Thursday, April 30, 2009

Sending in the Troops

Two days ago E came home with a math paper that she had to redo because she had gotten the problems wrong. She looked at me with the saddest eyes and told me it made her feel dumb. I looked right back at her and told her that she wasn't dumb, that her teacher had made a bad choice in sending her out of math and her daddy and I fully blame her teacher, not her. I also told her that her daddy and I should have not allowed her to go to the gifted class during math, so we were to blame, too. I assured her that we would work harder on her math and she would catch up. I think this must have set something free in her because that night she took me aside before she went to bed and told me about some issues she was having with two of the boys in her class FOR THE PAST 6 WEEKS. She is in a reading group with them and apparently they have been yelling at her. When I asked why she didn't tell her teacher, she said people have to flip cards (a form of discipline) for tattling.

Actually, let me back up, she is in a reading group with 4 boys and her. It used to be 5, but one moved away. FOUR BOYS AND ONE GIRL!!! For those of you going "What's the big deal?", look online at all the statistics that show girls need to be in mixed gender groups or single gender groups. A teacher in his or her right mind would go out of his or her way to mix up the groups, even a little. I was talking to the second grade teachers at my school about this and they were just aghast!

Anywho, these boys have been preventing her from doing her assignment and when she tries to take part they yell at her. I emailed her teacher and used the big words, like "bully" and "aggressive behavior" words that by our state law demands actions on the school's part. Her teacher took her and the two boys in question into the office and essentially told E that the boys were not "teasing her" (E's term) but merely correcting her, as they are told to do. The teacher said it is the students' responsibilty to correct other students when they see someone doing something wrong. E was then made to APOLOGIZE to the boys. E was taught by her teacher at that moment that it is okay to let people treat you badly.

HELL NO!!!!!!!!

I told her in no uncertain terms that that was not okay and she is to speak up if it happens again.

Hubby went in to the school today and requested a conference for tomorrow morning. Why, you might ask am I not going? Well, I have a violent temper and I am not sure that I can manage myself in an adult manner. Seriously. I am so pissed off by this turn of events that I have been having nightmares where I am just screaming and yelling at people. But, we are not a Jerry Springer family and we will not let a teacher turn E into one. So Hubby, the more even-keeled one of us, is going in. If he isn't satisfied, his next move will be straight into the principal's office. And if that doesn't work, he's going to tell them they don't want me getting involved because I'll take it all the way to the superintendent of schools. And I will. I once had a bank VP write a personal letter of apology to me and sanction an employee because I get that tough and dogged.

I am not going to make it as a parent. I'm just glad I came off the topamax a couple of weeks ago. It was making me feel agressive and I was losing my hair. I can only imagine what would have happened if I hadn't stopped it. Because right now, I just want to take that teacher by her hair and swing her into a wall. And that's without the medicated aggression.


Monday, April 27, 2009


Hubby gave me the most beautiful red Fender Sonora guitar for my birthday. It was shocking and exciting and scary, all rolled into one. Now I really have to learn how to read music and put my money where my mouth is! It's weird to have wanted something for so long and to finally attain it. It was way more money than we can afford so now I have to rise to be worthy of it!


About a year and a half ago we had to put our dog to sleep. It was a traumatic and painful time in our life since we adopted her before we got married. It was like an end of an era. She gave us some good memories and a lot of laughs, and something happened today that reminded me of her.

Her name was Sadie and she was an abused animal that we rescued from the shelter. When we first got her she had horrible separation anxiety and cost us thousands of dollars the first month. She ate a hole into our couch, destroyed our mattress, tore apart the back of our bedroom door, devastated every single venetian blind and curtain in our apartment...twice... and mangled a cage built for a dog twice her weight. It was a stressful time, but with love and attention she settled into one of the best dogs ever. But, she never liked delivery people or postal people, specifically UPS.

