Posted by Ilana Angel
My son started to not feel good last week. He was stuffed up, had a sore throat, and was achy. I figured he was catching a cold, or perhaps just run down as his schedule with school, homework, extracurricular activities, and an insane social life, was taking a toll. I kept him home from school for a day so he could rest. That was the beginning.
Monday he stayed home and Tuesday he was back at school. He was calling me Mom so I was not worried. He was not feeling 100%, but sickness had not settled in. By Wednesday he slept in and went to school late. By Thursday, Mom was starting to sound different. I can tell when he is getting sick by how long it takes to say Mom.
It became clear this was more than a cold, or exhaustion, so we went to see the doctor. My darling boy had both an ear infection and a sinus infection. He went on antibiotics, stayed home another day, and got some much needed rest. He spent the weekend being lazy, getting rest, catching up on homework, and getting pampered by good old Mom.
He went from I’m okay Mom, to I’m not feeling good Moooom, to I think I need to stay home Mooooooom, and the weekend began with I need soup Mooooooooooooooooom. It was actually quite funny. I was able to gage how he was feeling by how he pronounced my favorite word. Interesting how your favorite word can be made to sound so annoying.
My son is a remarkable human being and I love more that I ever thought I could love anyone. He is perfect to me and I am proud of how I have raised him. He is becoming a truly wonderful man and I know his wife will call me one day to say thank you. I just hope she figures it out and calls before she has to deal with him being sick. That changes everything.
If her favorite word is Honey, it will quickly become Hoooooooooooney, and she will be annoyed. A sick man is not cute. They whine, complain, and are rather unpleasant. You can’t laugh at them because it just pisses them off, but it truly is funny. Strong men, who can do anything, revert to being helpless babies and it’s fascinating.
When I’m sick I do laundry, cook dinner, go to work, and don’t complain. When it comes to how we handle being sick, men are the weaker sex. It’s not their fault, so God bless them. My son is feeling great and when he went to bed telling me I love you Mom, I knew he was well. I love my son and truth be told his being sick is not that bad.
Of course I want him to always be healthy, but if the common cold can send him back to his childhood, when snuggling with his Mom was cool, then I can handle it and hope he gets a cold at least once a year so I can hear the musical beauty of the word Moooooooooom. I’m happy my boy is better. I am wishing him good health, and keeping the faith.
5.24.13 at 7:07 am | Burning myself has shown me I am burning out.
5.23.13 at 3:17 pm | Dating, divorce, death, and marriage, all require. . .
5.22.13 at 6:34 am | I am forever touched by this young man.
5.19.13 at 5:43 pm | JDate should be more of a mensch.
5.17.13 at 5:27 pm | I am never going on another coffee date.
5.14.13 at 4:36 pm | Love needs a kick in the ass.
5.23.13 at 3:17 pm | Dating, divorce, death, and marriage, all require. . . (365)
5.19.13 at 5:43 pm | JDate should be more of a mensch. (360)
5.14.13 at 4:36 pm | Love needs a kick in the ass. (268)
March 4, 2012 | 2:54 pm
Posted by Ilana Angel
My heart has been broken. When my father died it broke in a way that it will never recover from. There is the heartbreak of loss and sorrow, and the heartbreak of love. Both take your breath away and you are certain you will never recover. While my heart will never be the same without the sound of father’s voice to fill it, God willing I will find love again.
I am a girl and therefore have an unrealistic view of love. I am a hopeless romantic who believes love is available to everyone who wants it. There is nobody unworthy of love, and the search for my beshert had been as much about loving myself as finding someone to love me. I am a good person, a great partner, and am of the belief that any man would be lucky to be in my life and have me love him.
Perhaps I’ve seen too many romantic comedies, read too many Harlequin romance novels, or spent too much time watching Lifetime television for women, but I am a girl to the core which means when it comes to love, I am crazy. Girls are insane about matters of the heart and we all know that’s true so no point in trying to deny it. Love is grand and also very complicated.
By complicated of course I mean we will never understand it. The most simple of gestures are the most romantic and love filled to me. When a man touches my hair, calls for no reason, guides me through a door, or tells me I am a good mother, I can feel my heart flutter. Love is divine and it’s a blessing from God that we are able to survive heartache and find love again.
