Monday, July 27, 2009

Adding Water to the Soup

Ok let me preface this by saying a few things that some of you may not know about me. When I was 19, I moved away from home... far far away. I was the only one of the four children to do this and I was very purposeful about it. I wanted out. So when I started this blog in the not so long ago past, I briefly considered choosing to make it private because I didn't really want anyone from my family to see it. In the end, I decided if I wanted anyone to read it (and I do with the exception of a few people), I needed to leave it out there on the open market. Within only a few weeks, my father stumbled upon it. I was upset at first, but the truth is, although he and I have our differences, out of the bunch of us, he probably is the one that "gets" me best. So I casually mentioned to him that I'd rather he not mention anything to my mom and now this blog thing is our little secret. It's not that I don't like my mother--in fact, she's become one of my best friends over the years. It's just that she has this view of who I am and what I'm about and I'm okay with all of that. I don't have this need to have people understand me. It really doesn't matter to me. But if they don't, they obviously might get hurt by something I say and I obviously don't want that.

So all that to say, my in-laws obvoiusly don't have any knowledge of this blog either. I mean, if I need to talk about people who don't "get" me, I could devote an entire blog to that alone and the people who produced seinfeld would probably purchase it for their next series that I'm sure would have enough topicless information in it to run a whole new 7 year hit. Yeah.

In January, Dennis's friend from college asked if he could live with us. We charged him a minimal amount rent, and were honestly appreciative of a little extra income our way. But so began the adding water to the soup as I like to call it. Except we never eat soup, so if there's a more suitable term, let me know. It was really no big deal. We usually have one plate of leftovers every night anyway and about 80% of the time, it gets stuck in the fridge to grow mold until I decide to do my monthly clean out anyway. That plate became Pete's... without the mold. It's been a better-than-expected situation, honestly. People ask me all the time "You have a roommate? How does that work?" Pete's very respectful of our space and time and he's great with Anakin so it was a smooth transition.

Well this week, Dennis's 19 year old sister moved down to Georgia. She's not staying with us as we are obviously fresh out of room anyway. All the same, when she talked about moving here, I told her it would be best if she found another place to stay. I felt, being her older sister (more or less) for the last ten years, that this would be a good growing up experience for her. She's the baby and extremely spoiled and she needs to learn what it's like to be on your own--to have to work for things you want, and sometimes, to work hard for those things and still not get them. These are invaluable lessons I wouldn't trade for any time in my life, hard or good, and she needs those. However, until she gets her feet on the ground, obviously she will be over here a lot. In fact, after she gets her feet on the ground, I suspect she will still be here a lot. And that's okay with me. I'm glad she is part of our lives and honestly, it's nice to have some family near by. We have some aunts and uncles on Dennis's side that never talk to us, but hopefully Danielle will help us bridge that gap too.

Anyway, so adding water to the soup continues. I made quesadillas for dinner tonight and poor Anakin didn't get any meat in his. All the same, I don't think he cared--he picks his out most of the time anyway. I just hope that this water doesn't kill us. It means I'm going to have to learn how to make a lot more recipes where the chicken breasts are cut up and not served outright. Because I don't really have the means to add two more pounds of meat to our grocery list per week. But I will figure it out. I always do. I'm super mom/wife/sister. *insert thumbs-up with cheesey smile

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

OMG she's posting three days in a row!!

Don't consider this routine, I just happen to get all my homework done this morning and now I am left with all this time and nothing to fill it. Well... "nothing" is probably inappropriate. I could be doing lots of other, more productive things like... laundry. Or mopping that kitchen floor I mentioned yesterday. But internet time is good reward for time well spent doing homework and I've certainly earned myself that as I studied for over 6 hours yesterday and got a 92 on the subsequent quiz. (applause isn't necessary, but thank you)

Today, Dennis took some time off and we went to see the new Harry Potter movie. I totally had tears in my eyes as it began and I initiated the applause when the credits rolled. It was beautiful. It was edited a little more than I liked but the story was still there and it was awesome. I think if you haven't read the books, you may have a hard time but you'll get through. However, if you haven't seen the other movies, you may be wasting your time. Don't get me wrong, the cinematography is reason enough to see it, but you don't stand a chance understanding what the heck is going on. It'd be like watching the last Matrix... you'd be like "Why does that other guy keep calling Neo Mr. Anderson?" "Who the heck is the Oracle?" "How come he can fly?" Yeah, just like that. I mean, you need to know who the characters are because there are a ton of things that happen with no explanation and it's kind of just like either you get it or you don't. I will see it a second time when Danielle is here next week so I am looking forward to maybe getting more out of it. We'll see. I'm debating trying to work the book in before then. I'm not sure it's going to happen.

I just want to let everyone know, that Anakin was so much better today, too. He did really well while I worked on my last anatomy assignment and we had no major meltdowns today which was especially significant considering he had no nap. On the way home from church, he asked Dennis to ride in the back with him and Daddy was so sweet! He rode in the back and played dinosaurs all the way home from church even with a stop at Target where the boys stayed in the car. It was so precious to watch my boys together. They love each other so much! Anakin literally pines for 6:00 every day, asking me often "where's daddy?" "When will he be home to play with me?" I also worked really hard to be super patient with him today and it made a huge difference. I held him a lot, let him sit on my lap and talked with him often even while I was doing my school work. I made sure he was respectful of my space so I could finish my work, but we still sang our ABCs, talked about the birds in the backyard, and even played bubbles out on the porch. Well he was out, while I was in. But still, it was more than we normally do. And I saw a significant change in his behavior. I know that this means I just need to continue to juggle all my responsibilities, but just because it's hard, doesn't mean I'm giving up. I'll continue to work at trying to give my school work as much attention as I can, but motherhood has to be my priority and I will continue to make that happen.

