Tag Archives: Christmas

Tweet Through It: A Parent’s Thoughts During Their Child’s Christmas Show Pt. 2

 

25 years ago, I was that kid in kindergarten who loved to perform. I was Michael Jackson 2.0 in my head (I wore a silver, glittered hat that got thrown all over our apartment as I spun in the mirror and recited the words to my hit song “Ridiculous Girl.”). Elementary school shows were my time to shine and I had to let the whole world know what they needed to get the first glimpse of. One couldn’t tell me that every show I was in wasn’t entertaining.

Now on the other side of that coin, sitting through these shows is horrendous. They’re actually adorable; but there are many other things I would rather do than sit through that. However, it is endearing to see my child evolve from infant to rehearsing for weeks to sing songs of yuletide merriment.

With that said, here is this year’s Christmas tweets. With Cyd the Kid being in elementary school, I have to retire the crier count. Enjoy!

I decided not to sign Cydney out of school. There was a long line of parents, it was 2:30, and school gets out at 3. By the time I would have made it to the front of the line, the bell would have went off and she would be leaving anyway.

If you enjoyed this, here are the links to last year’s shows: Cydney’s Christmas concert, Courtney’s Christmas concert, Cydney’s Spring concert, Courtney’s spring concert.

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The Unexpected and Inadvertent Extension of Christmas

It’s a Friday morning.  I have more than a shitload of work to do and I don’t feel like doing any of it.  I woke up Monday morning all kinds of excited because that meant that after a week of children being home, finally I can get back to work.

By all means, Monday was epic.  I woke up at 4 am, hit the snooze button twice, went to the gym, got home and got shit DONE!  It was amazing.  On my mind was my most amazing Christmas break of all time, which happened by default because I came down with chickenpox literally at the stroke of 12 in 1993 (“Happy New Year!  Chad, you have chickenpox” my mom said).  That week I spent two days with my mom and the other three with my pops and it was lit!  My dad let me do whatever the fuck I wanted to…It was a fleeting thought that was pleasant to relive for thirty seconds.

Tuesday morning, I woke up at 4 am again.  Hit the gym, did dead lifts at 315, barbell shrugs at 385 lbs, and had the feeling that today was going to be a repeat of Monday’s productivity.  I happily wake up the kids for school just to find out my nephew was sick and had vomited all over the floor.  My mother had to leave for school, so I was prepared to take Cydney and my nephew to school.  My nephew said that he was felling better and would be able to do school.  Five minutes later, I realized that wasn’t happening.

I was able to be productive during the first part of the day because he was asleep.  I wrote my heartfelt daydream about Timile’s thirtieth birthday, finished mixing for Cydney’s podcast, and spent most of the afternoon just kicking it with my nephew because I knew the company was needed.  Feeling the effects of lifting rediculously heavy, I took a brief nap before Cydney came home because I just know that the ball of energy she requires I didn’t have.

Wednesday morning, I wake up a little later.  I get my nephew to school and I then take Cydney.  I proceed to get busy by doing  some writing, responding to some emails, submitting a pitch or two, and a short phone conference in as well.  Around 1 pm, I head to the gym because I didn’t go this morning.  It’s leg day.  This was my first leg day since March because my legs were do big all of my jeans looked like jeggings.  I was kind of excited about this.  I load up the plates on the leg press, looking forward in seeing if I still had what it takes to press twenty-four plates that weighed 45lbs each (plus the machine is around 1,200 lbs).  I do one quick warm up set with twelve plates and my phone rings.  It’s my mother saying that Cydney’s school called her because Cydney had gotten sick in school.  So much for that.

Wednesday afternoon and evening, I changed sheets three times because Cydney had vomited on them.  I had to stop the car twice while at stop lights because she had thrown up en route to the house.  It was rough.  But my baby wasn’t doing well, so it didn’t bother me and I was in dad-mode for real.  She sat with me and watched both Rocky III and IV with some “intermissions” in between.  Clearly she didn’t go to school on Thursday.  While Cydney was feeling better yesterday, no work got done because it was her day to have me to herself by rocking out and doing whatever she wanted.

So I guess to some extent, I had another extended vacation.  It wasn’t the kind that I wanted or wished for; but I guess to some extent it was needed.  I enjoyed myself as well.  There’s something about when the kids are under the weather that the soft and nurturing side kicks in and you just want to be there for them followed by letting them have fun along the way.  I knew how much it meant to me, so I was more than happy to do it for them.

 

Christmas(es) In Hollis

Growing up, Run DMC’s yuletide classic is the only Christmas I knew.  Until I was thirteen years old, I lived a ten minute walk away from Hollis Avenue and so did both my maternal and paternal grandparents.  My parents, sister, and I moved twenty minutes away to Nassau County; but every December 25th we still spent Christmas in Hollis, Queens.

