The Nothing’s

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I grew up on the south side of town AKA the wrong side of town with divorced parents that struggled financially. Actually my Mom provided for us more than my Dad ever did.

My brother and I learned quickly that we had to work hard to earn money. There were times when my Mom would get us Happy Meals at McDonald’s and she would go without eating. It was a special treat for us to get McDonald’s. Of course I would ask Mom why she wasn’t eating and she would just tell me “I had a big lunch” or “I’m not hungry”.

Later in life a lightbulb went off in my brain…she didn’t eat because she couldn’t afford it. That’s love. This past year I wrote my Mom a letter and mailed it to her a few days before Christmas. I went over many memories in that letter telling her how much I appreciated the things she did for us. I mentioned I knew why she never got herself a happy meal and how I knew how much she loved us putting us before her own needs. She called and said she didn’t know I ever knew. She never wanted us to know she struggled.

I’m so so happy that I didn’t grow up wealthy. You know what stands out the most to me from my childhood? The moments we spent time together from shoveling coal into our wood burning stove to washing her car. She always though of free things to do to keep us entertained.

We used to sit on top of her 1979 mint green cougar at the airport runway watching the planes come and go.

We made Christmas ornaments with glitter and sweetgum tree balls.

We would put on funny skits that we would make up using her old records like The Beach Boys, Elvis and The Beegees.

It’s the little moments in life that are so spectacular to me.

I might come from nothing but the nothing’s were everything to me. These nothing’s turned me into extraordinary and very grateful. 

Appreciate every single thing loves. It’s all happening for a reason. That reason is growth and happiness.

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42 comments

  1. Wendy · March 3, 2016

    Gratitude is a powerful force, isn’t it? It’s not about what you have, it’s about what you appreciate.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. sonofabeach96 · March 3, 2016

    Awesome post! I’m a bit jealous in that you have a mom you want to thank. I bet that letter made her day.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lennon Carlyle · March 3, 2016

      She made quite a few mistakes but we all do. I think it meant a lot to her.

      Liked by 1 person

      • sonofabeach96 · March 3, 2016

        I’m sure. Of course she made mistakes. Everybody does. But it sounds as if she sacrificed for you, loved you, and enjoyed you. That’s the most important thing. That’s what I’m jealous of.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Lennon Carlyle · March 3, 2016

        Not sure your story but I bet there are quite a few people that love you. You know something? I bet your ass you’re an amazing parent and show love daily to your boys 💙

        Liked by 1 person

      • sonofabeach96 · March 3, 2016

        I suppose my parents love me, are. I’ll have to take their word for that. As for my parenting, not to brag, but I’m a great dad to these boys. I screw up and make mistakes and don’t know if I’m coming or going half the time. But these boys know that they and their mom are my world. Like I said, that’s what matters. 🙂
        As for my story, it’s likely not too different from a lot. Absentee dad, narcissistic mom, divorced when 7-8, used as a pawn, tossed from here to there, me being the “adult” like 95% of the time even though I was 10. Men du jour, moving frequently based on which of those men would take us in, yada, yada, yada. Not a unique story, I’m sure. But you know what? None of the shit they pulled ended up defining me, so take that fuckers! I know I sound bitter, but I’m really not. I just deal with them as little as possible. Well that made a short story long, huh? :/

        Liked by 1 person

      • Lennon Carlyle · March 3, 2016

        Wow, it’s amazing how much our families are a like. My Mom did the best she could but she left us a few times to take off with “Mr. Right” – come to think about it, there were a few Mr. Right’s. She told us not to tell anyone she was gone. I was eleven the first time she did it. My brother was 8 so I had to take care of him and myself for two weeks. My Dad, he just wasn’t in the big picture of anything. Anyway, now you’ve got your own kids and know what NOT to do. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      • sonofabeach96 · March 3, 2016

        Amen! Life can be a bitch of a teacher, but thorough. 😃

        Like

  3. Jim · March 3, 2016

    money woulda ruined you and you wouldn’t be as cute as you are now. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lennon Carlyle · March 3, 2016

      Ha! I don’t know about cute but you’re right. Money would’ve ruined me.

