and the last were not enough,
to have found out I had an incurable cancer at 5 
only added to the attention.
I remember lots from those days, probably more
than most 5 year old should.
I must have been a firecracker even way back then
because no incurable cancer could take my life.
Yet, in a way it did.
It took my 5 year old frail, quiet life
and made me a vocal little spitfire full of
quirkiness. Even at a young age as that
I knew I was one of the lucky ones.
Today, still I see people passing and suffering
from the dreaded C and while my heart cries
for them all, I know I was spared for a reason.
I am loud and vocal, opinionated but kind.
I dance in the aisles, sing whether there is music or not.
I was blessed to have two children when I was told there would be
none and put all I had into being their Mom.
I was far from perfect, still am, but every EVERY 
decision I ever made while Mothering them was
with their best interest in my heart.
When I found my 30 year marriage coming to an end
I knew it would not be the end of me.
I mean in no way to say anything negative to my 
ex, he was financially, the one who made it possible
to be the Momma I wanted to be.
We have both found our way to a happier life.
I never thought at 54 I could find my way to be
 a person I like most always.
Yes, the treatment that saved my life back in 1968 
plays havoc on my body, in no way am I bitter as
the ultimatum would have been death.
I am now a person whom I like and love most days.
I am a person who wants and hopes I bring joy to 
those lives I touch. It is my calling, it is why I have beat
the odds given to me so very long ago.
So to all who love me, call me Mom, sister, lover, friend,
Aunt,  Nannie, Mumsie, Lil, I say thank you on this fine
54th birthday
THANK YOU  for allowing me to be part of your lives
and I hope I have made some sort of difference in yours.
Every years since my kiddo's are young and asked me,
"Mommy what do you want for your birthday, xmas, etc..."
The answer has always been a love letter.
There is nothing in this life I need materialistic,
well the lottery would be nice, but that is a separate blog.
I want to know what I am to you in words in speech.
I don't want to hover over my funeral one day and hear the
thoughts and words of those I hold dear to my heart.
I will always want only to know I was important in your life.
Thanks to all who will or have wished me a 
Happy Birthday! 
All are appreciated and as the boo reminded me this morning,
"... all the bday wishes will be from people who
love and appreciate you. None are lagniappe!"
Could not have said it better.
Love to all!!!!



A NEW FLAMBOYANT FRIEND!

I have always loved meeting, speaking to flamboyant
men, always think they can become some of my best friends,
but usually when I meet such a lad, 
it is a quick encounter.
Such was the case one day last week when
I was between testing and had a little time to kill.
Where else to hang out than a booth rental flea market.
As I explore a corner I hear a loud voice,
"Girl, IT BE DARK IN THIS THERE CORNER TODAY!"
"Yep" I answer.
He then grabs a pair of used Oxfords, bright yellow in color:
"GURL, THESE BE FINE WITH THE SUIT I HAVE TO WEAR!"
I've no doubt he does.
I show him another pair that are not quite as loud, that
can be worn on most days. They are an expensive shoe
with some wear to them. He slides them on,
"GUH, THESE SLIDE RIGHT ON MADE FOR ME,
they so comfy....
I'm going ask them to go down."
they are 30 and while they are worth it for that brand I 
understand from further conversation that my new friend
is without much extra money.
He comes find me in this huge place,
"Twenty fie, won't go down mo"
Darn I say to myself and to my new pal.
As I walk around, looking for deals, things to repurpose,
He and I keep running into each other, having 
different conversations each time.
I give him my business card because one, 
I can see us becoming friends and two,
he is interested in possible hiring me to do a few things
for him. Each conversation makes me feel closer to him
and has me thinking of those shoes and how I want him
to have the shoes that fit him so perfectly and how
I just collected 25 bucks from a scrap job I had done.
Finally, I hear this colorful man checking out
and I just cannot let him leave without those shoes.
I hurry to the dark corner where we met, where
our new-one day friendship began, and I grab
those shoes, run to the register, put the box on the counter
with the 25 dollars and I hug him and walk away....
I see his shock, tears in his eyes.
He does not say No, no sign of protest, just
shock and pure love in his eyes.
He allows me to be the giver of
a RANDOM ACT OF KINDNESS
and I have the pure satisfaction of knowing
that those beautiful, wild shoes will walk the
streets of Bourbon Street with my flamboyant 
friends feet nestled in their comfort.