When we first got married, Hubby and I lived on a second floor apartment 4 blocks from the ocean. We lived in a quiet little tourist town that was so safe we left our back door open to allow Sadie access to the backyard whenever she wanted. When we were home we left our front door open with only the screen door keeping Sadie in. We had never had a problem with her and the screen door when people came to the door, because she was a fairly big dog and people respected that, until the day our mail carrier decided to make a horrible mistake.

Sadie was lying on the floor by the screen door with her nose pressed against the screen when the mail carrier walked up the flight of stairs to our door to deliver a package. I was sitting on the couch where he couldn't see me and was about to stand up to go to him when all of a sudden he saw Sadie, put the package down and put his hands on the screen and yelled "Boo!" at her. To this day I still don't know why he did that, but Sadie reared up, let out a terrifying low bawl (she was a blue tick hound) and rushed the screen door, knocking it off its hinges, straight at him. The man had nothing but the screen door (which was fast approaching him) between them and he took off running down the steps, jumped in his car and drove off as fast as he could. The screen door got stuck at the top of our entranceway and Sadie could go no farther. But from then on, any package that was delivered to us from that post office had the words BIG DOG scrawled in big letters.

But it was the poor UPS driver that probably still tells this story today. Once again we had the screen door open and Sadie was lying on the floor when the UPS truck stopped just a few houses down the street. I was in the kitchen and didn't hear it pull up until it was too late. I heard a strange whooshing, then tearing sound and went rushing into the living room thinking someone was trying to enter our apartment. Oh, how I wish that had been the case. Sadie had once again knocked the screen door of its hinges, only this time it was pushed to the side and Sadie was down the stairs and chasing after the driver who had just walked away from the door where he had delivered his package. I called to Sadie but she was on a mission. All I could do was warn the driver.

"GET BACK IN THE TRUCK!" I screamed. The driver looked at me and gave me a friendly wave.

"GET BACK IN THE TRUCK...NOW!" I tried again. The man looked at me with a funny look, but still just thought I was crazy. Finally, I decided brevity was the best course of action.

"DOG!!!!!!" I hollered and pointed at his silent attacker just about to grab his leg. He jumped into his truck just as Sadie got to it and he pulled away, almost hitting her in the process. About this time I finally caught her and tried to signal sorry into his rearview mirror, but he was gone.

Needless to say, we never left the screen door open again after that.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

As I was saying....

If you remember this former post:

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Going on Record
Okay, I'm going to go to go record and say that before this month is over, there is going to be a lot more discussion regarding this year's flu reports. We have been hearing all flu season how the flu vaccinations given this year "hit the mark" and did "pretty well" at fighting it off. Tell that to my school. We had someone come in and vaccinate the whole school in November and today we had a less than 40% attendance rate. The culprit, the flu. And it's starting to trickle out into our community. This may be the worst season in a long time.

I just have to wonder if what went through my school was the swine flu. It occured just as all the migrant workers got to our state for the berry fields. Plus we had several students who vacationed in Mexico prior to that. Hmmm.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Be careful what you say

My little 4-year old space cadet student hurt her knee today. She cut it pretty badly and we were chatting as I fixed her up. She asked me why she was bleeding and I told her that she had some "broken skin." All of a sudden she started screaming in terror, "MY SKIN'S BROKEN!!! What am I going to do?" It was quite the woe is me moment. I should have learned my lesson, but obviously I didn't because in trying to calm her I told her that people get cuts all the time and that her skin wasn't really broken, just torn a bit. "MY SKIN'S TORN!!! It's never going to stop hurting! What am I going to do NOW???!!"

Silly me.


E announced today: Mommy, I saw sex today at school.

(Whiplash head turn) Me: You did? Where?

E: In the dictionary. It was a guide word.


Thursday, April 23, 2009

A New Low

My boss actually growled at me today.

The church-to-be (we're not even there yet) is trying to friend me on FB.

And our current choir director gave me an open bag of coffee as a birthday present.

