Here’s to Love and Laughter & Happily Ever After!

  • This year’s styles definitely are stunners. From princess capes to off the shoulder dresses, to halter necklines, ball gowns, and high collars, this is definitely the year to find the perfect dress for your personal look! All dresses, veils, and jewelry pictured are available at The White Room with locations in Lebanon & Murfreesboro.

We love weddings. Two people, two families, coming together surrounded by those special people in their lives, to celebrate commitment, faith, and a future of hopes and dreams.

So, of course, weddings are a big deal and should be! This year, all the buzz surrounds the royal wedding. What will the American Princess-to-be wear? Who will be her bridesmaids? What fashions will they wear?

Wedding styles have come a long way from when Princess Diana stepped out of the royal carriage in a huge taffeta dress of bows and frills to marry Prince Charles. Today’s bride is a little older, a little more sophisticated and more determined than ever to insure her wedding dress fits her own personal style!

This year, Wilson Living Magazine, set out to find two brides-to-be that embodied this new, independent style for our wedding dress shoot. Nominations were taken from our readers and we were over-run with potential candidates. Ultimately, we chose two girls that were strikingly different to showcase all the latest 2018 wedding trends.

MEET THE GIRLS

Shelby Pomeroy

This gorgeous raven-haired beauty has been dating her fiancé, Evan Shelton, for three years, but they were friends for
two years before that. A hairstylist at Aqua Bella Day Spa & Hair Studio, she definitely knows what her own personal style is. Evan, a mechatronics engineering student at MTSU and employed for Johnson Technologies knew she was the one! The couple were engaged at a Christmas party where everyone was in on the surprise but Shelby. They were playing Dirty Santa where it had been arranged that Shelby would draw the highest number, and go last. She unwrapped her present to find a box that contained a bottle of wine and a note asking her to marry him. When she turned around, Evan was on his knee with a ring. And the rest, as they say, is history . . .

ABOVE: Shelby and fiance’ Evan Shelton plan to wed in 2019.  

Rachel Eatherly

A blonde, brown-eyed stunner, Rachel Eatherly grew up in Wilson County and met her fiancé, Will Painter, while at UT Knoxville. The couple first met in a conservation class, freshman year, but it wasn’t until Sophomore year that they began dating. After graduation, both returned to middle Tennessee, where Rachel is now a UT Extension Agent & Master Gardener Coordinator for Rutherford County and Will is opening, All Things Solutions, in Wilson County. ATS is a maintenance, landscaping and construction company. Flash forward to the summer of 2017, Will had taken Rachel fishing. It was a hot day and nothing was biting. Rachel was ready to go home! Will convinced her to keep fishing just a little longer and said, “try this one”. She turned around to get a different fly to tie on her fishing pole, and instead found Will down on one knee. And so the adventure begins . . .

ABOVE: Rachel Eatherly and Will Painter were married in May 2018.

 

 

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Urban Mills Boutique introduces new bridal registry and must haves for the bridal party!

You’ve set the date and picked the dress. You’ve reserved the venue and paid the deposit. You’ve even created the perfect wedding day hashtag (How does #happilyeverandrews sound?). Getting ready for your big day is quite a planning process. If you’ve taken care of the BIG to-do items on the matrimonial must list, now is the time to start thinking about the registry. The registry is a big deal. After all, you’ve never made a wish list this broad and sometimes pricey. And what if your taste isn’t all KitchenAid stand mixers and Martha Stewart cupcake carriers? That’s why one of Wilson County’s hippest boutiques has introduced their new bridal registry.

Urban Mills Boutique, is located on the Historic Lebanon Downtown Square, carries items that will help you set up housekeeping in style with a registry that makes it convenient for your guests to purchase a gift they know you’ll love.

Brides can choose from many home decorating items for their registry including pillows, candles, candlesticks, picture frames, serving pieces, throws and quilts, canister sets, lamps, art, wall décor, topiaries, succulents, cow hide rugs and poofs, and so much more.

For those brides who haven’t found the perfect dress, Urban Mills also carries one-of-a-kind BoHo Wedding dresses made by The Morgan Factory. These fabulous creations would be perfect for your bohemian themed wedding, engagement photos, bridal showers, etc.

Urban Mills Boutique is located at 126 Public Square, Lebanon, Tn. 615-466-5288 www.urbanmillspromo.com Instagram: @urbanmillsboutique Facebook: @UrbanMillsPromotions&Boutique

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Spotlight on Havana Nights…Volunteers create Cumberland University’s Premiere fundraising event

Story by Laurie Everett

Photos by Heather Graviss Photography

White tuxedos, fedoras, and peacock-colored gowns will grace the 35th anniversary Phoenix Ball benefiting Cumberland University June 2.

