Monday, August 30, 2010

Whose Taking Care of Me?

Ever feel like, although you are the ramrod that holds your family together, you are also the least important person in it? I mean, take Mom out of the equation, and the whole family would fall apart. Or at least flounder. And yet, mom's needs are very last. Dead last. I think I am just a little too selfish to accept this difficult fact. Am I the only one who struggles with this? Am I just more selfish than most moms out there? I take care of the man and the baby--but who takes care of ME? Oh wait--I do. When I get the chance. Which I rarely do.

I spent the summer being a Stay At Home Mom. I wrote a post about how work was easier. Well, this what I have to say about that...WHAT THE HELL WAS I THINKING????

I have never struggled with working as much as I am right now. I've never wanted to be home more. I've always said I like my job, I like working, and I am ok with not being a SAHM. But now--now I'm not so sure. I just can't keep up! How did I do it last semester? I'm tired. No--I'm exhausted. I am teaching seven periods a day with no break. I did this last semester--how did I not, like, DIE? Every second is insane--I'm getting new students sent down every period, and they interupt what I'm doing and I'm multi-tasking and trying to settle them and keep the other kids busy. And then I'm teaching the same thing over and over again--why is this suddenly so difficult? I've been doing it for six years! And then school gets out and I'm rushing to pick up the baby and get dinner on for Trevor and keep the house clean.

He comes home, eats dinner. And he goes to bed.

I do the dishes, sweep the floor, make dinner and serve it, do more dishes, feed the baby, put her to bed, go back up there twenty times to soothe her before she actually goes to sleep. I try to get scrapbooking and blogging done--when I'm lucky enough to have the time--and get lunches ready for the next day and clean up messes and do the laundry and pick up EVERY SINGLE THING he's ever worn which is on the floor since he can't figure out how to use a hamper. I'm tired. Is it ok that I'm tired?

And I'm really not being fair. Trevor will be ticked when he reads this. He's really great with Afton. He puts her down to bed almost as often as I do. He works long 10 hour days and he's tired too. But seriously--how hard is it to use a hamper???

Today was just the hardest day. Work was long and stressful. Trevor is really, really sick. He's throwing up constantly and he's really dizzy. We aren't sure why. Am I a jerk because I'm not thinking, "Oh my poor darling! I'm so sad you're sick! What can I do to serve you?" but instead I'm thinking, "Damn! Now I have to do EVERYTHING!" He can't drive, so I spent the whole evening driving Afton to my sisters, then picking him up then going to Instacare, then going to Walgreens to get his perscription, then getting Afton, then picking up the perscription (and Walgreens took FOREVER so I'm not going there again!) And we get home--and still I'm running a mile a minute feeding the baby, getting her down, running to the store for milk. He sits and watches TV. Like he's been sitting and resting all day.

But he's sick! He really is! He really CAN'T do what I'm doing--I know this. I know he's not faking it. I've seen the blood run from his face when he stands up, and how heavily he leans on me when we walk, and how he had to run to the bathroom when we got to the Instacare to throw up yet again. Why am I not more sympathetic? Why am I not more Christ-like? Why can't I feel more empathy for him and take care of him the way I'm supposed to? Why am I complaining, when he has a geniune and real need?

Maybe because I also have genuine and real needs--but they are NEVER as important as anyone else's.

Ok. I'm done. Please don't think I'm a horrible person. I love my husband with all my heart. I'm completely nuts about him. Everyone knows that. (Gosh I hope he doesn't read this...uh..I LOVE YOU HONEY!!!) I love my baby girl. I am honored to have them both in my life and to be able to serve them. But...today I just want a break! Is that ok??

Friday, August 27, 2010

I'm THAT GIRL.

I got in a fender bender yesterday. My fault. And guess what? I was talking on my cell phone. Yup. I'm that girl. I was stopped at the corner ready to turn right, and talking to Trevor. I was only a minute from my mother-in-law's house. I glanced to check the light, and when I turned back, I was bumping the car in front of me.

I was horrified. I haven't had an accident since 2003. My record is almost pristine. Trevor's IS pristine. And I got in an accident. And I WAS ON MY CELL PHONE! The woman I hit drove a convertible--it was a 2001 and not new, but it was still a beautiful car. She got out of the car and started yelling at me for being on my cell phone. Having ended my call abruptly, I immediately and humbly apologized. What else could I do? I can't deny I was on my phone. TOTALLY took the wind out of her sails. I think she would have much preferred it if I'd yelled right back. We pulled over. There were no injuries--Afton was in the back and didn't seem to really notice it had happened at all. My mother-in-law came and got her soon after so she didn't have to wait in the hot sun. My car is totally fine. There's has a two small dents in the bumper. Not sure how this is going to pan out with my insurance.