That is all.

Tomorrow has to be a better day.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy Birthday Jenn!

There's not many people in life that I can claim as a lifelong friend. I moved around a lot as a child and don't play well with others. But Jenn and I have been friends for 29 LONG years. We survived a high school shooting, her insane mother, my drug-addicted brother and the weirdest road trip ever. (Never stop at a motel in Biloxi that advertises rooms for $29.00) She deserves to be acknowledged for sticking with me through the good times and the bad.

Jenn, Happy Birthday! You're still older than me!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Job Wanted

Every time I look for a new job, I am constantly amazed by the jobs that are available for the right person. But some of the jobs available in the area that we are moving to scare me. I came across an ad for a "Evening bar girl/Entertainer." This person must serve alcohol in a private room and do some light dancing. I have nothing against the male entertainment industry or the people who dance for a living. But I am inclined to think that the church would look down on ME filling such a position.

There was also the Training Analyst position where Experience with E-6B weapons system is helpful, but not required. I don't even know what an E-6B weapon is but it says the job is classified "secret". If it is so secret, why are they advertising on Craigslist?

Or what about the graffiti artist for a bailbondsman? Writer for gay erotica? Polynesian dancer? You know what I am not seeing? Teaching positions. Banking positions. Pharmacy positions. All the things that I am qualified to do. But then again, I am ready for a change and to try something new. Hmmm...maybe I should look into the gay erotica writer more. That would definitely give me an outlet for my pastor's wife angst. Can I start it with "It was a dark and stormy night...the two stranger's eyes locked...then their lips...then their..."?

Hee hee. Next!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

A good old-fashioned ghost story plus...

I have never been a sleeper. I am constantly battling insomnia and if I had my druthers, I would go to bed at 1:30 AM and wake up at 9:00. But alas, that doesn't work with my job or my family's schedule, so I just suffer and try to go to bed at 10:30. This is the way I have always been, even from birth.

My mom says that I was so bad when I was a small toddler that the pediatrician told my mom to just put me in my room at the same time every night and tell me I was not allowed to come out until the next morning, and to leave me be if I didn't go to sleep or woke up in the middle of the night and started playing. He told my mom that I would sleep when I got tired and I could always nap during the day.

So that's what my mom did, more to save her sanity then anything else. However, when I was just a wee lass, we lived in an old brick house that had three stories. My bedroom was on the second floor and we had a playroom in the attic. My mom had been putting me in my room everynight and leaving me be. I was a good-rule follower and stayed in my room just as I was told. My mom would hear me in my room playing every night about 2:00 AM, but didn't worry too much until one night she heard my toys moving and me talking to someone, having a completely one-sided conversation. She snuck in to check on me and my toys were moving, only I wasn't touching them. Someone was playing with me that she couldn't see!

Now remember, my mom grew up in a family that believed in the supernatural, so she checked to make sure I wasn't scared and then left me be. This happened many nights, until we moved as a matter of fact. The last week in this house, my mom was packing up our stuff into boxes and she kept hearing angry shuffling and thumping coming from our playroom. Only no one was up there. The noise became so bad that my brother was in tears from fright. My mom walked straight up to the third floor and told the ghost that she was sorry he was upset (my mom said I called it a he) but that his behavior was not okay and it was scaring my brother. The ghost stopped and we moved away. That was the last we ever heard from the ghost....maybe.

For you see, my daughter struggles with the same sleep issues I have. Only, she is very afraid to go to sleep and has to have a routine to comfort herself. In fact, she is almost always near tears every night before she goes to sleep because (duh duh duh) she is afraid a man is going to come into her room. I don't know where this fear comes from. We don't let her watch scary movies or even regular tv. We live in a safe neighborhood and she has never had an incident with any scary adult (although she was attacked on a playground once...hmm). Anywho, I just put it off to her anxiety. At least, I put it off until yesterday.