For the last two years, the focal point of Christmas has taken place at our home in Long Island.  Ever since my grandmother passed away in 2014, everyone has come out to our house for dinner because our house is the one with the little children in it.  While it tires me out, I am much more fond of being on the parent side of Christmas than the days of waking up and the day being all about me.

The peak of Christmas Day revolved around Cydney; but it more or less was about me.  Cydney’s grandmother had been trying to contact me for the last two weeks inquiring about video-chatting with her grandchild.  We would be going back and forth, I think once I tried to call to let them speak on the phone, and it just didn’t happen.  It was my fault.  I wasn’t doing it on purpose.  December is just a very busy month because there’s just a lot to do and I’m working.  We shot for Christmas Eve; but I dropped the ball because I was just running around all day.

For my new readers, I’m going to give a brief synopsis of my relationship with my Cydney’s grandparents.  Late October/Early Noveber 2011, Timile (Cydney’s mother), Cydney, and I moved from Buffalo to Virginia so that Timile could spend what would be her final days with her parents.  Three weeks into moving there, shit got really real in which my parents came down from New York to mediate and I came back home to get things together in order for Timile and our daughter to join me back up there.  December 9th I found out Timile passed away via Twitter from a classmate and her parents never called me, I wasn’t invited to a funeral, and I wasn’t even told “Hey, come get your kid.”  The last part of that conjunction didn’t happen because they were trying to get custody of Cydney citing that they didn’t know where her father was; which I found that out in a Virginia clerk’s office after four months of preliminary custody hearings in New York.  After five months of my case being in two states, I finally got my daughter back, where visitation cases drew out for almost another two years.

One could understand why I wouldn’t want to have shit to do with them.  The truth is that while many presume or assume that Timile’s passing has made me a jaded cynic, it’s everything that happened with her parents.  However, the door is always open for them to call or visit.  Cydney doesn’t hear from them for months at a time.  They have never come to visit.  I was being very generous by stopping by their house when I was in Virginia several months ago and I was told with the most sincerity “Don’t take so long to visit again,” or something like that in which I don’t feel like digging up old posts for the actual wording.  The way that I feel is that this is their grandchild and they should be coming to see her.  If they don’t because they’re apprehensive about dealing with me, that’s their problem…they wrote the ending to this movie.  Yet, I have no regrets or hard feelings for them.

So anyways, Cydney Skype’d with her grandparents on Christmas Day.  She was excited to speak with them and show them all of the toys Santa brought.  Eventually, she got a little bored and wanted to go back to playing, so she handed me the phone.  I told them Merry Christmas and we chatted very briefly.  Cydney had gone off to roll around the house in her new scooter and I called her back to say goodbye and Merry Christmas one last time.  As Cydney sat on my lap, I was looking at the window in which there was us and the other portion of the screen that was them, in which our common bond was this little girl whose mother we both loved dearly.  Timile was their Cydney and I couldn’t imagine what I would feel like if my little girl was gone before I was.  We smiled, said our final salutations, and I wasn’t sure if Cydney’s grandmother was speaking to her; but she said “I love you.”  I responded “I love you, too.”  Then there was the brief awkward pause with both of us just looking at each other because I was trying to figure out how to close the app.

Yep…that happened.  While I may have brief flashes in my mind of Christmases in Hollis remembering the good ole days as a kid; I am appreciating Christmas much more as a parent.

How I Found Out Santa Claus Wasn’t Real

I am almost certain that the way God communicates with me is through humor…I really must be one of His favorite muses or something. Or He just knows my heart. I live to tell the tales that are too good to be true yet one can’t make them up, either.

I first told this tale almost three years ago to the day on this blog. However, I’m a much better writer and I find most of that shit to be deplorable. Also, the statistics on the blog and laws of average suggest that many of you who are reading now didn’t back then; so you’re getting a better story.

I love to take personality tests. I am just fascinated with how people think, why they do the things that they do, and a genuine passion for interpersonal relationships. I am also in the business of selling me, which consists of constantly looking at myself under a microscope to better myself as well as create more content. So today’s test was with regards to being Machiavellian. I scored within the seventy-third percentile. This means that I am cynical, have very little faith in the world, and because people are bastards with bastard coated filling, someone must manipulate them. I blame all of this on my aunt and how I learned about Santa Claus.