Okay, off to bed for me!

Monday, July 13, 2009

what are you impressed with?

I posted this on my mommies' forum so it's a little detached in the sense that you guys already know some of this but I wanted to get my words out and once they are out, they are out so I just copied it:

For those of you that don't know me as well (and that's a lot of you I'm sure), I just started going to school. Originally, I figured I'd go and take one or two classes at a time and get my MA certificate as time allowed, not really with any kind of end goal in mind. But when I went for my orientation last month, I found out I was actually going to have to take a significant amount of classes as the program does not allow "part time" students. So here I am, a full time mom, a full time wife, and a full time student (not to mention a part time worker when the occasional job finds its way) and even though three weeks into classes I am having a little trouble balancing it all, I'm pretty impressed with myself. And I don't even mind saying so. I'm toughing it out on all fronts and though I've faltered a little (probably on all fronts there, too) I can honestly say I'm doing better than I expected myself to do. And that means a lot. I'm sure it means a lot to my husband. Eventually it will mean a lot to my son, when he's old enough to appreciate what I went through to give him a better life. But it means a lot to me. Because when we become moms, we have to give up so much of who we are. We give up our interests to elmo, lightning mcqueen, and dora. We give up our identity--I can honestly say at this point in my life, more people I know, know my son's name than know mine. We give up our hobbies as finger painting, play doh and potty training replace sewing, scrapbooking and reading. And we often don't even look back other than the occasional "before I had kids, I used to..." We replace our identities as women with our identities as moms. And we're more than happy to accept such a rewarding change.

Even though, in the end, I went back to school for my family--to earn a better life and to be able to give my son the education I'd like him to receive--I really went back for me. And it feels so good to know that I did something that I really wanted to do, that nobody else told me I should do or had to do or needed to do--but I wanted this for myself. And now I'm doing it, and I'm doing it well. And even though I miss my naps, and the laundry isn't all the way caught up, and the kitchen floor could have used a mopping a good 5 days ago, I'm balancing it all pretty well. I'm beyond proud of my current 4.0 and I can't even describe to you how impressed I am that I even went through with it. That I knew it would be tough, and I knew it would take the life out of me, and I knew it meant giving up a few precious moments of freedom in my day, and I did it anyway. Because I could. Because I wanted to.

So all that to say, what have you done lately for YOU, that you've impressed yourself?? What did you do that you thought you couldn't or thought you couldn't handle, and you stuck your neck out there, and you achieved it anyway? What have you done to feel like super mom/wife/you today?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

School and all things associated.

Stella asked for a school update and to be honest, I'd been thinking I should post something but just hadn't really had the words to put out there yet. So ready or not...

From a GPA standpoint, school is going well. So far, I've gotten A's on all of my quizzes and I'm a little ahead of schedule on my typing class. However, although the classes are online and therefor, not proctored, I had hoped to do all my quizzes without relying on my notes and book. None such luck as evolved. I am studying, taking notes, making flashcards, and going over as much as I can before the tests. But I just don't have the time to study as much as I'd like. So I've had to rely on my notes a little more than I wanted but I think I'm doing a pretty good job considering. The considering part would refer to the 3 year old that sucks up every last minute of my time and unit of my energy. Whomever dubbed the ever popular phrase "terrible twos" apparently missed the third year of their child's life.

Anakin and I are getting by on a day-to-day basis but this last Friday was especially rough filled with yelling, kicking, screaming and tantrums. Anakin did some of all that, too. I spent the weekend with my thoughts and resolved that I would show more patience in the coming days (years) and remember that he is the three year old, and I am the grown up. And I understand why I am upset, and he does not. Even when the reason he is upset is that he is so tired, he can't keep his eyes open and yet still insists he's not taking a nap. Yeah. Good times.

And I've been working to try to retain the information in my books a little harder. I spent all of yesterday and today getting caught up on my Medical Terminology class and I did almost all of the tests without looking at my books, only using my notes when checking my answers. However, the chapter 4 quiz had a LOT of wrong answers, so I'll be reviewing that information again this week. Tomorrow I'll be hunkering down to work on the next three chapters of my anatomy class. The quizzes are due next week so it's pretty important that I get crackin. This class is by far the most difficult class I've ever taken and I gave a preface that I thought it would be. It's an insane amount of information per chapter, not to mention science isn't my strong suit anyway. But I'll get there. I'm determined to push myself further than what I think I can handle. And I'm intent on getting a 4.0 this time. And by "this time" I mean, I'm not going back to school to half-ass it. I'm going back to gain in my life a purpose and meaning in my career. I'm tired of just having a job. That means that I'm going back for bigger reasons than just because it's the thing to do after high school, you know? I'm goign back for me. And that's a big deal. I want to prove to myself that I can do this. And that I can finish. And that I can kick a little butt while I'm doing it.

So there's the update. Maybe I could try to make these a weekly thing instead of a monthly thing? At least then you'd know Anakin and I had made it through seven more days.