E has a metal plaque hanging from a chain on her door. It is from our friend who works for the sheriff and it basically says anyone who enters these premises illegally gets a free ride to jail. It has hung from her door for several weeks now, through storms, A/C blowing and the heater cycling through. It has never moved. But at about 5:00 AM yesterday I was woken up by a "tick, tick, tick" sound that my brain had never heard in our house before. It was as if someone was tapping on a door. Hubby got up to find E had locked her bedroom door after the sign had mysteriously started knocking against it. She thought the man was trying to get in!

And after putting all the dots together, I'm not sure he wasn't. It could be a coincidence. But then might not.

Believe it or not.

Friday, April 17, 2009

I Want to Make a Miracle Happen...HELP

Okay Internet, I'm putting it out here and looking for advice.

I have a friend who one year ago this week was suddenly struck 100% disabled by Ocular Myesthenia Gravis. In two weeks his business is closing down and he is going to have to file for bankruptcy. He also has diabetes, which due to his depression caused by everything, has become so severe as to need insulin. He has lost his lifelong faith and feels like, well, like life is out to get him.

He and I have been friends for about 12 years. We went to a concert in a hurricane and his daughter has babysat my daughter. He needs a miracle and I want to make it happen before I move away in June. It doesn't have to be a huge miracle, it doesn't have to involve lots of money, it just has to be enough to give him a moment to breathe normally and life his spirits for a day.

He is a fantastic photographer and has made monographs and sold some of his pictures at festivals and to individuals, but he says he doesn't know how to sell his pics to a larger audience. He is afraid to try because he just can't take failure one more time. I have never even contemplated selling pics for calendars or magazines, but I think he is that good. If there is someone out there who is a professional photographer, I need you to give me step by step advice. And I know, I could Google all of this and get advice, but that's not good enough. He won't do it that way. If I had a how-to from someone who is actually doing it, he might let me help him.

I'm putting myself in your hands, Cyberworld. I'm asking for help in making a miracle. I need to do this for him. I really need to make a difference this once. Help!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Smooshed Boobs and other Randomness

The title caught your eye, didn't it? I had a mammogram today. I know I am young but I have lumpy breasts, so my OB schedules one every two years just to keep a record. Aren't you glad I shared that? Anywho, I went in to have the mammogram and the radiologist I am a quiet person and sometimes I make others nervous. There's just something about my personality that makes people feel like they have to overcome for my stillness. I accept that, but NOT when my boobs are being flattened between two plastic plates. And the things this woman was saying....Here's just a few of her "thoughts":

She had "the"divorce and had to go back to school so she was accepted into the education program but realized that God only gave her 2 hands which means she shouldn't have anymore than two kids (Big breath) and so she found out she was accepted into the radiology program on the same day and decided it was a sign not to become a teacher (Gasp) and of course, there's her faith because she is really getting back into her faith but her brother won't even read fortunes cookies or horoscopes, (squish) she will, even though they were raised in the same faith she doesn't think fortune cookies can hurt but she and her daughter stopped for Chinese food one day when they were shopping and she asked her daughter what her fortune cookie said and it said (OMG IS IT OVER YET?) that she was going to go shopping so now she kind of believes in fortune cookies but not horoscopes because not every Scorpio in the world can't have money trouble on the same day and certainly not find true love all at the same time. (Switch boobs) But her brother is a teacher and he has all of his kids reading because they really love Harry Potter but now he has them reading the Twilight books although that might be a sin because some religions are against vampires and such (OUCH) oh sorry, the compression has to be just so, but my brother says it doesn't matter what kids read as long as they are reading, okay we're done here. Do you want to see the images? Come on, take a look.....Don't worry, your boobs aren't really that BIG they're just enlarged for the person who looks at them (PLEASE LET THIS STOP) although your husband might like it, eh?

