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"There and Back Again" - A Mother's Tale by Elizabeth Baggins (Gilbert)

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Deep in the beautiful country side of northern Texas (that alone is a beautiful fictional read isn't it), a mother stumbles out of bed as her alarm rings at 6:55am. That ring, that golden ring that has brought everyone misery for years and decades is forcing us to climb out of our comfy, cozy nooks and make the same trek we've made before. After a long, groanful journey down the hallway, I find my small hobbit (my precious) lying in the bed hiding under a sheet hopeful I won't find her.

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"Come on, sweet one it's time to go." I pull the sheet off her to find her giggling and shaking her head.

"I thought that would work this time!" She says, as if the magic from the fairies and elves betrayed her. Preparing for our trek is long, as we dress, eat our bread and mead -- Apple juice come on I'm not crazy yet... and our bread is with melted butter because we're not savages, we're hungry for toast -- we brush hair and try to look the part of non-exhausted minions forced to follow ... the ring.

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As we leave our abode, the heat of Sauron's fury washes over us and seeing as we live in Texas he sure is angry several months out of the year isn't he? I groan and close the front door while my sweet hobbit giggles and points to two snails along the ground. She speaks like sweet bells telling me how she wants to keep them in a giant jar, and I look at the two whispering to myself "Hurry to the mines of Moria...for your fate must be better there than in the hands of this wee one."  For trust me I know my daughter well, and I know that those snails will slowly grow hungry and desperate for first dinner and they will forget what second dinner even meant.

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Oh how I long for the temperatures to be below 80 in the morning, I miss the feeling of the cool air as the door swings open. The smell of cool dew on grass and fireplaces already burning. Perhaps we are forgetting to "Speak friend and enter" when we enter Sauron's cruel heated world, though as a mother I'm about to take a belt to Sauron's behind if he continues to torture us. We begin our walk, the long, treacherous journey through concrete terrain and tall weeds avoiding dangerous ants and highly horrific inchworm graveyards. As we walk, I hear tales of previous adventures from my hobbit, her smile as we discuss how she plans to continue to learn proper fighting for her battles and how I fully intend to...grab a cold drink and sit in my home hiding from Sauron for the next 24 hours.

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As we come to the end...I can feel it. The heat pouring over me. The sweat dripping along my entire body making me groan knowing I look like a fat pig in a wet shirt. The anticipation of her releasing to the destination for the end is just in sight. With a hug, a kiss, an eskimo kiss, a forehead kiss, and a hand created "heart" that shakes back and forth, we exchange our love and then...she turns. One foot in front of the other, I watch as she makes her way through rocky busted terrain, branches lying broken in her way. She turns at the end of the path, and waves and blows a kiss to which I reciprocate. My eyes never leave her as she crosses the stone road and she goes along the edge of Mount Doom...a few steps...she climbs up stairs, turns...another wave and a kiss. I stare in desperation wanting cool air and a nice place to sit but I watch my precious go. As she turns the corner finding herself no longer in danger but stepping into a cool, calm Rivendell, I turn and take a deep breath...

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I lower my head, my neck cracks and I roll my shoulders as I stare down my final battle. For I begin my swift, sturdy walk back to my safe haven feeling Sauron staring at me as I go. He laughs evily forcing another blasting wave of heat making me stumble on a rock and I gasp grateful not to fall. He beats me down with anger for soon I will no longer be in his grasp and I turn walking as quickly as I can (FYI - If you want to speed walk, turn on Alan Parson's "Sooner or Later" and walk to the beat, yeah trust me it's a journey in itself to keep up with that!).

I tell myself to keep going, don't look up for he will stare you down with a sadistic, evil...well he's an eyeball just how bad can it be? You look up to find the eye (sun) radiating down on you hoping to make you collapse but instead, you look to the right... and smile...

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Home...I come in and let out a breath of relief. I have slain the evil that burns this terrain. I have defeated the heat. I have let my precious hobbit get to her educational destination...and now I have to work. But I am proud to have conquered the evils of the kingdom and I shall rise again! For I am... a Mother and I have made the trek there...and back again...



Elizabeth is a wife to her wonderful husband, a work at home mother to her beautiful little girl and a blogger for some time now. When she isn't spending time with her "Livvybug", or laughing with her husband, she is looking for new review opportunities and writing or singing along to classic rock and pop music!

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