December 1994. I was in the fourth grade and had just turned nine years old no more than two weeks before I saw life as gray as winter skies in New York. Ever since my very brief stint in the Cub Scouts, there had been rumors beginning to spread among the boys that Santa Clause wasn’t real. It was always some dickhead in like the fourth grade trying to fuck everything up for the sake of fucking everything up. I didn’t believe those kids. Santa Clause was real, dammit. I saw him at the mall.  Yes, we lived in an apartment in Queens with no chimney; and when I asked my mom about that she said he comes up the stairs and through the door.  My mother wouldn’t lie to me.  If there is ONE THING ON PLANET EARTH THAT IS A FACT IT IS THAT PARENTS NEVER EVER EVER EVER EVER E-V-E-R lie to their children!

So one day, my sister and I are being watched by my twenty-one year old aunt at my grandmother’s house.  My aunt was wrapping gifts and putting them under the tree while watching The Wayans Brothers.  So for some reason I walked by and just happened to see in my peripheral vision my aunt writing in blue pen with her amazing cursive.  You know how you aren’t paying attention to something but instinct kicks in for you to focus for the sake of your own life?  That happened.  My aunt was writing “To: Chad From: Santa.”

My eyes widened and I think I gasped.  My nine years and two weeks had flashed before my eyes and in those moments I saw all of the times that I had received gifts from my grandmother’s house that said “To: Chad From: Santa” written in the same handwriting as my aunt and I had never made the connection.  I was distraught.  Upon hearing my response, my aunt said to me “You should’ve been minding you business!”

I then did what any good sibling would do…I told my sister Santa was fake.  She was up-set!  She didn’t want to believe me.  Being that I had just come out of the matrix and was now a hardened adult, I knew my sister was in denial.  She hadn’t had the time to go through the five stages of grief, so she’d be ready to handle it in 1995.  We’d be in fifth grade where we can write with pens in class, do geometry with protractors, and everyone in double-digits is mature.  On Christmas Eve she asked me to believe in Santa Claus just this year for her, and I said “Okay.”  I didn’t; but I then understood why parents lie to children…because they SUCK!

Looking back, fourth grade was the year that I became a cynic and I have my aunt to thank.  One afternoon while watching WWF she walked by and said “You know that’s fake, right?”  I immediately noticed that punches weren’t connecting and stopped watching wrestling that afternoon.

 

Tweet Through It: A Parent’s Experience Through Their Child’s Preschool Christmas Show

While sitting through my nephew’s elementary school Christmas show I decided to be #TwitterFingers and give a play-by-play commentary of the events as they happened. I had to entertain myself through this situation because most of the show was a waiting game until my guy was onstage. Three days later, I had to do it all over again, because it was Cydney’s turn.

Preschool shows are a little different than elementary school ones. There aren’t as many expectations. One expects their kids to do very little and look cute while doing it. Nonetheless, you have to sit through it to see your kid wait their turn to do so. As a musician, I am mentally prepared to hear 99.9% of the children and the notes that they sing to be off-key. As my father said to me yesterday morning, “There’s always hope until you hear the first note.” That was arguably the realest quote I have heard from my father regarding music in all of my thirty years alive, being around it, and ultimately communicating primarily through it.

Cydney Milner is a fucking star…there’s no other way to say it. It is what it is. Yes, she’s my daughter and all; but even if she wasn’t, I would loook at her on that stage and think “That kid right that right there has that “it” factor.” This show was no different.

It was a little sentimental sitting through it. This will be the last child in our family coming through that preschool for some time. I didn’t live in New York when my nephew first started there at least six or seven years ago. However, I did live here when he started his final year; in the same classroom and with the same teacher Cydney currently has. I didn’t think that Cydney or I would be in this place, in New York, and especially without her mom. As I assistend in the clean-up, the director of the school said to my mother and I “This is the last one! Chad, you gotta have another one soon!” I’m getting a lot of that these days.

Enough of the anecdotes, here are the tweets of my first final experience through a Pre-K Christmas show.

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Tweet Through It: A Parent’s Thoughts During Their Child’s Christmas Show

While I don’t get to use the app as much as I used to, I love Twitter. It gives people the chance to express their thoughts in 140 character outbursts. There is nothing in the world like it.

The number one best thing about Twitter is when all factions of #BlackTwitter congregate and give their thoughts about an award show, a major television event, or television show. The second best thing about this wonderful place is watching people “tweet through” the struggle. Sometimes it’s a story, others it’s their heartbreak (the BEST), and then there’s just the need to vent.

Well, yesterday was my nephew’s Holiday Show at his elementary school. It was at 9 am and it’s a show at an elementary school. All of us adults and parents must suffer through all of the terrible performances to sit there and be so damn proud of our children. Seeing them do their best definitely makes the wait worthwhile; but not while you’re sitting there actually waiting. With that said, here is my play-by-play commentary of one of many shows like this that I will have to sit through in my lifetime.

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