Archive for the ‘Parenting’ Category

Life vs. Death   2 comments

So recently I had an amazing experience.  A sad one, but a good one.  My dad has always said to me growing up that “Life isn’t fair” and I totally agree with him.

Sadly, my amazing wife lost her Grandmother last week.  She was terribly saddened and distraught which of course was not easy for me to sit back and take.  Seeing her cry when we walked into the hospice room where Grandma was taking her last breaths was very uneasy for all of us, including our 10 month daughter.  The three of us walked into Grandma’s room and she lay on this bed with tubes connected to her nose and we knew from the report of the nurses that things were not good and her outcome was very grim.  It reminded me of when I was 16 and watched my grandfather take his last breath in his hospital bed and my dad cried which truly blasted me because I had never seen him cry in the 16 years prior.

My wife was immediately a wreck upon seeing her grandma in this state and our daughter started to cry and fuss when she saw her mother like this and also it was like death was in the air and she knew it too, she could sense it, much like I could.  From my experience with my grandfather I could tell that this was not good, and the nurse confirmed she had just called my wife’s aunt to tell her Grandma would not make it through the night and things were going from bad to worse.  I swooped up our daughter and took her out of the room and gave my wife some alone time with her Grandma, at the time, I thought, perhaps for the last time.  I, of course, did not say that to her, but I was thinking it.  We were there at 6:30ish that night and later we heard she passed away at 7:00pm that same night.

In this whole traumatic chain of events and death I saw LIFE.  I saw LIFE in our daughter.  Our beautiful lil 10 month old.  Ok, I am biased, but she is so frickin cute!  More importantly, in this time of death with my wife’s Grandma I remember watching our daughter in the waiting room of the hospice center, knowing that Grandma was going to die, that I had LIFE right in front of me, and DEATH was just down the hall.  This was so sad of course, but so wonderful to see my little daughter so healthy and so full of LIFE.  My 10 month old daughter had her whole LIFE in front of her.  I took solice in the fact that Grandma had an opportunity to meet our daughter and she got to know her and spend many quality moments with her.  Moreover, our daughter was the culmination of Grandma, the offspring of her granddaughter.  If it wasn’t for Grandma my daughter wouldn’t be here today.  In Grandma, I saw my daughter.  My daughter will be Grandma’s legacy and that is a blessed and amazing gift.  So in the end when I saw DEATH,  I also saw LIFE.

Thank you Grandma.  Thank you so very much.  We love you and we miss you.

Posted April 18, 2011 by brentcatlett in Parenting

$700 Honda   4 comments

"The Racecar . . ."

Picture me rollin’ in this bad boy out of some parking lot where my wife and I had met this gal at a pizza joint via Craigslist on a nice Sunday evening to see about buying this car.  She was listed at $900 on CL.  I was out to buy something for less than $1000 for my new job of Instructional Technology Trainer for my district because I was going to be traveling all around the district from school to school and my BIG HEMI full size Dodge Ram 1500 wasn’t going to cut it with the way gas prices are!  I needed a little gas saver car.

So our journey led us to this Honda.  1993 Accord.  This “RACECAR” as I affectionately like to call her now.  That’s right, it’s a she.  She is somethin’ else.  When I test drove it the 1st time it had no muffler and sounded like a stock car so that is where her nickname came from.  In fact, my wife wouldn’t even get out of our other car to test drive it with me and I remember her laughing at me as I drove off in it.

So the test drive went well.  It rattled, it creaked, it leaked oil, there was rust all over it,  it had 253,000 miles on it, and it roared like a stockcar!  So I bought it!  I offered them $700 and they took it.  I bought it that evening and drove it home.  That was in July.  My new job started in August with the new school year.  I needed something and I needed it quick!

Now here is where my story gets better!  So a couple months into the job I was heading from one school to another and I decided to stop at a gas station to grab a pop and snack.  I pull up in front  and park in one of the stalls.  I go in and get my pop and snack.  As I am in line to pay in walks a gal dressed very sharply.  She walks in and grabs a drink out of the cooler and gets in line behind me.  I walk out and she isn’t far behind.  I walk around my $700 Honda and open the door to get in.  She walks around her HUMMER H2 parked next to me and gets in.  I fire up the RACECAR and back up and drive off.

I remember thinking, “now this is funny”.

Why is it that people feel the need to fill their lives with material things?  I had to laugh that day as I drove away in my $700 1993 Honda and she drove off in her very expensive Hummer H2.  Do you think she judged me when she saw my car?  Would you judge me for my car?  I remember thinking what a GAS HOG that vehicle must be?  Why not buy the ridiculous Hummer H2 that epitomizes the overspending and gluttony of our society.

I drive my RACECAR with Pride.  I don’t need a brand new Hummer H2 to feel like I’m important or worthy of looks.  People are so messed up in what is important to them.  I am not by any means singling this one gal out individually, but moreover I am questioning all of us, myself included.  As I reflect on what is important to me it has become more and more simple as I have grown to my current 35th year of life.

It’s family, it’s my son, it’s my daughter, it’s my wife, it’s my future baby coming in October, it’s my parents, brother, sister, nieces, nephews, in-laws, and cousins.  It’s all them, it’s not the material things I have or accumulate.  It’s the relationships with those people and the people I come in contact with.

Simple as that.  Maybe you should by a RACECAR!?!?!

Posted April 10, 2011 by brentcatlett in Education, Parenting

Twitter   1 comment

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Posted February 22, 2011 by brentcatlett in Education, Parenting, Technology, Web 2.0