“Havana Nights” is the theme this year at this premier charity event in Wilson County that is nearly 100 percent volunteer driven. This is a departure from years past and since the pendulum has swung toward more volunteerism to pull off this gala attended by hundreds of prominent middle Tennesseans, attendance has soared.

There’s been record attendance the past few years. Last year 400 guests attended the gala presented on the Cumberland campus and 2018 Co-Chair Lauren Smith said as of mid-April this year, already more than 400 tickets have been sold, thus breaking last year’s record attendance. Lauren co-chairs with her husband Chris and the couple have long been volunteer committee members.

It’s all about the volunteers and their dedication, said both Lauren and CU Vice President for Advancement Rusty Richardson. Volunteers’ hard work, man hours and pure passion combine during a 12-month process to organize and promote the gala. The proceeds go toward CU scholarships for students and their bright future.

“Volunteers are an important aspect of this fundraiser,” said Richardson. “It started out with volunteers and as they dropped off it became more staff-driven. Now we have abundant volunteers and it shows.”

The first Phoenix Ball was held in 1984 and was created by Mrs. Mary Clement, who, at the time, served as First Lady to CU President Bob Clement.

Today, it’s still the county’s signature black tie (most likely white tie this year) event. And, there are more than 30 dedicated volunteers and their assistants dedicated to making this a signature gala.

               Above: Phoenix Ball 2018 Volunteers

“It’s about more passion and ownership,” Richardson said. “There’s a comradery and they are a team onto themselves.”

For months, the volunteers split into subcommittees such as décor, auction items, and the overall committee which then subdivides further into invitations and sponsorships.

There’s a reception for the dedicated and elite attendees; also a silent and live auction and then a night of dinner and dancing.

This fantasy night of community members supporting CU is fruitful. Richardson said last year’s gross was about $225,000. The spectacular gala cost about $100,000 to present, but the net was $100,000 toward scholarships.

“Our volunteers, to pull this off, are fantastic,” Richardson said. “They are dedicated to making this gala bigger and better. We could not put this on without their time and resources.”

Richardson said organizing this unforgettable event is painstaking.

“From selecting the menu, the lighting, the entertainment and invitations,” said Richardson. Previous themes have been “Catching Dreams,” “A Mid-Summer’s Night Dream,” and last year’s “Fire and Ice.”

This year’s theme is promised to be spicy with a bourbon bar, photo booth and rum rumba. And, possibly, a backdrop of some 1950’s Havana-style roadsters, and if it works out, a cigar lounge.

There are different sponsorship levels still available. Tickets are $250 per person, or $3,500 for a table of 10. Call 615.257.4401 for more information on the Phoenix Ball.

2018 Co-Chairs

 

Volunteers with Cumberland University’s Phoenix Ball for several years, Chris and Lauren Smith are the 2018 co-chairs of the event.

Lauren is an undergraduate and graduate school alum of Cumberland University. She also played tennis for the university.

“We are honored to serve as chairs for the 2018 Phoenix Ball, Wilson County’s premier fundraising event,” said Lauren. “We are working diligently with the planning committee and University staff to make the night of June 2 an evening to remember.”

Lauren said last year’s Ball was a great success and their goal is to “Continue to Rise” with another fun-filled evening to support this historic institution of higher learning.

Chris has a background in convention management, which is a great asset for this prestigious co-chair assignment.

The Smiths live in Mt. Juliet and have two sons; Copelin, 16 and Miles, 8.

Lauren noted this main fundraiser is for scholarships to the university, but a big part of the event is the value of volunteerism as the symbol of the community.

“The fact that this is the 35th anniversary of the Phoenix Ball means so much,” said Lauren. “All of the volunteers give of their time and many of them are sponsors as well. We are excited about Havana Nights and about this historic University and community!”

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Elder Law of Middle Tennessee

Let’s be honest, who wants to take the time to plan for death? It’s a downer. No wonder most of us wait and wait and wait until one day, we are forced to make decisions quickly never knowing if we are signing the right forms or if we’re considering our loved one’s wishes. Death is an uncomfortable subject that most prefer not to explore, but it is an unfortunate fact of life, and eventually, requires some planning.

