A Maggie Moment: Season’s changes


by Maggie Modjeski, columnist

I’ve always been a fan of Fran Edstrom’s stories about the “Dog who shall not be named,” so I am pretty excited to be filling column space that she graced for so many years. I’ve even coined the phrase WWFD (What would Fran do?) at moments when I question proper etiquette in social situations. I’m not quite sure what the etiquette is for jumping from one news outlet to the competitor, but it’s not like I’m Ann Landers so I’m not going to worry too much about it.

Why the name A Maggie Moment? Because frequently I find myself in unique situations like decorating a weed in the highway for Christmas or most recently creating a large ruckus about a satellite toilet (aka Porta Potty). By the way, the new spot to go at Lake Winona is just outside the Visitors Center, conveniently located next to parking and open 24 hours a day to accommodate all.

My husband shakes his head, my children typically scatter when I have an idea, hoping people don’t realize we are related. While Fran had the “Dog who shall not be named,” my family hopes they are the “Children and husband who shall not be named.”

It has been a season of change in our household, not just from summer to fall or moving from one news outlet to another, but from a family of five under one roof to four.

We took our oldest to college a few months ago, four hours away, and four hours of ugly crying on the way home. What is ugly crying? The kind that requires a lot of Kleenex, and odd looks from those around you as you try not to bawl and end up making even worse noises through your nose. This type of crying makes your eyes swollen and face red for days afterward.

I’ve survived the past few months, getting into new routines, buying fewer groceries, sending continual Amazon shipments to him (the new version of care packages) as well as texting daily. This past weekend he even made a trip home and though he’s only been gone a few months, the change is remarkable — just little things you don’t notice about someone when you see them daily.

He’s become much more laid back, allowing his roommate to leave his half of the room a mess, something he would never tolerate from his brother, and he has become less particular about his diet, probably a result of having to buy many of his groceries out of his own wallet — ramen isn’t so bad at a quarter a package.

I enjoy that he confides in us, though I’m not sure I’m ready to hear him speak too much like an adult. There are just some things a mother does not want to know, ever.

Not to be left out of the story, our other two children have adapted well. Our middle came home from the college drop off and rearranged the bedroom to his liking. As he took over his brother’s bed it was the first time I ever saw him willingly change sheets and bedding without being told to.

Our youngest doesn’t like to admit it but she has missed her brother, also known as her arch enemy. She has taken to sharing her new teenage attitude out on me. The girl can roll those eyes more often than anyone I have ever met.

We’ve survived the season’s changes so far, and know there will be more to come. With that being said I’m happy to join the team at the Winona Post and hope to live up to the legacy of previous writers who have graced this page.


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