Life is full of surprises –  there’s the little things like the new green buds on the tree outside my kitchen window or finding my toddler’s shoe in my older daughter’s lunch kit. And then there’s the things that make me go “Whaaa?!” This week, as part of #3ThingsThursday (hosted by Pink Chai Living, The Write Balance, and Love Laugh Mirch) I’m sharing with you the latter. I’d love to hear in the comments if you were caught off guard by anything this week! And if you’re a blogger and want to link up, please visit any of the hosts’ sites and add your link. I look forward to reading all the posts!

1. being asked about my mom

Sometimes I forget that not everyone knows my mom passed away; it’s such a big part of my life that I am surprised it’s not somehow obvious. I ran into an old college friend at the local pool a couple days ago and we got to chatting, of course. And then he asked me, “How are your parents doing? Are they still in Richmond?” Suddenly I was transported to another life, in which I had two parents who lived together in Richmond. I have not thought of my parents as a unit in eons, and my life growing up with them in Richmond exists on a totally different plane than my current life. I wrinkled my brows, confused for a second. “Oh, nooooo. Actually my mom passed away in 2009 and my dad is remarried and lives in Burnaby.” Then it was his turn to be speechless for a moment. Guess we were both caught off guard!

Along the same vein, yesterday I was waiting outside my son’s preschool for school to be over, enjoying the sunshine, when a grandmother who brings her granddaughter to and from school every day, came over to coochy-coo with my toddler. This is a daily ritual and I love it. So does my girl, and you can see the obvious love in this grandmother’s eyes. We usually make small talk about the weather, or she’ll notice my daughter’s new tooth (seriously, I love this lady!) but yesterday she asked, “Does your mom get to spend a lot of time with your kids?” AND GUESS WHAT I SAID? “Yeah.” To which she replied, “Oh that’s so nice!” with this genuine, warm smile. And then, after my moment of confusion passed, I had to tell her the truth. “I mean, no. She died in 2009. She only got to meet my oldest daughter but died before she was 2.” A little awkward considering my initial reaction.

Being reminded that my mom isn’t around, and worse, that my kids don’t have her to be doted on was REALLY painful. And caught me off guard.

2.  winning the #3ThingsThursday anniversary giveaway from Salma, Raj and Nisha

This was a fabulous “Whaaa?!” although my initial response to Salma’s message was, “SHUT UP!!! Yay!!!” I’m so excited that I won by entering their Rafflecopter. I tweeted my entries every day. I was determined that these fabulous things would be mine. And then I forgot about the giveaway entirely until Salma messaged me yesterday. Totally caught off guard and thrilled with my gift card, notebook/pen from Jaipur, and Kashmiri wood book stand. It’s like they shopped just for me!

Thanks, ladies!

3. when my body went into trauma mode

So, my body does this thing – specifically my neck and upper back – where it seizes up when I’m being totally ignorant to some basic need of mine. Monday night I noticed the right side of my neck was SUPER tight and by Tuesday night the tightness had spread up the back of my head and down between my shoulder blades. The tightness in my neck and head makes my ears pop and I get dizzy, and the general tension ends up spreading to all the joints in my body making for a fair amount of discomfort. Tuesday night was spent in this discomfort. And Wednesday was spent in tears. So much comes up for me in times when my body seizes up. It’s like it takes hold of me, literally, and I have no choice but to examine my emotional state behind this reaction. Now that I’ve had some practice, it’s getting easier to identify which emotions I need to deal with, which means another pile of work in front of me. Thankfully, this time the whole she-bang lasted two days. I am grateful to my body for being such a great communicator (and hope I can avoid further blaring messages in the future). A massage appointment at All Around Fitness & Wellness Centre has been made for tomorrow afternoon, as well as an afternoon of just ‘me’ time.

That’s the thing that’s been missing. I haven’t had the kind of break I need. I thought by getting out more to hang with girlfriends or socialize at events I was adding some balance to my life. Truth is, I’m about as introverted as they get when it comes to what I need to recharge. And for me, it’s solitude and quiet. So, I’m getting myself some of that tomorrow. I have to give a shout-out to my husband who re-arranges everything to help me get what I need. Full circle back to my first point of this post: I really miss my mom who would have totally been a part of raising these kids with us.

If you’re reading this, Mom, (and maybe you are, since my initial reaction was that, yes, you do spend a lot of time with my kids) I hope you know how missed you are. I will forever regret that my kids missed out on you.