I am a believer in love and think the best thing we can do when looking for love, or in love, is be brave. I am a master communicator and very brave when it comes to sharing what I want and need, in addition to what I value and appreciate. The man I love never needs to guess what I am thinking because I will tell him. Being brave is an important tool in love and in life.
I have taught my son to be brave. He is young and not a fully confident human being yet, but he will get there, and he will be brave. He knows to fight for not only what he wants, but what is right. I love my child more than anything else and he is my priority. My heart is wrapped up in my son and it beats because of him. I could not love him more and I work hard at being a good mom.
We are very close. It’s been him and me for his entire life and while he has a great friendship with his dad, it’s different from the bond we share. My son does not have the type of relationship with his dad where he goes to him for matters of the heart. He comes to me, which I love. We are protective of each other, brave when it comes to our communication, and there is no fear.
He can tell me anything and everything, and he usually does. I am honest with him and it has created a true friendship. My worry however, is that at this stage of his life, is a woman the best person to be giving him advice on love? I am the perfect person to teach him how to treat a lady, but perhaps not the best person to teach him how to get a lady.
I cannot bear the thought of him going through a heartbreak, but it’s coming, and often, so shouldn’t I prepare him? Can I prepare him? With no man in my life to go to for guidance, it is up to me to teach him, but I worry that my mushy and romantic heart will not give him the right answers. A single mom can raise a son to be a mensch, but can she raise him to be a man?
When my son asks for my opinion on girls I advise him from the perspective of a girl because I don’t know the perspective of a man. If I did I’d be selling that info for a gazillion dollars. I think that is doing him a disservice. How can he get a realistic view of love and heartbreak? I am raising a wonderful man without the benefit of testosterone and I am worried about that.
My son has seen me with a broken heart. He eased my pain when I lost my father, and supported me through the end of two relationships. He is calming, funny and wise. He values me as a human being and will not allow me to settle for someone who does not also value me. I am a better woman having raised this man, and it’s scary to think I might give him bad love advice.
My son has a very close group of friends and they talk about women and relationships, but they are kids, and boys, so it’s the blind leading the blind. There should be a Big Brother program for single moms to call and get help in talking about women to their sons. They can guide us in how to raise our sons to be good men, without the benefits of having testosterone.
My job for the past 16 years has been to protect this wonderful boy. I shield him from pain and sadness, but when it comes to affairs of the heart, there is no protection. He will have to deal with heartache like we all do. Whether you are 16 or 46, heartache is the same. It is consuming, hurtful, suffocating and sad. It is impossible to see the light when you are deep in the tunnel.
When it comes to love, the best thing I can do for my son is to stop talking and just listen. He will find his way. I can’t help him avoid the pitfalls, but I can catch him when he falls. Love is heaven and love is hell. It is the same for everyone. By the same of course I mean it is completely different for men than it is for women. There is no escaping cupid’s arrow. Thank God!
My son is a terrific human being. He is kind and sensitive, funny and smart. He is beginning his love affair with love and I wish him the best. I will sit back and stand by should he need me, and stay busy making voodoo dolls of the girls who dare to hurt my baby. I’m just kidding. Not kidding. Kidding. Not. I will continue to teach my son to be brave, and keep the faith.
March 1, 2012 | 12:33 pm
Posted by Ilana Angel
I had an interesting discussion about marriage today. I was talking to a man in his 50’s who is divorced and dating. He is Jewish, educated, successful, funny, handsome, and a failure at marriage. We’ll call him Moshe. Moshe can clearly remember the moment that his wife, his soul mate, became his cellmate.
I don’t remember that about my marriage or my husband, but I do remember being very unhappy. There was no infidelity in my marriage, or in Moshe’s. I was married for 5 years, Moshe for much longer, and it’s interesting that sex was not an issue for either of us, and actually continued even though the marriage was ending.
I certainly contributed to the end of my marriage, and no blame needs to be assigned, but it was my marriage, it ended, and so some of the blame must be mine. When my marriage became unbearable I left. I refused to have it be a sentence, and so I paroled myself because I was not willing to fix it.
It was an easy decision at the time. While I have regretted it over the years, it was never regret for me, but rather for my son. Being a child of divorce is difficult and I didn’t want that for him. I often wonder if I could have suffered in silence to give my child the family he wanted. Me? Suffering in silence? Never going to happen.
