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Saturday, February 19, 2011

"I Love You, Miss Aida"


This is the one of the hardest posts I have ever written...ever. The only one that even comes close was the one I wrote about my daughter "Gigi".

As anyone who is a regular reader of my posts may have guessed or for those of you that already know me - know- I love being a mom and I love my children, even my "adopted" ones(many neighborhood kids call me "Mom").

So with heavy heart I write this post in memory of my daughter Christionne Savone Brown, who the world and I lost on Jan 2, 2009, whose last words to me were "I love you, Miss Aida". I so desperately wanted to tell her to call me "mom" after all, her father and I were going to announce our engagement that evening, but I hesitated, wanting to surprise her later.

She was doll of a little girl and I was so excited to be her mom. I dreamt of late night talks with ALL my girls, I pictured her in a yellow dress at the wedding - just like she liked; a little v-cut and slightly snug at the waist ( we already talked about the clothes she liked and how she'd want to help with picking decorations for the house, "except from Walmart", their selection that year was "just terrible"- I agreed.)

She was my yellow lady bug. I wanted her to be my "sticky frog", mainly because she had tons of energy and was always bouncing around and she loved to hug! I told her my thoughts but she quickly let me know she was no frog! I explained how each of us in the house was some kind of bug -me; the butterfly, Lani; the red Lady bug, Gi; the Dragonfly, Raven; the bumblebee and her little newborn sister was the Firefly, so we HAD to choose something for her, to which she retorted, "pick something else". Ok. We settled on a yellow Lady bug - yellow for her favorite color and the lady bug since she was closet to Meilani. Done.

She was sweet and sassy -I liked that- she was just like one of my own. I was afraid she'd be shy and my girls would over-power her with their larger than life personalities, but no, she held her own lovely. She was certainly no pushover, but she was soft and sweet enough to let most everything roll off her shoulders, a few family meetings showed me that. She spoke, but always only had nice things to say, she was so happy to be a part of our family...it was her first time having sisters, since she was an only child, and she had every intention of enjoying every moment of it!

She smiled...a lot! She always had a smile on her face. Hopping along - singing - laughing - just an angel ...really and just as smart as she was happy...I just knew we were going have great talks.

There are no words I can put on the screen or a piece of paper to express how much I loved her. How I dreamt of being her mom and how I imagined helping her dad to mold her future. How I laid up at night praying and asking God to help me make the right decisions and to help ease the transition for all the girls. Blended families are tough ...add to that a house full of estrogen and - boy oh boy - but yet all the girls seemed to be managing...

The last day I saw her she was on "baby duty", it was her day with her newborn sister (My mom on close watch) she was so proud and excited! I came by later that day to check on them again and they were all in the bedroom together playing video games. In a few short hours we were all going to celebrate Raven's birthday and unbeknown to them, the engagement. It was during that check-in when she said it..."I love you, Miss Aida" - I said 'I love you too" and gave her a big hug...I really wanted to tell her 'call me mom'...its the one thing I regret not saying...

She died later that afternoon...she drowned in the pool - life has not been the same since.

I didn't write this for anyone, but me and her. I'm a writer - we immortalize people through our words - She deserves to be remembered. Today would have been her 12th birthday. I write this because she had a name and she was loved by us all, my family, her family - Even her school had a memorial service for her - she left a huge impact in her too brief life.

In her place there's a gaping hole...

But..She also left me some gifts. Next month, for my birthday, I will share what she and my other girls have taught me...

In the meantime, today I celebrate her and her life, too brief and too short, but I'm grateful! I'm grateful that I was able to be a part of her life, even if for a short time and I'm grateful, grateful I was able to hear her say:

"I love you, Miss Aida!".

Lucky me.
Be blessed.


Raven, Lani, Chrissy & Gigi
Two days before

Monday, February 14, 2011

Bah Humbug!

Ooops..wrong holiday.

wait..here it is -

Happy Thanksgiving! Um...no. (I do that every year!)

Ahh..here it is -- HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!!






OK..I have to admit I was sorta, tempted to keep it "bah..humbug", with me not having a Valentine, again, this year. I'm sure some of you find yourself in the same predicament, but I decided against it. Why? Well, because...

I have long ago come to terms with the fact that being alone doesn't mean being lonely. While having a Valentine is cute and all, I will not succumb to the pressure that I need to have one or that somehow I'm inadequate because I don't.

Truth be told, I'm single on purpose, I've had some "prospects" for the lack of a better term, but maybe I'm not ready or maybe I'm unsure - either way it equates to being on my own and you know what- I've learned to really savor "me time" and enjoy my own company. "Me time" for a single mom is so essential!

So my Valentines, for now, are my girls and my beautiful grand-daughter. I am so utterly in love with each of them, in fact throw in my son-in-law, too-- he's just awesome! So when I really think of it- I don't have a shortage of Valentines.

OK, OK... It's not the same as having my own romantic sweetie trying to woo me - showering me with sweet nothings and gifts and, of course, chocolate! And, flowers! (As a former florist, I mustn't forget the flowers) But as a former florist, I can also see the stress people put on themselves trying desperately to prove to their loved ones how much they love them on this particular day. Of course, it has to be traditional, too... long stemmed RED roses...they must be RED and LONG-STEMMED (for the record long-stemmed roses die faster - ask your florist). Rarely did I see men use their imagination and try something different and I understood why, because on the occasion when I'd have a daring soul - often his wife/girlfriend would be disappointed, or worse, send the flowers back!

Sounding bah humbug-ish? Don't get me wrong - I love Valentine's Day. The hearts, the flowers, the chocolate...oh, the chocolate... Plus my favorite colors - Pink and Red! As a closet romantic, I secretly love all the mushy gushy stuff, too. I guess the part I'm against is the mandatory nature of it and even more I'm against people feeling bad because they don't have someone to "love". Well, not to get too Mother Theresa on you, but I say - FIND someone to love!

Before you walk away, hear me out - why not find another individual feeling like you and share this day together? It doesn't have to be a person of the opposite sex. Just a friend or colleague, a homeless person, even, if you dare. Or you can do what my kids and I did...we agreed that this year they'd be my Valentine and I'd be theirs ...so we baked for each other...


Sure you could be your own best Valentine and shower yourself with lots of presents and enjoy your own company - I do, but there are countless people out there feeling unloved and would enjoy the love of friendship. I read once that if you want love you must first give it away - so go ahead...get to giving...

and if you need someone to send some chocolate to...I like mine dark
I'm just saying...

Be blessed.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

It's Official!



This blog is now available for your Kindle! What exciting news for me and great convenience to those that like to keep everything in their reader. Not to mention- a huge step of faith!

This means that:

A) I will exposed to a larger viewing audience

B) I will have to keep my resolution of at least writing once a week - to keep my readers interested!

I plan to take this new adventure seriously and do my best to encourage uplift and share...

So, if you have a Kindle...please consider subscribing...yes - I do earn a percentage of the cost but I do not set the monthly subscription rate - Amazon does. It's about the cost of one cup of coffee a month from McKie D's - without the caffeine rush, but hopefully, you'll get the spiritual lift!

Your support of this new endeavor would mean so much to me and my family. It's not about the money its about showing my kids and those I people I mentor and teach - that it IS possible to go after your dreams!

As always
Be Blessed!