Saturday, February 8, 2014

The very bumpy road to quiet...

~"Trouble..oh, trouble, trouble, trouble, trouble..Feels like every time I get back on my feet, she comes around and knock me down again.."~ Ray Lamontagne

 I think that this, in many ways has been our hardest year yet. Holy crap-it has just been one thing after another-and I am starting to feel a little bit
    pessimistic...loopy..out of my head...strained if you will.. It feels like we have been living under a ginormous cloud of doom and damnation. Really, there is no other apt description.  Times like this...well, honestly, there haven't been any other times like this...But, in difficult situations, I try and evaluate things..try and figure out what exactly the universe is screaming telling us.What can we change?  What can we do differently-or better? What can I find that is positive..I look hard for the positive..I do..really!

  Back in June, when Omar lost his job..we thought.."HOLY CRAP! OH NO! WTF ARE WE GOING TO DO?!  Gosh! Lets look at this as an opportunity!" We had known for a while that he had wanted to do something else..that change might be a good thing.  We had thought about it a lot.  But- thinking isn't doing.  His job had paid very well..and we were comfortable with that.  We reasoned that his job loss was the universe giving us the kick forward that we needed-making us change things. I mean really, there is nothing quite like losing your job, your benefits, and your stock options to make one reassess their situation!  ...So, change we did-or so we imagined...Omar, after careful deliberation, took a job offer. It was a step away from what he had been doing. It was the same line of work-only different..and we had thought-better. In some ways it has been. In others?  Lets just say it has been crazy nonsensical an *cough* adventure..oh what a time we have had! AND  here we are..*gulp* once again thinking "Something HAS to freaking change!

  I'm starting to think that maybe it's me.  Maybe I'm the one the universe is yelling at.  Maybe I'm the one who should be looking to change how I have been doing things..The problem is-what do I do?

  My dad, in loving moments-used to look at me and say "Kid? You have no skills." He was right!  I don't! Really and truly-I have absolutely no marketable skills. I have a degree in theater for goodness sake! While I do consider myself to have been quite good (it's been a few years since I've performed) I don't see a profitable future in monologues...or in dressing up as giant costumed characters-at least not in Maine. Some people have suggested that I write a book. Which is a lovely ego boost (I must admit)....and, I have had a few stories published-for actual money..But honestly? What in the world would I write an entire book about?  Autism? Ick-don't we already have enough of those? "A mother struggles (with great depth and emotion-none of which I have) to understand..a child-who, against all odds- succeeds..they walk off (lots of tears streaming down the mothers face) into the sunset" Blechhh... As for my life...sadly, it just isn't that interesting.  Don't get me wrong!  My life is quite wonderful..but-To write a book-you need to be have struggles and a dark history or a sordid past..disease helps.  Me?  I've got nothing...I can just imagine the title "Mediocre-a mothers quest to vacuum the living room"..or "Laundry-a mothers journey towards folding and putting away." You couldn't even make a Lifetime movie out of it...which is what happens to all books of that variety..Can you understand my predicament?  I'm just not all that interesting!

 So... I've been looking at other options. I don't want to go back to school..I'm going to be fifty this year, and am pretty much as "higher educated" as I am going to be. Besides, I just don't have the attention span to sit through classes..Although...I have received a couple of (unsolicited) offers for job training that have spurred my interest.  I must admit that I am kind of intrigued by the  "Train at home to be a funeral director" catalog.  Yes, there is a  part of me that wants to look into that.  How does one train at home? The pamphlet says that they supply textbooks(Somber 101?) and..learning aids...Learning aids? What could they possibly be? Can you mail a cadaver...or do you have to supply your own? More importantly, after finishing the course-can you work from home?

  We are finally finally finally at the beginning of the end of a very long, very cold, very stressful winter. I would really like it if things would calm down for a bit. Give us a moment to catch our breath..check in on my kids (who, really need so much more of my attention than I have been giving them)..maybe hang out with my chickens...drink some coffee...stare out the window. I would really enjoy a few weeks of unfettered life...A little peace, a lot of calm...and a whole bunch of quiet. Oh..peace and quiet..what a joy that would be! But how do I get that?....Hmmmm.... Maybe funeral directing wouldn't be such a bad choice after all..I might even be able to write a book about it."Kathleen Leopold-Funeral Director".or-"A woman and her corpse".."A mothers adventure in embalming?"..The possibilities are endless.....

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Birds, Bee's and Labels....and the police

                   ~"Until the day is night and night becomes the day---ALWAYS  
                       Until the trees and seas just up and fly away---ALWAYS 
                       Until the day that 8x8x8 is 4---ALWAYS 
                       Until the day that is the day that are no more 
                       Did you know that you're loved by somebody? 
                       Until the day the earth starts turning right to left---ALWAYS 
                       Until the earth just for the sun denies itself 
                       I'll be loving you forever"~ Stevie Wonder-AS

 I've never met someone as comfortable in their own skin as Oscar..someone who I sometimes think was born skinless.  Every sight, every sound, smell...touch...He felt it all and all at once. His early years weren't easy-it wasn't easy being him. Not at all.  Yet despite all of these struggles- here he is at thirteen-confident, loving-JOYFUL. He's really one of the best people that I know.