Anyway--I wondered to myself, after the lady yelled at me, if SHE had ever talked on her cell phone while driving. I mean, don't most people do that? And as annoying as it is when you see a reckless driver on their phone, it's NOT illegal (yet). Thank goodness I wasn't texting! But then, how many times have I thrown up my hands in fury when I get cut off by someone with a cell phone attached to their face? Don't we all know its dangerous? And we do it anyway! In fact, I SAVE certain phonecalls for when I'm driving, so I have "something to do." How ridiculous is that?

So I've been very aware since the accident. I said to myself, "no more talking on the cell phone while driving." And to my surprise--it's something akin to giving up drugs or alcohol. It's REALLY HARD!!! It's like some kind of addiction! Suddenly driving is so BORING! Remember those days when we didn't have cell phones or computers? And somehow, we got through the day without dying. Now it's like I've had my arm cut off. It's so pathetic. We are so addicted to our technology!

Anyway, that's my story. I hope this doesn't kill my premiums. I hope that ticket doesn't cost me a fortune. Thank goodness the police officer only sited me for following too closely, and not for distracted driving! And I sure hope those people don't suddenly claim an injury. They seemed like the type that would get the most they can out of this situation. But then--I DID hit them. And THEY are the ones that will have to go through the hassle of getting their car repaired. URG!!! I can't believe I'm THAT GIRL. The annoying chick not paying attention while talking on her cell phone! I hate that girl! I yell at that girl all the time! And now--she's ME!!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

I Think I'm Going Crazy

Do you ever find yourself rehearsing conversations in your mind that you WISH you could have, but know you never will?

In describing myself, I've always said I'm the type that doesn't hold grudges. I forgive and forget quite easily--sometimes to the point that I really DO forget that someone has treated me badly, and then I find myself in the same situation a few months later when they do it again. It's true I don't really hold grudges--I simply can't. I'm the complete opposite of stubborn.

But I was thinking that there are a very few people in my life that have treated me badly or disappointed or frustrated me enough that I harbor a grudge--a BIG one. I mean, I don't think about it often. But when it comes up--I just sit there and go over and over madly in my head what I would say to them if I had the chance. And yet I know that if I DID say any of it to them, they'd think I was an emotional psycho and I'd look like a total idiot, and then I'd feel even worse. I think that is why I get so mad--I know there is absolutely NOTHING I can do about it. Nothing is more frustrating to me than to be deliberately misunderstood.

I remember in college this guy thought I'd done something that I didn't do. The evidence against me was pretty strong, but I maintained that I had not done what he thought I had. And he WOULD NOT believe me. No matter what I said. No matter how I explained. He had decided and that was that. It was utterly maddening. And the more I tried to explain, and the angrier I got, the more certain he was that I was "protesting too much."

It's all so very annoying. Why do I let things get to me? Why can't I just let it go? I've been back to work for one day and already the stress and frustration is creeping back. Everything I try to do, all my extra projects that I enjoy, are sabotaged by the same person--who isn't aware they are doing it, and would think I'm totally crazy if I pointed it out.

I think I'm going crazy. Maybe I am crazy. I remember a companion on my mission that made me crazy. She'd do something SO irritating, so I'd do it back, to show her how irritating she was. And then she'd accuse me of doing it! And tell me I'm irritating! And I was like, "But you started it!" and then guess what? I sound like a crazy idiot again.

Such is my life.

I'm going to bed.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

A Whole New Lagoon

We went to Lagoon on Tuesday. It's has been six or seven years since I've been there, and wow! It's a whole new park! I can't believe how many new rides there were! Everything was all newly painted and looked great! I have a new favorite ride. The Spider. It's friggin' awesome. It was there the last time I went, but it was closed. So I'm so glad I got to go on it! And then there was that new ride The Bat. WHERE did that come from? I don't remember anything in the commericals about that ride opening. Wicked was a great ride too--but I still liked the Spider the best!


Anyway, we went with our friends Heather and David--both of whom served with me in South Africa on my mission. We had a total blast! Heather, who didn't grow up here, pointed out that Lagoon must be total childhood nostalgia for me, since I was constantly pointing at things and saying, "I remember when..." And she's right--I used to go there every summer, sometimes several times. That's back when you could afford to do such things. Now, it's just so expensive! (Thanks to my sister-in-law Becky who tracked down those discount tickets for us! You saved us like $30 bucks!!)