I swear to you, that is the running commentary from the woman. My eyes were rolling back in my head. I just wanted to get it over with. I'm sure she talks like this because she gets a lot of nervous patients and she is trying to distract them, but for the love of Pete!

So anyway, that was my fun appointment. And how was your day?

One thing, Green, I wanted to let you know your friend's teacher is doing "creative spelling" which is a commonly accepted method of teaching kids to write. It is part of "Handwriting without Tears." There's a lot of debate about its effectiveness, but it is a widely used learning tool. The teacher sounds like he/she is not supporting it well, however. Just so you know.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Out of the Mouths of Babes

Over the years I have had quite a few interesting conversations with my preschoolers. I have had a little boy tell me that his daddy smoked cigarettes and his mommy kept asking him to stop but, he said, "Daddy never listens to Mommy and she gets so mad!!" Another one that I remember fondly was a little 3 year old girl I had whose mom was a bit of a control freak. This assertion was confirmed somehow when the little girl said, "My mommy likes to drink drinks with salt on them. She drinks them all gone...then she goes to find daddy."

But I think my all time favorite conversation has been found. I have a little 4 year old girl in my class who is both a space cadet and a firecracker. She wanders off if you are not watching her and makes a mess of all of the materials. She is really Calamity Jane reincarnated. But there is something about her that just appeals to me. I have to drag her screaming and kicking to the time out chair for hitting kids, but then she'll become the sweetest, cuddliest kid I have. You just never know what kind of mood she is going to be in.

Today all of the kids were out on the playground and she had to go into the classroom to use the bathroom. Most of our kids are allowed to reenter the classroom without an adult because they can be trusted to come back outside immediately. This girl cannot be trusted to return, so I had to escort her. While we were inside, she lollygagged and dawdled and my Lead Teacher rang the bell to line the outside kids up and bring them in. The kids have to walk around the building and enter through a hallway door so as not to drag dirt into our room. I have to be the last person to enter the building to confirm that all of the children have made it safely into the building. Only I wasn't outside, I was inside.

So this little girl was washing her hands, destroying the bar of soap and taking forever. I tried to get her to hurry and this is what happened:

Me: Michelle, please hurry up, we need to get outside.

Michelle: But why?

Me: All the kids are lining up.

Michelle: I know. But why do we have to go outside?

Me: Because we have to get in line to come in.

Michelle: But we're already IN.

At this point I didn't even know what to say. Here was my most "out there" child suddenly becoming a brainiac. Her logic just made too much sense. How do you argue with that?

On another note, I have closed my blog to anonymous commenters for the time-being. When I first started blogging, I told myself that if I was going to be so narcissistic as to put my thoughts out into the world, then I would take my lumps when people commented. Lately, however, an anonymous commenter seems to think it is okay to mock and insult me. I don't need that. I know I drive a lot of you crazy by turning the other cheek way too much. And I hear what you are all saying WHEN you say it to try to help, not hurt. But unless you have lived as a pastor's wife, you cannot understand why I always have to at least try to be "meek and mild." My husband is a very public figure in our town. And while his career is HIS career I can greatly influence where he is placed next. Lastly, I spent a lot of my life fighting battles that didn't need to be fought. When I need to rage back, I do. For example, E got punished today for forgetting to put her name on her paper (that subtle punishement). The gloves are off and I'm going in for blood. But not everything in my world has to be an "in your face" type of affair.

I do have boundaries and Anonymous crossed them.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Going Head to Head

My daughter has a crappy teacher this year. A while back I posted about E being called out in front of the classroom because she supposedly used the word "brake" incorrectly in a sentence because she said "The brake on the scooter fell off." Or something to that effect. That was just a minor incident in our year from hell. We've had a lot of lovely things happening.