  Right now, he's a bit anxious about growing up. The realization that he is one day going to be an adult is worrying him.  Me too.  But..for different reasons. He likes life the way that it is. Who wouldn't? He's fed, clothed..he has an unlimited supply of YouTube videos to watch.  The idea of any of that changing bothers him. I on the other hand-worry about how the world is going to treat him. He's a great person-but, will people take the time to recognize that? Or..will they just see his stimming..judge him by his interesting language..label him? The thought of that really bothers me. But then-I look at who he is...and I realize...Oscar doesn't give a crap.  He really doesn't. He is who he is-no apologies.  He is comfortable in being himself-and he isn't going to spend time worrying about what other people think. He knows he's a good person..and really, isn't that all that counts?  He will make his own label. I need to trust that.

  So, now have two teenagers...and two girls who sometimes think that they are thirty five. It certainly makes for some interesting times at Chez Herd.  Interesting indeed! For the most part, it is kind of fun.  I am definitely not one of those parents that mourns babyhood. No, I think that I would prefer children to be born potty trained and with the inherent knowledge of where they had left their shoes. To me-puberty, growing up..they are all signs that one day I will be able to use the bathroom uninterrupted. Sure we have had some bumps along the boys are spreading their wings..and sometimes they eat and mumble more than they talk(usually at the same time) But, that's just part of the age. We'll ride it through....Or at least try..I have to admit, their have been a couple of things that have left me...wondering.

  Today, one of my kids came home VERY UPSET. "I had a HORRIBLE day at school!".."Why?  What happened?" "I..*gulp* FAILED PUBERTY!"  "WHAT?!"  "*sob* I failed the puberty test!"  "What do you mean-you failed the puberty test-what kind of test??"  "It means I got the questions wrong!" .."And?".."It means I failed puberty!" " *sputter* What do you mean -you failed puberty? " "I don't know I just failed!".."So...what?-you're not allowed to grow breasts now?  Quick!  Alert the puberty police! There will be no changes happening until you pass your test! ?..Really?." "*laughs*..No..I guess not..I just hate that stupid class..I KNOW what's going to happen..I thought I had answered the questions right.".."O.K...well...we have books-right?" "Right".."And we've talked about all the body stuff-right?"  "Right.".."And you know that I will always talk to you about ANY questions that you have...right?" "Right.".."And you know that your body is changing-like it or not-and that nothing is going to stop that...right?".."Right.".."So don't worry about it...because, no matter what-you CAN NOT fail puberty!"

  I understand the intention behind a class in puberty-I do. There are some families that don't discuss these things..either they aren't comfortable (like I am?) or they just don't bother. Kids need to know this stuff.  But, they are kids (10-11 year olds). Some of them (like mine) just aren't comfortable discussing these things at school. It isn't like I haven't taught them. I have had to.  During the baby years-my house was more a nudist colony (kids not me!) than anything else.  None of them really cared for clothes. Since I have both boys and girls-they noticed the differences early on.."Hey Mama! He's got an elephant trunk!"  Plus, I had my own interesting (read last post) upbringing..So I have made sure that they have known everything they should know..geared of course to their ages..There will be no puberty failure!

  Many years ago..back when the boys were babies (and the girls were just a twinkle) we lived in a house tucked in to the woods. I remember one very hot summer day, I had come home from the market overheated and sweaty...So,.after getting out of the car, I walked to our pool, took off my clothes and jumped in. It felt wonderful! As I was getting out of the pool..Omar teasingly said-"I hope our neighbors didn't see you-they might call the police!" I laughed it off and went in the house to get dressed...about ten minutes later, there was a knock on the door...It WAS the police! I FREAKED out! "How could anyone have seen me! We live in the middle of the woods!"..Omar opened the door and the officer said.."I'm just here making sure that your dogs are licensed.."..PSHEW! Talk about coincidence! Or close calls...Imagine if he had arrived ten minutes earlier?!  He might have been offended! He might have gotten an eyeful....or not...*sigh* He may have been forced to call the *sigh*...puberty police..

  Anyway-back to the beginning..Oscar is thirteen! We could not be prouder of the person that he is-of the adult that he is becoming. I now have two teenagers -AND two thirty five year old little's an adventure for sure, but we are enjoying the ride...while anxiously awaiting the day that I can take a shower without someone knocking on the door.

 If you get a chance-give a listen to this song. I think it is so very beautiful-and totally expresses what we feel for our herd...enjoy..