And you know what? I finally got kissed on the Terror Ride. I've been waiting for that since I was like 12. I don't know why this is such a big deal, but it is. Because I've never gone to Lagoon with a boyfriend. How is that possible? And Trevor and I have never been together, either. HE hadn't been for about six or seven years, too! So, I required him to kiss me on the Terror Ride. I'm so glad he complied. I had a roommate once who told me that her FIRST kiss was at LAGOON with a BOY SHE MET there on the TERROR RIDE. It just gets better and better. That's like, every teenager's dream. Ok, maybe I was just a weird teenager. The picture on the left here, by the way, is me ON the Colossas. Heather took it while we were still on the ride! She's so funny!


There's not a ride at Lagoon I won't go on. But I found that I had a little more fear than I've ever had before--which I think is what being a parent does to you. And I got a little light headed on a few of the rides, like the Swings and even Colossas. I never get light headed! I'm getting so old! But--I wasn't as bad as our wimpy men! Though both of them are usually fine at amusement parks, they both had a few stomach issues. Heather and I were totally fine. At one point we just ditched them while they lay at the terrace, and went on a ton of roller coasters without them! They even had to buy some Dramamine! (How do you spell that?)



By 7:00 the boys were done--they refused to ride anything for the last two hours, the big babies. So Heather dragged me on to the Rocket as our last ride. It's one of those rides that you feel a lot of anticipation, and then--it's just OVER. The whole ride is like 2 seconds long.



We went out to eat after that, and then went back to Heather's house and watched a movie. We didn't pick up Afton from my Mom's until 1:00 a.m.! What a great day! Afton, on the other hand, did NOT have such a great day. She spent half of it with my sister Cindy and half of it with my mom. But the poor thing was sick! We had no idea--it just hit her that day! She was throwing up! Poor little thing. She slept in until 1:00 p.m. the next morning!



So, now I've been to Lagoon, I want to keep going every year. I'm hoping to have a family reunion there next year. Our family is at a great place to do that next year--even the littlest ones can ride SOME rides, and the older ones are big enough to go off on their own. I hope we can pull it off. It's no Disneyland, but still--I love Lagoon!


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

DREAD

A week and a half! That's all I have before everything changes! How did the time go by so quickly?? Usually, this is a fun time of year. I'm looking forward to going back to school. There's something exciting about brand-new 7th graders, the smell of sharpened pencils, and putting my room in order for the new year. But this year, I have never felt such a feeling of dread. I mean, when I think about school I get this deep dark heavy feeling in my chest. I DON'T WANT TO GO BACK!

I wish I could say the main reason is because I don't want to leave Afton and would prefer to be a stay at home mom. This isn't quite true. Now, when I mention aloud that I don't want to leave my baby, it' s hard not to cry. Because I DON'T. I love being home with her. But--I really don't mind being a working mom. I'd love to work part time--so long as work is a good and happy place to be.

But it's not.

That's why I am feeling such dread. Everything has changed so much at my school, moralle among the teachers is really, really low, and I don't get along with my boss at all. He doesn't like me. I don't really blame him--I'm a total psychopath around him. Somehow, he just brings the worst out in me. I think it started last summer when we had our first meetings before the start of the school year, and he told all of us that we couldn't use our cell phones during school hours. Everyone was pretty ticked, but I was HORRIFIED. I raised my hand, and said something like, "So, if I need to call my baby..." And then I got all choked up and couldn't finish and actually left the room a few minutes later and bawled in my classroom for 15 minutes. I'd just left behind my tiny new baby, and the idea that I couldn't use my cell phone to call the daycare whenever I felt I needed to--well, I couldn't take it. If I DON'T use my cell phone, then I'd have to call on my school phone which is in front of all my students. And people can't call you at school--it goes straight to voicemail. So if there's an emergency, my daycare can't call my phone? Are you serious? He never enforced that rule though. I talked to him about my problem later and he was fine. So see--he's not a bad guy.

But yes, that's where it started. And incidents similar to that continued all year long. One thing after another. I didn't handle any of them well. He thinks I'm a total mess. Again--I've earned that. But now that I'm not in his little favorites club, I'm pretty much a doormat. My opinions mean nothing. I have just shut up, say nothing, and wait till either he retires or I can find another place to work.