According to the Social Security Administration each day 10,000 people from the baby boomer generation become eligible for Social Security benefits. So ready or not, many of you reading this article need to start thinking about your own or your parent’s wishes
when it comes to how they would like to be taken care of in the case that they become too ill to manage living alone.

One’s legacy is generally thought of in terms of money. Whether it be land, stocks, life insurance or personal belongings, an estate boils down to financial worth, and it is easy to become overwhelmed with the complexity of that aspect alone.

But what about the rest? Most tend to neglect the other aspects of what is left or not left when our life ends. Death leaves a huge void and often many unanswered questions that can haunt the living, yet it is these aspects that most often go ignored during estate planning.

Principal Attorney with Elder Law of Middle Tennessee J. Barry is an expert in the field of estate planning and says there are several ways that one can plan for the inevitable, but the first thing you must do is start the process. “People should start thinking about planning their estate before they are 45 years old.” Barry continues, “Unfortunately, a great many do not begin to think about it until they are 60 years or older. A lot of times, we don’t want to think about it. Denial isn’t just a river in Egypt, after all.”

Estate planning isn’t just a souped-up term for having a will prepared. Estate planning involves a series of documents specifically written to make sure your loved one (or you!) is taken care of in the event of a major illness or death.

Barry says to make things manageable; there are several documents you should know about and know how they work.

• In estate planning, a Power of Attorney is a legal document that authorizes another person to act on behalf of the person who created the power of attorney if the principal cannot make decisions his or herself.

1. General Power of Attorney- gives broad authorizations to the agent. The agent may be able to make medical decisions, legal choices, or financial or business decisions.

2. Healthcare Power of Attorney- is a document in which you designate someone to be your representative, or agent, in the event you are unable to make or communicate decisions about all aspects of your healthcare. It’s important to note the differences in a medical and general POA. Barry explains, “Some people are better equipped to deal with numbers, and others are better equipped to be a medical advocate. In the most basic form, a health care power of attorney merely says, ‘I want this person to make decisions about my healthcare if I am unable to do so.’”

• Having a Power of Attorney doesn’t mean you’re finished. “A Power of Attorney doesn’t give the person you put in charge capability to create a trust without specific instructions. That’s one of the things we need especially when we are dealing with Tenn Care.” Barry adds, “We might need to create a special government trust where we can move some of the assets and start Tenn Care a little early. This gives them the capability to preserve some of their money and stretch it out and use it alongside government benefits instead of waiting until they only have $2,000 in the bank.”

• A Trust is another document that is becoming more important for estate planning because of the increased need for long-term care planning.

1. Revocable trusts are created during your lifetime and can be altered, changed, modified or revoked entirely. Although useful to avoid probate, a revocable trust is not an asset protection technique as assets transferred to the trust during your lifetime may remain available to creditors.

2. Irrevocable Trust is one which cannot be altered, changed, modified or revoked by the trustmaker of the trust. Normally, once a property is transferred to an irrevocable trust, the trustmaker, cannot take the property out of the trust. This type of trust is often used to protect assets for someone who has a disability.

3. Testamentary Trust-part of will or another trust that will go into effect when you pass away.

• A Will is a document many of us already have. If you don’t, Barry says you need to add it to the TOP of your to-do list. “If you don’t make out a will, the state will determine where your assets go.” Just like a Power of Attorney, there are several types of Wills.

1. Simple Wills-A simple will distributes property from the estate of a testator whose finances and desires for distribution are uncomplicated. A simple will should include the testator’s name, address and marital status; statements indicating which assets are to go to which beneficiaries; a section appointing an executor for the estate and a guardian for the testator’s minor children if the other parent is dead; and places for the testator and two or three witnesses (depending on which state you live in) to print and sign their names. There are very specific procedures for executing a will in Tennessee as well as an affidavit for the witnesses.

2. Testamentary Trust Wills (see: Testimentary Trust Will above)-A testamentary trust will is a will that puts at least some of your distributions into a trust. A trust distributes your assets to a beneficiary but is normally administered by a third person who controls when and how the property is distributed to the trust beneficiary. You might establish a spendthrift trust, for example, for the benefit of a financially irresponsible beneficiary. The trust administrator may distribute the trust assets gradually instead of presenting them to the beneficiary in a lump sum. Although the estate executor and the trust administrator may be the same person, they do not have to be. The format of a testamentary trust will be similar to that of a simple will.