For example, E skipped 1st grade. She did this after taking a battery of tests and meeting with guidance counselors, the whole nine yards. On her tests last year, she passed with flying colors and then some. In both math and reading, she tested off the charts. So you would think 2nd grade math would not be all that challenging to her this year. Imagine my surprise when I got her 2nd quarter math assessment test and found out she was failing math. She was failing math because she had been taken out of the classroom during math to go to the gifted program for writing. Of course, the teacher never told me this, even though there were numerous emails and calls made to the school. I had to find out from E that she hadn't had a math lesson in several weeks. How is she supposed to learn how to do the math if she is not there for the lesson?

But it got better. There were several emails from her teacher that I couldn't even comprehend. There were sentence fragments, run-ons and lots of misspellings. I have several emails that never answered my one-sentence questions. It was like getting an email from a 5th grader. Because I can not be calm when it comes to all things E, I stepped aside and let Hubby go to the counselor to seek help dealing with the teacher. Even the counselor had no idea what the teacher was trying to say. We tried working with the teacher, but everytime we "complained" about something, E's seat assignment would be moved. She went from being with a group of kids, to sitting next to an EC kid with severe problems, to sitting totally alone in the classroom. She was never moved because of any sort of discipline problem, it just seemed like subtle punishment.

Collectively (and because of this) Hubby and I decided to keep our mouths shut unless something REALLY bad came up. We seemed to be doing okay. I started working with E on her math. There were some minor things, but we let them go and E was moved back into the seating arrangement of the classroom. But today as E was doing her homework, she insisted that her teacher had taught her to round up in measurements. If it was 1/2 inch, she was to call it 1 inch. You can imagine the problem with this. She labeled something on her homework as 4 inches when in reality it was 2. I ground my teeth and tried to think of how to handle this, but E got really upset with me. She thinks I am making her turn in her homework incorrectly and is afraid her teacher is going to yell at her. So, I decided I needed to step in. I emailed the teacher. I was very nice and gentle and used words like "E misunderstood what you said....could you please go over the concept with her again?" I tried very hard not to lay blame...but if E comes home tomorrow and tells me she's had her desk moved out into the hallway, you better believe you're going to be reading a news story on Yahoo about "Pastor's wife in a throw-down with Teacher!" I'm more worried that the teacher is going to tell me that she IS telling them to round up in measurement. Estimation, yes. True measurement, NO!

So anyway, here we go again. The thing that I hate about this is that I feel like I am throwing my teaching experience around. And maybe I am, but all of this really comes from a mama bear perspective. I think there needs to be some accountability. So, E's Mama Accountable.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

At Your Convenience

There's an odd occurence happening in my neighborhood right now. We had new neighbors move in last week. They are a very nice family from Senegal with three children. Their oldest son (5) has never had a neighborhood full of children to play with, so he is a little unsocialized, but he is learning. But the odd occurence involves listening to my One-Upper Neighbor bask in having fresh blood to innundate with her philosophies. She is pregnant with her third child and coming up with wild new tales.

I have known this woman for 3 years. She has to always feel like she has what you have but more. If we tell her we are going away for a weekend vacation, she has to plan a week-long extravaganza. My parents are renting a house on the beach, so now she and her husband are looking to buy a vacation home on the beach. That sort of thing. Now she is 5 months along in her pregnancy and telling us she had cervical cancer when she was younger and it causes her to have preterm labor now. She is supposedly on bedrest, but she was baking cookies and went to the beach today. Maybe she is telling the truth, but seriously, if I were put on bedrest, I wouldn't be baking cookies and I wouldn't be getting sand in my nether regions either!

She has swooped in on our new mom and just filled her with all of her theories. O.U. Neighbor believes her children are to bend to her schedule and will at all times. Those aren't my words, those are hers. She also believes it is her job to tell people what weight their children should be, so she is always telling this new mom about her "healthy diet" that will help her children lose weight. The new kids have, what I would say, is a very cultural build. The children are not heavy, but they are not built like my WASP daughter or O.U. Neighbor's ultra-skinny children. They are just normal, healthy kids.

