7.11 MLK, LeBron, LeJeremy, LeKeith

Oh, Life. You can be devastating but also bewilderingly beautiful. Sometimes I wanna hold a grudge but you have that way of charming me back.

Last night, when Kevin walked in the door, I started blubbering. I haven’t cried in a good long while but oooof! From 9 am to 6:30 pm, I…I have no words. To give you a brief glimpse into the very long and agonizing, heart palpitatious day, lemme leave you with just one of my screaming thought balloons from The Day That Wouldn’t End:

Can Mommy just insert her tampon in a public bathroom without you two MacGyvering out of the stall onto the street!?

With Mommy running seconds behind you, growing two years older in two seconds, heart beating frantically, eyes darting everywhere?

Wondering if God forbid you guys had wandered into the *^&%ing street without me!?

Only to find you in the closest spot outside by the bathroom door, nowhere near the street but sprawled out on the branches of your favorite low hanging NYC sidewalk tree?

As if this tree weren’t a sapling next to a NYC sidewalk but a magical banyan tree in Hawai’i?

As if you two aren’t 3.5 and 21 months old but Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn, chewing on a blade of grass, beaming about the getaway you just pulled off.

hanging out at their favorite tree last month

hanging out at their favorite tree last month

Then 11 other things followed.

Though I’m happy that you two are fast becoming best friends, just like we prayed for, I hope you realize that how fast your mama is aging is directly proportionate to you two egging each other on.

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I took a breather last night. Literally concentrating on taking some deep breaths as I hid out in our bedroom, shaking my head, wondering if I had a Korean drama white washcloth to tie around my head.

Then, this morning, we woke up to a brand new day. Birds chirping, the scent of summer. Blank canvas.

Micah and I took an early morning walk to the mailbox across the street to mail a birthday card. He blew it a kiss as he slipped it into the metal flap. I like to squeeze in a bit of special time with him after our gnarly days. Just to check in with my guy.

On the way back:

“Mommy, when I grow up, my kids will hold my hand like this, right?”

My heart melts into a puddle onto our courtyard. With his perfect little hand in mine, any residue from the previous day is washed away.

“Oh, Micah, yes, you will hold your child’s hand just like this and give it a squeeze just like this!”

“And I will be the Daddy, right?”

“Yes, and I will be the Halmoni and I will hug him and kiss him allllll over, just like this! How many little kiddies do you think you want to have?”

Serious. Thoughtful.


Today also turned out to be a memorable 7.11 Friday in the world of sports. Basketball news strangely reminded me of how my toddler’s (mis)adventures can be forgiven easily by their adorable shenanigans the next moment.

LeBron will be returning home to Cleveland four years after “The Decision,” after literally being burned in effigy and having an open hate letter addressed to him by the Cavs’ owner. My guy friends could not stop spewing venom at LeBron for the last four years.

I didn’t understand all the hatred. Why couldn’t it be all business? I’m not knowledgeable about sports but I do enjoy me a good feature story and today, the sports world delivered a doozy. LeBron’s unexpected return showed me that it ain’t all business, even in this billion dollar industry. He going back home! All is forgiven. No such thing as pride.

And Linsane LeJeremy will be in my hometown of Los Angeles! While he was not reviled like LeBron, he was buried in Houston’s rotation and not given a chance to run his style of offense. (Special thanks to Kevin for supplying that way technical sports sentence above for what I wanted to convey about redemption.)

We were saddened to see him leave NYC for the Houston Rockets but now, he will be in LA where the Asian-Americans will go buck wild. It will feel like World Cup 2002 when we Koreans of Los Angeles were jumping out of our Japanese cars to give each other tearful hugs, from youth to halmonis and halabujees. (I am fully aware that Jeremy ain’t Korean-American but c’mon, throw me a bone, I’ve had a tough week.)

In a totally unrelated baseball event, we also made a quick stop to our neighborhood Citibank thanks to a heads up by Uncle Anthony that Kevin’s beloved Keith Hernandez would be signing autographs. Micah spouted off with, “I don’t like him!” when he saw the macrocephalic, dopey Mr. Met coming our way for photo opps, so we became nervous that upon meeting one of Daddy’s idols, Micah would lash out with, “I don’t like you, Mr. Keith Hernandez,” which would have made it Daddy’s turn to blubber.

When I think of 7.11 next year, I hope to remember my early morning walk with Micah, LeBron, LeJeremy, LeKeith: all the kooky ingredients for a magical, redemptive summer day in NYC.

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John Quinones

As Micah and I strolled to the library this a.m. for our weekly summer storytime, I had to pause because rivers of sweat had deposited into my right eyeball and it stung. I was fidgeting with my eye, hoping we weren’t running late since I couldn’t walk any faster without overheating in today’s heat of 97 degrees, with a “feels like” of 107 degrees and humidity as high as 67%. Okay, I actually don’t know what the ranges are for humidity percentages but now I know that 67% is nasty.

A lady suddenly appeared by my side in a sports bra, running tank top, and spandex pants. At first, as soon as she started talking, I thought she would surely turn out to be one of those scammers who tell you an elaborate story about their car breaking down just blocks away and how they need exactly $13 to get home and that any amount would be helpful. However, she ended up asking, “Do you know a nearby park…

…for jogging?”

Again, I had had to pause because my sweat was pouring fast and furious just from STROLLING LEISURELY. I felt like John Quinones from ABC’s “What Would You Do?” was going to pop out to judge my reaction so I said, “Are you really trying to jog today!?” Surely Mr. Quinones and his camera crew would give me a pat on the back for at least trying to dissuade her. She smiled and said, “Yes.” I reluctantly told her about a park farther away and a reservoir a bit closer since she was on a mission, but added my two cents again: “I really don’t think it’s safe to jog in this heat but please be careful!” I would hope that Mr. Quinones would still gimme credit for trying to stop her.

I had so many questions for her but couldn’t jog after her to ask them.

After the walk to and from the library and an impromptu, quickie playdate before his nap where I got to replenish with some cranberry juice on the rocks, I am now forced to cancel our plans for the afternoon. As much as I want to meet up with our beloved playdates, it is seriously dangerous for us to trek back and forth again. Both summers before my babies arrived are proving to be extra brutal! Although this heat seems to be my muse for blogging – two posts this week!

p.s. Extra emphatic NYC-hating day as we officially lost Jeremy Lin to the Rockets today. Obbaaahhh! We will miss you!