3. Living Will- Unlike other types of wills, a living will does not distribute property after the death of the testator. Instead, it gives instructions on what type of medical treatment you wish to receive if you become too ill to communicate. For example, you might state that if you become terminally ill and unconscious, you don’t want to be hooked up to a feeding tube even if you would die without it. The formal requirements for a living will are more flexible than for a testamentary will, but in Tennessee, it should be notarized or witnessed in front of two people with specific rules as to who may witness the living will.

• These are straightforward things that can be done starting today. It’s as simple as making a call to the experts at Elder Law of Middle Tennessee. It will give you peace of mind when considering the inevitable and will provide your loved ones with answers and eliminate doubt if something should happen to you suddenly, and you are unable to express the things you need to. While you can never be replaced, money can be a lifesaver for your grieving family left behind.

TO SET UP AN APPOINTMENT ESTATE PLANNING CONSULTATION Call 615-444-3568 Elder Law of Middle Tennessee 115 N Castle Heights Ave #101 Lebanon, TN 37087 www.elderlawofmiddletennessee.com

“This is not a substitute for legal counsel. It is very important that you work with an attorney with your specific situation and so that the attorney can ask you the right questions about your matter. The law changes from state to state and a slight fact pattern change will produce very different legal advice.”

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It’s getting ‘HOT’ in Wilson County!

  • Hot Yoga Lebanon owner, Heather Landers
  • Landers passion for health led her decision to open Wilson County's first and only hot yoga studio in June 2017
  • Heather is pictured here with her mother, who happens to be her hero too.
  • The whole gang. Heather and her husband and little boy, Wilson pose for a group photo with the rest of the family. Greg, Heather and Wilson, Heather’s parents Carl and Judy Jones, Chad’s son (Heather’s nephew) Connor, Heather’s sister and brother-in-law Valerie and Joe Nokes with their daughters Bell and Nora (Heather’s nieces)
  • Heather, her husband Greg, and their son Wilson

By Becky Andrews

Odds are this isn’t the first time you’ve come across the term hot yoga. Over the past several years, it’s become a popular fitness practice that people are participating in all over the country. Thanks to Wilson County native, Heather Landers, hot yoga has finally landed in Lebanon. And with each class at capacity or waitlist, it’s safe to say, our area is getting more Zen by the day.

If you haven’t made it to your first class at Hot Yoga Lebanon (shame on you!), you might have a few questions. What can it do for me? Will it help me build muscle or lose weight? The answer in a nutshell (or Killer Praying Mantis for yoga aficionados) can be found in two simple words; be still. “Everyone is so busy. Even when you work out, your phone is buzzing, the television is on, earbuds are in, you’re checking
your smartwatch to see how many calories you’re burning” Heather continues, “it’s hard to stay focused. You can lose yourself in the day-to-day. But showing up on your mat, focusing on breathing, and making a commitment to spend one hour with yourself can change you in a
big way.”

Landers utilizes a state of the art heating system that combines heat and humidity, the signature environment of her hot yoga classes. This type of heat causes blood flow to your muscle tissue to increase, making your muscles more flexible and therefore less prone to injury
as you work on building up your overall body strength. In short, yoga can offer a safe alternative for building muscle.

Landers began her yoga practice 13 years ago to improve her running performance in the full marathons she entered regularly. Hot yoga provided the environment to help her breathe correctly in Tennessee’s signature humidity and heat. But it turns out that the breathing helped her with much more. “There were a series of events in my life where I could have very well drowned in sadness, but I didn’t. My practice became my lifeline.”

Heather points to heated yoga as being especially helpful in the development of mindfulness, a state of being that is rooted in the present moment and eschewing judgment. Like so many of us, Heather spent too much time focusing on how her body looked, but with mindful-
ness she began to love her body for what it was able to do and not how it looked. That’s what she hopes devoted HYL yogis are discovering in their practices. “Developing mindfulness can do a lot to counteract feelings of shame and doubt that may come with struggling with one’s
weight.” Heather adds, “God didn’t make us to look like everyone else. When you look into that mirror and see yourself without comparison to anyone, that’s where you begin.”
And no matter what you’ve heard, Hot Yoga is suited for any skill level. While most of the classes offered at Hot Yoga Lebanon are heated, there are a few low heat alternatives.  To keep up with demand, Heather says she hopes to expand in the next year or two. In addition to a variety of workshops, paddleboard yoga and pre and postnatal yoga will be added to the schedule.
In today’s fast-paced, social media-laden, beauty, wealth and success-obsessed world, Hot Yoga Lebanon offers a welcome refuge to turn the noise off and focus on being still.