So we're all sitting aroung outside yesterday while our kids were playing and OUN was telling New Mom about breast feeding her kids "at her convenience." And how she is still drinking espresso every morning and it doesn't matter what the doctors say. Then she went on to tell New Mom how she had her kids get antibiotic shots when they had strep throat instead of the 7 day medicine because the shots were easier. She took pride in the fact that the pediatrician told her no other mom had ever chosen to get the shot. But she said it was "just more convenient!" I just kind of looked at her, shaking my head. I know her, this doesn't phase me. She knows me, she knows how I feel about her comments like this. But the New mom, trying to defend her new friend, turned to me and said, "Sometimes I wish I did what you did and took the easy way out and just had one." Um URTTTTT! I took the easy way out?

Now, this woman doesn't know me yet. She doesn't know I had two miscarriages prior to having E... Or that I was sick every single day of my pregnancy...Or that at 17 weeks I developed extreme dehydration and almost lost E... Or that E was born with an irregular heart beat, that although it has resolved, caused me months of no sleep as I woke up every few minutes to make sure she was still alive and not fallen to SIDS. I took E with me to work 5 weeks after she was born and TAUGHT with her in a sling 4 out of 5 days. I breast fed her while I graded papers. She is so well-mannered and polite because I didn't take the easy way out parenting and enforced firm rules and set schedules. Nothing about my maternal experience is "at my convenience" or the "easy-way out." I wasn't sure how to respond to this woman's flippant comment. I am sure she didn't mean to hurt my feelings or make me feel as if I were less of a mother, but she did.

So I am holding my tongue right now. I think when we are alone and not in the grips of OUN, I will tell her my history. I will set her straight and be the other side of OUN. I honestly think OUN poisoned the well with her ideas and made the other mom feel bad about herself. Her kids are not as well-mannered, or skinny, and she is dealing with a breastfeeding 3 month old baby who has just been uprooted and is nursing on demand all the time. She's feeling tired and worn out and made a comment out of turn. She tried to be more like OUN and she took a shot at me because OUN's pull is just that strong. And I believe moms need to support each other and lift each other up, not degrade each other. So I will wait. And I will listen to her and tell her it is okay to feel the way she is feeling about being a mom of three right now, that it is hard, but she has moved into a neighborhood that treats their kid with a village mentality and we will help. But I will let her know- nothing about motherhood is at our convenience. That is a sheer fallacy I will not perpetuate.

Baby Zane update: my friend's baby has been taken off a ventilator and is able to nurse and feed now. He is still in NICU but getting stronger every day and the family is now feeling hopeful. Thanks for all your thoughts!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

As God is My Witness...

Do you remember that great 70's sitcom (or was it 80's) WKRP in Cinncinnati? I watch that show occasionally and still laugh at the jokes and innuendos. It was just a great ensemble cast show. But the best episode had to be the Great Thanksgiving episode where the radio station gave away turkeys for Thanksgiving, only they dropped them out of a plane. Hubby and I turn to each other every now and then and yell, "As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could FLY!"

Well, a Yay God church has gotten it into their collective heads to have an Easter egg drop from a helicopter. I just see all sorts of liability issues with this premise. Eggs falling from a high altitude and small children escaping their parents grasp...hmm...sounds like a bad idea to me. I think someone from that church needs to watch WKRP.

Anywho, yes, I went to visit our new church and parsonage this past week. The trip up was treacherous. I am a tornado magnet. REALLY!! If there is a tornado or even going to be a tornado, it will find me. There were 6 tornadoes in my state on Monday, I was in the vicinity of 3 of them. And when I say vicinity, I mean within a mile of them. Something even pushed my car while Hubby was driving and now he is a believer that tornadoes seek me out. I have outrun a tornado while driving on an Interstate, had a tornado surround my house while I was in it and knock 2 giant trees down and I have had an F2 tornado go down my street while I huddled in the basement. Seriously, you don't want to be near me in a storm.