Friday, July 28, 2017

THE COTTAGE IS FOR ALL

A few days ago, a friend was having a rough time,
needed some time away from her daily life.
She was worried about coming to the Cottage would
interfere with The Boo or I's visits.
So I say here, a few things to all.
First, the Cottage belongs to me only on the Deed,
where my name is boldly printed,
LILLIAN COLLINS RIERA
yet it belongs to all, all those who call
me sister, aunt, Mom, Mumsie, friend, etc.
The Cottage, like a church, is just a structure without
people in it and enjoying it.
The Cottage brings me peace, joy, relaxation, creativity.
The Boo visits but his time here is limited due to work
and owning his own home. His visiting here
should never influence anyones choice to come here.
Whether you need a day or a night to refresh or
a week or month to "get away", 
whether I am at the Cottage or gone,
all are welcomed here, 
ALL ARE WELCOMED HERE.
It is only a structure without the people I love
surrounding it.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Another Fallen Classmate...

Just when I believe this blog will take a turn
to happier moments, another dear classmate and
friend has died.
Greg Terry.
He and I were not best buds but he was that
to two of my closest friends,
my cousin Reggie and my pal, Patrick.
Not many days passed in the highschool era that
Reggie, Greg and sometimes Patrick were not together.
As Reggie texted to me last night,
"...Not a day in Jr. high and high school was Greg and
I not together, like you and Laurie and Ann."
I remember that vividly, one day in particular.
I was driving around in my orange Pinto and
decided to go hang with the cuz,
Who was there, none other than Greg Terry.
We sat around and talked for hours probably about
everyone else in our class.
He was a kind man but over the years I have lost
touch with him yet his name came up lots in the
last year when I began to rekindle the friendships
between Patrick, Reggie and I.
We are not old yet, we are 53-give or take a year or two.
Yet when our parents were that age, we believed that was old.
Our classmates are too young to say goodbye to this life.
However, like the last few blogs I believe they are on
the journey of a lifetime, one all of us here on Earth cannot
understand and some of us fear.
RIP Greg and may all who love you know 
you, my dear have entered into the phase of
FOREVER LIFE.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Ironic

Ironic is what it is. 
If I ever needed confirmation that 
Blogging, sharing my thoughts was
Something I must do, I received that yesterday. 
Bestie Ann and I made it to the funeral
Of our dear friend and classmate Roxanne. 
We met Laurie there with her bestie babies. 
As I make it to the front of the church to
Pay my respects to the family many memories
Flood back. Roxanne in high school, 
Roxanne working with us at the hospital, 
Roxanne playing Pokeno with our group
For many years. I stop to speak and give hugs to 
Rox's parents and then her dear daughter, Who is
An adult now. She is so composed. So much like her Mother
In that way. I think she may not remember me 
From our Pokeno days when she was a little girl
So I remind her of who I am. 
She counters back with 
"Oh yeah, I remember you because of your blog. 
My Mom loved your blog and often shared from 
It or had me read it" 
Wow! I now know I don't do this just for me
But for those who may get something out of the
Things I write. 
I ask for permission to use her Mom and she says 
"Blog away, please!" 
So today I begin a routine once again involving 
Early mornings, a cup of coffee and 
A blog. 
Thanks Alyssa for showing me the way 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Random thoughts..

I have not blogged much lately,
not journaling much either,
I've lost the habit due to not doing them often enough.
So today, I know I have to get back to blogging.
I have had some unsettling days lately when it comes
to death. Young people, about my age dying.
Some from dreaded big C and
another unexpected and shocking.
I don't know why death is so unsettling 
for me right now.
Is it because you just never know when the
earthly life is over or am I too far from 
my faith? Let me share some of my thoughts here:
I know there is something else after this life, 
My faith is strong in that.
My fears are that I don't know the process
and I have big fears of the unknown,
it is most of our worst fear,
fear of the unknown.
At the funeral of a friend,
who passed unexpectedly, I am told by her father in law,
"It's just too fast, maybe after a long illness,
but this, you can't plan for this"
I think a lot about that since then.
Until my dear high school friend died after
battling cancer for over two years.
I visited with her last summer when hope was
still such a big part of her life.
She inspired me, sitting there so beautiful in 
her words, thin, showing off her wigs,
never giving up on the "next treatment"
Her last week, she suffered and her family could
do nothing but be with her and be her advocate.
So I now believe, whether you are taken unexpectedly 
or after a long illness, it is just not ever easy for
our Earthly beings.
I know both these friends, having lived their lives
for others, are no doubt going to a better place.
It is us, left behind to wonder, are made to 
struggle with their loss.
And for me? I continue to wonder what is after
this life. It is not meant to be known.
RIP Marie and Roxanne.

BABY BOY...

On this day, thirty two years ago, at this time of the morning, I had begun early labor and knew that this day would be my first baby...