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Fashion forward for your bridesmaids

This year’s trends are chicer than ever and definitely more fashion-forward than in year’s past. Once again, the theme is individuality. Who says bridesmaids all have to wear the same thing? Not anymore. Now, more than ever, brides are allowing their bridesmaids to choose the styles and colors that look best on them. Emerald green, to navy, to stunning red, to subtle taupe and pinks…nothing is off limits.   Meet the Girlies! This year we gathered a small group of graduating Seniors as our bridesmaid models. But these weren’t just any Seniors. We’ve known these beauties since they were tiny tots! Together since their grade school years, these young ladies are a fun, smart, tight-knit group of friends who are about to graduate and embark on their own adventures. So when we needed eight models for a photo shoot they were all in! And were the perfect mix of tall and petite, dark and blond. The perfect combo to showcase the varying styles and looks of bridesmaids fashions.

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WLM 2018 Bridal Issue

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Wilson Living Magazine Summer 2018

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Sometimes dad forgets…

By Becky Andrews

There’s an episode of “The Golden Girls” where Sophia befriends a man on the boardwalk in the Miami town the show takes place. In a pivotal scene, her new friend becomes confused and frustrated. Later, Sophia learns that he has Alzheimer’s Disease. I remember watching this episode years ago and thinking how sad it was, but that’s it. I couldn’t relate. I didn’t get it. Now I do.

Above: My dad, Ralph and his favorite child; Becky. (C’mon! I had to add that!)

My dad has a great story. He was an Italian Yankee who moved down south to attend college on a football scholarship at Western Carolina University. That’s where he met my mom. “Italian Yankee” was my grandmother’s nickname for him. (Actually, the real nickname she had for him was inappropriate.)  She didn’t care for him when she met him for the first time. She hated him when he moved her only daughter and only grandson to Tennessee after he and mom graduated. That’s another story altogether.

Dad was hardworking. While he wasn’t perfect, he loved his wife and kids with fierce devotion. He was strict and protective and funny and loving and strict and strict and suspicious. Suspicious mostly of his teenage children. We were guilty until proven innocent. In fact, all teenagers were guilty until proven innocent.

In 2012, dad got the diagnosis. First, his specialist thought it was Lewy Body dementia. After more tests, they settled on vascular dementia. It didn’t matter what they called it. Each one shared the same sad ending. We knew life for all of us would never be the same.

The worst day was when he realized what was happening. “I think I know what’s wrong with me, but I don’t want to talk about it, ok?” So, we didn’t.

Most of the time he was perfectly fine. We would even think the doctors were wrong. Then he would tell a story about how he stopped a “stick up” in the Kroger parking lot at 3 am or give a detailed account of his trip to Hawaii the week before. Even going so far as trying to find the slides he took while visiting. Guys, he’s never been to Hawaii. He’s still fine. Most of the time he handles his normal with cool indifference.

Last week, dad fell at home. I was with him. In fact, he fell on the kitchen floor that I had just mopped. It was kind of my fault. For the few minutes it took to get him up, I must have told him “I’m so sorry” 100 times. I even started to cry. He finally said, “Stop it with the ‘sorrys!’ Help me get up! Why are you crying?! I’m the one that fell!” We went to the ER, and dad was fine. No broken bones. No stitches. Nothing.

If you have cared for anyone living with progressive dementia, you know that it’s the hiccups in daily routines that create the perfect environment for an incident. The incident results in your loved one traveling a little bit further down the rabbit hole.

Four days after the fall, dad called. I knew this tone of voice. He was nervous.

Dad- “I think I’ve hurt my neighbor’s feelings. We just passed each other, and he didn’t say anything.”
Me- “Why do you think you hurt his feelings?”
Dad- “We were talking at the morning coffee, and he kept talking over me. I think I said something like, ‘Jesus, do you ever shut up?!’”
A phrase, I must admit, I’ve wanted to say to my dad on a few occasions.
Me- “Do you think maybe you had a dream? Dreams can feel real sometimes. It happens to everyone.”
Dad- “You’ve had dreams where you’ve told my neighbor to ‘shut the hell up!’”?
Me- “No, I’ve had bad dreams that seemed very real. It bothers me even after waking up.”
Dad- “I don’t think this was a dream, Becky. I don’t ever want to hurt anyone’s feelings.”

I called his neighbor to check. He reassured me that nothing happened. He did tell me that dad had asked him the same question a couple of weeks ago. This sweet man, who has become one of dad’s closest friends, even stopped by later that day  to check on us.