Moshe hung on for much longer. There was a breakdown in his marriage, they both made mistakes, but rather than get out when he knew it was not working, he chose to stay. He has children, and it was an entwined life so even though it was not the life he wanted, it was a good life, until it became a prison. That said, he stayed long after it felt like prison.
Moshe said that by the end of his marriage, prison would have been better because at least his wife would not be there. It made me laugh at first, and then got me to thinking about marriage. At what point does marriage change from a loving place to an institution? Can you even have a marriage without that transition? Is marriage just bad?
I loved being married and when the marriage was good, it was great. I am forward thinking in a lot of ways, but the older I get the more I view marriage with very traditional eyes. I like keeping a nice home, cooking for my family, taking care of the children, and providing a great sex life for my spouse. If I were living in Poland in the 1800’s I’d be a real catch.
If it were the 1950’s, I’d have men banging down my door. That said, if I were in prison, I’d have them lining up to braid my hair, and I’d be trading cigarettes for a sex free life. While an interesting analogy, I would take a bad marriage over prison and I would take no marriage, over being in one that felt like a sentence.
I asked my Twitter followers if they would stay in a bad marriage, even if the sex continued to be good, and responses were mixed. Women could not embrace the idea of a marriage falling apart but the sex still being good, and men where happy to be having sex in the marriage, but were also looking for new sex.
Single mothers were concerned with showing their children a healthy marriage, and they also wanted to know what the financial situation was. Women were more willing to stay in a bad marriage if it meant their kids were taken are of, and men were ready to abandon the marriage and look for a new partner.
Men related to the prison analogy, but women did not. Women felt that providing a home with two parents to their kids mattered, and men over 40 were quick to say that prison was not an option for them at this stage of their lives. Sadly and surprisingly, not many people spoke highly of their own marriages. Is there anyone with a happy and healthy marriage?
People wrote to tell me that no marriage was perfect, and sometimes you needed to give up some happy for your kids, and that is unfortunate. I’m not an expert on marriage, and it’s been 15 years since I was married, but I know that the stories of marriage were of a marriage that I do not want for myself. Do people with good marriages just not talk about it?
My goals for marriage are simple. I want to share my life with a man. I want us to raise our children in a home where they see love and respect. I want to have intimate and fulfilling sex, and I want to have it often. I want to support him and his passions, and I want him to ease my sorrow. I want love and I want a witness to my life.
I don’t want someone to stay with me because it is easy, or because there is a sense of obligation. They would also know that I would not stay in the relationship to make things easier for myself, and my obligation is to my child and myself. I would be doing a disservice to us all by staying if it’s not working.
I think an advantage to being divorced, if there is an advantage, is that I have no fear in terms of my love life. I have experienced the type of love where you want to spend the rest of your life with someone, and survived the heartache of losing that love. I can love freely and openly because I am not afraid. I can survive a broken heart which is liberating.
I want to talk late into the night about my day. I want to wake up early and have quite time with my partner. I want to spend Shabbat with our kids, reading, laughing, and taking time to enjoy life. I am not expecting it to be easy, but I am unwilling to do it, if it’s going to be hard. Marriage should be fun. Work, but still fun.
I am not dying to get married again, but if my partner wanted to have a life with me without marriage, then I would be okay with that. By okay with that of course I mean he is going to have to marry me, but he will get there on his own, without my having to pressure him. That is how marriage works. If I have to force him to marry me, he is not the one.
Marriage is a beautiful thing when it works, and while I do enjoy a convicted felon on occasion, prison is not an option in my marriage or otherwise. Moshe is a lot like me, and though we ended our marriages differently, the good news is that we got out of a dark place and went into the light, which is a blessing. Better to be alone than unhappy.
Moshe may actually be the only person on the planet who dates more than I do. The difference is that I am clear on what I am looking for, and he is waiting for it to become clear. He might figure it out one day, or he’ll just enjoy his life how it is now, which is good. If he ever gets some clarity though, I’d like to go out with him. By go out with him of course I mean I have a crush on Moshe.
He is a lovely man and I enjoy being with him. He makes me laugh and think. Sadly he has a lot of wild oats to sow and I’m not a wild oat kind of girl, so I wish him well and continue the search for my beshert. I have learned my beshert is equal parts Clooney and Moshe, so now the search will be easier, if I just keep the faith.