We finally got to our new locale and it was a little offputting. The church was an exact opposite of everything our church is now. The laity are very active. The pastor is retiring and has not been pulling his weight for several years, so they are excited to have fresh blood come in and lead. The sanctuary is haphazard and ugly, but I think that is the pastor's fault. When we walked through the parsonage there was so much junk in it, I couldn't focus on the house. The house is big enough, but it is 50 years old and has odd rooms that appear out of nowhere and 2 kitchens. That's all fine, but you should have seen this place. It was as if the family had that hoarding disease. In some places I could barely find a path to walk through. The man had 25 pairs of shoes. What does a man need with 25 pairs of shoes? I just hope they take all their junk with them when they move, so I won't have to clean it all out! I think this hoarding made its way into the church building.

But all in all, I think it will be a good move and a good fit for Hubby. I still haven't decided what I want to be when I grow up, but I'm keeping my eyes open and hoping for a sign. Maybe a guitar will suddenly appear on my doorstep and that will be my signal to go back to singing? Who knows, a tornado may just blow it up to my house. Really....

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

I Never Do This

I'm in a faraway place visiting our soon to be new church when I received a prayer request from a very old friend. She and I have known each other since college. We drove home topless from Sandusky, Oh to Columbus, Ohio once just because we could.

Well, she gave birth to a baby boy yesterday. I don't know any details but she said something went wrong and he's very sick and in NICU. The news at first was very bad but is slowly getting better. Please hold this family in the light, say a prayer, light a candle, do a chant, send your thoughts, whatever your religion or non-religion deems appropriate. She's important to me and believes in the power of prayer.

So, my cyber friends, would you help me out and ask for a little help?

Saturday, April 4, 2009

So THAT'S What They Meant

Bay City Rollers "Elevator" Song for LIMW at 12:

Ride my elevator
Don't say no my escalator
Ride my elevator--ride
Come with me my oscillator
Ride my elevator--ride
"Hey Mommy, they're talking about going to the mall."
Bay City Rollers "Elevator" Song for LIMW at 38 with child:
Ride my elevator
Don't say no my escalator
Ride my elevator--ride
Come with me my oscillator
Ride my elevator--ride
"HUBBY! You can't let E listen to that! I never knew THAT'S what they were talking about!"
I was SO naive.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

So Angry I'm Numb

Several years ago I had a three year-old boy in my class who just seemed "different." He was odd and smaller then the rest but the lead teacher told me 3 year olds can have a wide developmental span and I should not jump to conclusions. I pushed and said I thought the mom needed to know her child was not like the other children. I was told firmly to stay out of it.

This child is now 7 and in my current school. His mom is an assistant just like me for the other preschool classroom. When I saw her son again, I mentioned to my lead teacher (who had continued on as his preschool teacher when the former school I worked at closed) that I thought the boy needed to be tested. He just seemed odd to me. But I could never say what was wrong. He was developing in a forward pattern. He was learning skills and lessons. He had friends. Again, I was told to keep my my nose out of it.

Today I had to hold his mom in my arms as she cried inconsolably. Her doctor is sending her son upstate to a genetic specialist because he is fairly certain he has a rare, untreatable disease. A disease that leads to a slow, painful death. It would not have made a difference if this had been discovered at age 3 or now in a course of treatment. It would have made a difference in the mom's guilt at how she has felt at dealing with such a difficult child. It would have made a difference to have a teacher back her up when she tried to tell her pediatrician that she felt like something was wrong. It would have made a difference to her.

This is why I am seriously thinking of either leaving the teaching field all together or just working with troubled kids. I am tired of being told to keep my mouth shut. I don't think all kids have issues. I am just really observant and get to know a child very well. I listen and observe. Just because I don't have a teacher's certificate doesn't mean I'm not qualified to tell you if your child needs some support.

But I have been beaten down...and this...this leaves me numb. And more than a lot sad.