I don't want to go back! I don't want to leave my little girl! I don't want to feel that stress I felt all last year! Like when, in May, he refused to pay me for the hours I spend creating and keeping up the school website, even though he'd said earlier in the year that he WOULD pay me. Man, how I stressed over that! I needed the money so bad (and we're talking less than $200 here) but he refused. I was so tempted to pull down the whole website and let the parent complaints juts come rolling in. But luckily my department paid me for it, so it all worked out. But I was so upset and emotional all the time! How can I go into this new school year and stay calm and just NOT CARE?

Ok. I better stop. I'm sure this is not remotely interesting to anyone else. My boss is not a bad guy. He's actually a good guy. But somehow, we just don't work out. I'm not sure how to change that. I'm not sure I can. I think I'll just sit back and not care--and then what? Become like all those other junior high teachers that don't care? I don't want to be one of those! Grrr...Ok. The rant is over. I'm SO sorry...

Monday, August 9, 2010

Slow Results is Better Than...OH SUCK IT!!

I'm having a frustrating morning, fighting with that age-old deman--WEIGHT. I'm so sick of this crap. I really am. I was talking to my size 4 mother-in-law about it last night, and she sympathized, although she's never had to deal with it herself. I was so jealous. Can you imagine never having to worry about your weight? Are there really people like that?

I've been working out 4-5 times a week for SEVEN weeks now. I eat pretty healthy, too. I've been SO much more careful. And what do I have to show for it? A loss of only FOUR pounds. FOUR!!! What the hell!! Yes, I've lost 11 inches, and I can feel a small difference in my clothes, but...it's been seven freaking weeks! And when I say I'm working out, I'm REALLy working out. We're talking P90X, people! I have never worked out so much and so hard in my life.

So now, for the standard answers:

1. Muscle is heavier than fat. Oh shut up! Whether it's muscle or fat, I'm still fat! Does NOT help me, people!
2. Slow results is better than no results. Ok, I keep chanting this to myself. I know it's true. I mean, if I give up, there's no chance of it getting any better. If I keep it up, then eventually, something HAS to happen, right?
3. Are you counting your calories? Ok. No. This is my change this week. I have a great program to do it in (fitday) and I've got most of what I eat already entered. It really won't take very long. Maybe I'm eating more than I think I am. So that's my new goal this week--count the calories. I've tried the Weight Watchers and all kinds of other stuff, but in the end, old-fashioned counting is best. Gag.

You know, I've only lost a significant amount of weight once before in my life--25 lbs in 2004. I worked SO HARD to get that weight off. I was single then, and had a very flexible schedule. I was younger. And I had the motivation of, "Get the weight off or you'll never get married!" In all the years since then, everytime I tried to lose weight again I'd remember how hard I had to work then, and I'd know I wasn't ready to work like that this time around. And I'd know that I don't have as good a schedule, and I have a kid. And I have a husband. And I have a LOT more goin' on around my middle than before. And there's a couple of muscles in my middle that don't work any more thanks to a C-section. And now I have the motivation of, "Get it off now, before you have another kid and it's stuck there forever!"

So, despite all this whining, I'm still going. I'm still quoting to myself that adage of "Slow results is better than no results." The fact is, working out makes me feel good. And I don't beat myself up all the time thinking that I SHOULD be working out. At least I'm trying. But oh, when I see pictures of myself I just want to cringe. I refuse to be that person who WON'T have pictures taken because they are fat--I remember all too well how much fun it is to look at those "fat" pictures once you've lost the weight. When I see a bad picture, I think, "oh, one day I'm going to LOVE this picture..."

So, here's to protein shakes, chicken meatballs and spinach frittata's--I'm gonna keep going!!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Introducing REAL SCRAPPY!!!

Ok, you hoardes of breathless followers--I am introducing my new blog! That's right--I've started a new blog for digital scrapbooking.

I've found that there are a lot of digital scrapbooking sites that are oh so helpful and oh so overwhelming. Where do you actually start? Who can explain where to begin--in small increments, step by step, from the very beginning? Oh yeah. It's totally me. I teach 7th graders to use EXCEL for heaven's sake--how hard can Photoshop be? Having taught Photoshop to adults before, I figure this is the perfect thing for me to do!

I plan to update my blog each week with each new step. I've already got three posts now including an introduction, and two lessons. My site includes video instructions on how to get started! So, if you are interested in learning about digital scrapping, checkout http://realscrappy.blogspot.com

Please visit! Become a follower! Hope you like it!