      Like

  4. Kevin J. Hotter · March 3, 2016

    Right on! Nicely said.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Dr Meg Sorick · March 3, 2016

    Love this. A good parent is better than anything money can buy. You were wealthier than you knew! 😍

    Liked by 1 person

  6. bensbitterblog · March 3, 2016

    What a great mom you have. Sounds like she is worthy of a mighty fine mother’s day card! Maybe even a nice brunch complete with a Happy Meal?

    Liked by 1 person

  7. acquiescent72 · March 3, 2016

    Our roots are so powerful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lennon Carlyle · March 3, 2016

      They really are….thank you for reading and commenting!

      Liked by 1 person

    • tarnishedsoul · July 4, 2016

      I’ll reiterate this point (That’s me up above, but I deleted that blog).

      Liked by 1 person

      • Lennon Carlyle · July 4, 2016

        I sort of knew that. Seems like you’re opening yourself up more on this blog. The Tarnished Soul is a better name too 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      • tarnishedsoul · July 5, 2016

        Yes, well, I’m a little tired being a whiney little birch. 😝

        Liked by 1 person

      • Lennon Carlyle · July 5, 2016

        Well, we all have our whiney moments now don’t we? That’s what these blogs are for. Let it all out my friend. Sometimes our whiney moments make for the best posts 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • tarnishedsoul · July 5, 2016

        …and the most comical, I’m sure. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Jonathan · March 3, 2016

    You can’t buy a good time, or happy memories. Our upbringing was surprisingly similar – we didn’t have a lot either – and my parents are very probably where I get my work ethic from too. The whole wealth thing reminds me of “Notch” – the guy that invented Minecraft. He sold out to Microsoft and became a billionaire overnight, and then discovered what we all know – that money doesn’t make you happy. At all.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lennon Carlyle · March 3, 2016

      Hey!!!! Yes the strong work ethic is so important and I’m thankful my parents taught me that.

      Like

  9. Chanz Robie · March 5, 2016

    I read this and it just reminded me of my mom. You have a great mom, I’m glad you appreciate that. Great piece.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Deb · March 5, 2016

    Ironic isn’t it, that from Nothing you gained Everything! Love how life works like that!! You have so many beautiful memories, the real ones that you will treasure your whole life. Your Mom is a very special person, I can tell by her daughter’s writings! She must be as proud of you as you are of her! Wonderful!!

    Like

    • Lennon Carlyle · March 5, 2016

      Thank you so much Deb for reading and commenting. She is very special to me. Have a great weekend!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Deb · March 5, 2016

        Thank you, wishing you a fun weekend too!

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Deb · March 9, 2016

    Coming from nothing, I appreciate everything. Best lesson in gratitude ever.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Lady G · July 4, 2016

    A good mother does EXACTLY what your mother did!
    Speaking for moms I can say that sometimes we have to go without and other times we have to make a way out of NO way— and the list goes on.
    But guess what? Your mom made it magical and both of you gained so much from those experiences. My hat’s off to her!
    I’ll bet she would do it all again if she had to.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lennon Carlyle · July 4, 2016

      Oh Honey, I can tell you’re an incredible Mom! Your kid is so blessed and entertained of course 😂

      Like

  13. Sophia Ball · July 5, 2016

    I find that the best people come from difficult times. If you have to grow up fighting for it, you are forged a survivor. It can be an unfortunate gift, but a gift nonetheless. Sounds like you had a great mom. Xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Lennon Carlyle · February 18

    Reblogged this on Fabulous With Glitches and commented:

    On this day last year I posted this….warms my heart.

    Like

  15. Jonathan · February 19

    Our biggest struggle with our own children is teaching them the value of money. It’s difficult for us, because we live in a town where a lot of people are either wealthy, or pretend to be wealthy. The most maddening are those that obviously survive through family funds, so have no work ethic what-so-ever, but miraculously go on spectacular holidays, and have nice things…

    Liked by 1 person

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