Sunday, May 02, 2010


Some in my family stated this was the first time I was able to keep a secret....and it only took me 26 years. Months ago I bought tickets to fly out to see one of my sisters graduate from college, only I didnt tell any of my family. Weeks upon weeks I kept this special secret from my parents and sisters. Carefully orchestrated with the help of an Aunt, Uncle and cousin I was able to pull of this major feat of secrecy, planning and surprise, flying thousands of miles to show up unexpectedly at this celebration of a major educational accomplishment.

The rain helped. Umbrella in hand, strategically placed in front of my face I walked next to my Aunt, crossing the street to where my family was waiting for her. My youngest sister, standing slightly apart was the first to be alerted to my presence. Slowly moving the umbrella up I looked straight at her and smiled a mischievous smile and smug smile that comes when one pulls the umbrella over the families eyes and is able to get away with a real surprise. She instantly had a smile of surprise on her face and emitted a small squeal of delight. We hugged quickly as my mother approached.

I quickly took a step back and placed the umbrella to block my face once again. As she came up to greet my Aunt I slowly stepped forward umbrella still in place. When we were two feet apart I moved the umbrella to look straight at my Mom. We stared at each other for about two seconds, me with a bemused look on my face and my mother with in quite contemplation and slight confusion. Then she yelled my name and lunged forward to embrace me in a hug.

It is extremely hard to keep anything from my Mother. This is because of two reasons. I am very close to her and therefore we talk dozens of times a week and she is nosy. She will ask you questions until you give in and pour forth your information to get her off your back. Its a talent that my sisters and I have discussed in frustration from time to time. So to not tell my mother and not have her suspect that I had bought tickets months ago to fly from Pacific time to Eastern time to see the family was, in short, a miracle of no small feat. Plus I have been known to blow secrets in the past because I say things accidentally that let the secret slip. Thus the comment from the sister, it was the first secret Ive kept in my twenty-six and a half years.

The weekend away with family has been wonderful. Here on a lake in eastern Michigan Im listening to my Aunt and cousin jam on the drums downstairs, watching my sister lounging on the couch reading a magazine, while I look out at a calming lake and being surrounded by love and laughter and reflecting in quite contemplation. Long weekends away are the best.