The following morning, dad told me about the dream again. To him, it was real. He was adamant. I told him we talked to his neighbor and he said nothing happened. Dad’s facial expression went from confusion to sadness. Where he didn’t recognize the difference between a dream and reality, he did silently acknowledge that whatever has been taking pieces of him, isn’t finished. He let his head drop, defeated. Those are the heartbreaking moments.

Later, I was flipping through the channels and stopped on “Nik at Nite” where I caught the end of that episode of “The Golden Girls” I mentioned earlier. Sophia looks at her daughter Dorothy and says, “People think if you live to be my age, you should be grateful just to be alive. That’s not how it works. You need a reason to get up in the morning and sometimes when you find one; life can turn around and spit in your face.” Now I get what she meant.

It’s been one week since he fell and it’s the third morning in a row that he hasn’t mentioned the dream. He’s back to working out at the gym. He’s back to writing down everything he eats. He’s back to calling me ten times in the morning and night to make sure I’m not texting and driving. He’s back to telling me the dark lipstick I wear “looks like something a prostitute would wear.” He’s back to being a dad again. I’m so glad that’s something that is proving hard to forget.

There’s my dad. He’s pretty cool. He knows it too. 

 

Comments? Email becky@wilsonlivingmagazine.com

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The other ‘F’ word…

By Becky Andrews

When my youngest child was six- months old, my little sister came for a visit. One of her many visits
trekking from the northwest to Tennessee that summer. That was the last summer we had we our mom.

When I picked her up from the airport, she asked how I was doing. “I’m fine,” I responded.
With a laugh, she said, “When I started labor and delivery rotation in nursing school, one of my
professors told us that fine is just an acronym for Frustrated Insecure Neurotic Exhausted.”

I don’t like to brag, but I WAS NAILING IT! FINE was my jam.

So every time someone says, “I’m fine” that’s what I think of.  Maybe it’s just easier to say what we think
someone wants to hear instead of going into a 30-minute rant about how life stinks sometimes.

With social media pages that showcase photographic evidence of how fabulous life is, it’s no wonder no
one wants to reveal those warts. If we tell the truth about our less than perfect life, kids, jobs, in-laws,
we then become what we fear most…human. If you are anything other than fine, you’ve failed at this.
Whatever this is.

How’s the new baby?
“He’s perfect. A gift from God. I don’t know what we did before he/she was here. I feel complete. I was
made to nurse. Bloody nipples be damned! My baby is going to be a genius because of me.”
That’s wonderful! How are you?
“Me? I’m fine. I get to watch the sun rise and set and rise and set. I can’t remember the last time I
showered, but I’ve discovered that a baby wipe shower works great in a pinch. I’m totally fine.”

I’ve perfected the art of being fine since having children. I was fine when our oldest didn’t want to learn
his letters in preschool. I was fine when he didn’t get invited to a friend’s birthday party in first grade
(This is a lie. I’ll never get over that.) I was fine when he started high school. I was fine when he started
driving and dating. I was fine when he made stupid teenager mistakes that left my gut steaming with
worry. I was fine when he experienced his first heartbreak. I was fine when he graduated from high school. I was fine when he went on his first road trip with friends without REAL adult supervision. I was fine when he came home from that unsupervised trip with something pierced! (That’s a lie. I was pissed. He was smart enough to remove “the ring” before coming home, but still stupid enough to let a friend post it on Instagram.) I was fine when we moved him into his college dorm. I’m fine now even though I have no idea if he’s washed his sheets since we moved him into that dorm more than six months ago. I’m fine not knowing or having any control over what he’s doing while away from my admittedly overbearing, watchful eye. I’ve been the walking embodiment of FRUSTRATED INSECURE NEUROTIC EXHAUSTED more times than I’d like to admit. And I’m sure I will feel the sting of that acronym with my youngest who will begin high school in a few short months. Today I am fine. Really!

For now, I’m done with the “How are you” questions. Common sense and a little life experience prove
that you are probably not fine if you just lost a parent or a job or if you just had a baby eight days ago or
your oldest child only came home from college THREE TIMES DURING HIS FIRST SEMESTER OF COLLEGE! You are entitled to feel all those inconvenient, complicated emotions that go hand in hand with being human.
You know, the ones that are left out of our Snap Chat stories. Because even if things aren’t really “fine” now, it will be eventually. But don’t get too cocky when things are going well. And don’t say, “My kid would never…” As soon as you utter those words, little Kevin might be headed home with some shiny new
hardware on his nipple!

Comments? Email becky@wilsonlivingmagazine.com

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