Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Happy Anniversary to My Parents!

I wrote this blog entry for our kids...

May 22 is Grandma and Grandpa Gorman’s wedding anniversary!  Doesn’t she look pretty and doesn’t he look handsome?  Their first names are Tom and Mary Lee.

They were married on this day in 1976.  The night before they were married, they were up late, running from store to store in the rain, trying to find Grandpa a pair of white pants that would fit him. He was such a muscular weightlifter at the time that the pants that came with his tuxedo would not fit his thighs! 

Grandma and Grandpa met at a roller-skating rink.  On that first night that they met, Grandma didn’t give Grandpa her phone number.  Instead, she simply said, “Meet me here next week.”  Unfortunately, a big snow storm prevented both of them from going to the roller-skating rink the next weekend.  Oh no!  But, on the following weekend, they ran into each other again!  Whew!  This time, when Grandpa asked for her phone number, she simply said, “Look in the phone book.  I’m the only Pilley from Philly.” Thankfully, Grandpa found her phone number in the phone book, gave her a call, and the rest is history! 

In the wedding photo above, there is actually a man walking on the grass, far behind them.  The photographer waited until the man was directly behind them so that he could take a picture without the man being noticeable.  But we know he’s there.  So funny!

My Beloved Friend Becomes Ordained Father Lawrence Machia, OSB!

Friday, May 18, 2018

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Monday, May 07, 2018

Remembering My First Communion!

Here we are back in 1987 on May 2nd!

Thursday, February 01, 2018

Grandma, We Miss You Every Day!

It's been 1.5 years since Heaven gained this saint, and we miss her every day.  How lucky I am to have had her as my grandmother!  I will love her forever.

A Letter to My 5-Year-Old Son

January 31, 2018

My dearest Liam,

Tonight I experienced one of the most precious, tender moments of my life with you.  Tonight you are 5 years old and 5 months.  As we were preparing for bed, you were crying…simply because you didn’t want to clean up the toys in our living room—and mostly because you were tired.  You came up to me and cried, “My eyes are dropping tears all the way to the ground, Mommy.”  And I could see it was true.

So I turned on the CD player, which had newly been restocked with the Hidden in My Heart album by Scripture Lullabies.  It had been given to us by my dear friend Juliana Tomlinson on the occasion of your birth.  Throughout your entire infancy and babyhood, I listened to that CD with you every time I held you and rocked you in the rocking chair. In your first 2 years of life, I think I held and nursed you constantly!  So indeed this music is the soundtrack to your babyhood and the soundtrack of my motherhood!

The first track began to play, and I know you recognized it as much as I did.  It was called “Be Still and Know,” and—as it played—I sat down on the rocker and invited you to come sit on my lap.  You looked relieved to have such an invitation, and you curled up into my lap like you always did.  As you laid your head on my shoulder, I began to sing to you and rub your face.

At first, you didn’t really look at me.  You somewhat closed your eyes or looked slightly away from me as I sang to you and gently played with your eyebrows.  But I knew you were the baby boy who used to stare lovingly back into my eyes from the first day he was born. And, within a few minutes, we suddenly got very REAL. I started to weep tears of joy, realizing again how MUCH I love to hold you like this and how MUCH I miss it. You opened your eyes fully and began to behold me with your eyes as you’ve always done, and I could see the love in them!

As I cried, completely and beautifully affected by the joy of holding you, the beauty of the music, and the vivid memories of your babyhood, I started to tell you how much I missed holding you like this and that maybe we ought to do it more often!  You nodded.  And then I reminded you of what I’ve always said to you: that I LOVE holding you like this and will ALWAYS enjoy holding you this, even when you’re a big, strong man!  We both laughed a little.

“The Peace of God” played next.  As I continued singing and holding you, my tears suddenly started to flow even more, and I knew exactly why.  I told you how amazed I was that you were going to kindergarten next year and how these first 5 years have flown by.  I told you how much fun I knew you’d have in school but that I’d miss you every minute that you were gone…and that I’d be watching the clock for that first moment when I’d get to see you again.  “And you must tell me EVERYTHING about your day,” I said between sobs.

You were looking at my face with wonder, and your eyes were now crying, too.  I told you how God blessed you with such a good brain and such a good heart.  “You got both!” I exclaimed amid my tears, and you smiled. 

I told you how much I love seeing you get excited about things that you enjoy (which right now happens to be model trains and full-size steam locomotives, and interest I think you’ll have for LIFE!) and told you that in kindergarten you’d discover even MORE things that you’ll love.  I told you that God has a wonderful kindergarten teacher prepared for you, and it will be exciting to see who He reveals that to be. But I still cried hard about missing you, and I told you that the house wouldn’t the same without you walking around within it during the day. You kept giving me tight hugs. “Do you understand what I am saying?” I asked. And you nodded that you did.

As “Seek Ye First” began to play, I told you how grateful I was to be your Mommy and how blessed we were to have Daddy provide for us in a way that allowed me to be home with you all the days of your life before school. “We did it,” I told you, amazed and relieved.

Then “Precious Life” started to play. My tears continued to flow, and then I started to tell you how much I loved you and how grateful I was that God gave you to me as a child. I told you how unique you are, how there has never been someone exactly like you and how there never will be again. And then my sobbing continued as I shared with you how much I prayed for you over the course of my life. I knew that, as you listened, you FELT SO DEEPLY what I was saying, for you have been blessed with a very empathetic heart. I told you again how I used to pray and beg God to please give me a husband and children. And then I told you how much my life was changed when I met Daddy, when you were born, and when Vera was born!

You asked little questions, but mostly you just wanted to listen. Mostly, you just wanted to be held. And you wanted to be there for me.  And when I asked you two separate times what you enjoyed doing with me best, you said, “Just being with you.”  That made me heart swell!

Eventually, our conversation ceased.  But the music kept playing.  And we kept rocking.  And my tears continued to flow, sometimes in little waves and, at other times, in big waves.  I noticed and appreciated that you weren’t at all interested in going anywhere else.  You just wanted to stay in my arms a little bit longer.  You knew what we had was a tender, magical moment.  And we were going to make it last as long as we could.

When you finally did get up off my lap (for, at this point, your long body was just uncomfortable!), I saw that we had listened to 9 of the 12 tracks on the CD.  Later I totaled these to discover that we spent 38 precious minutes together like that!!  I held and rocked you and told you how much I loved you for 38 lovely, wonderful, forever-in-my-heart minutes!  My heart feels so FULL tonight.  And I thank you for that.  I thank you for being the most wonderful son my heart could have ever hoped for, and I thank you for loving me back with what appears to be the same intensity I have for you!!

With all my love forever,

And yet, it wasn't so long ago that we looked like this!