Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Where the hell have you been?

So...I received an email today stating that it's been almost two months since I posted. That's a long time. I can't really explain why, or how, the weeks compounded - they just did.

Our lives have been eventful and uneventful at the same time.

My job has proven to be stressful, challenging and somewhat fulfilling all at the same time. This is my 17th year in school counseling. Let's just say I'm in it for the summers off and the free health insurance. I know I am making a positive impact on the adolescents and families I serve, but I truly am so burned out that I may have a nervous breakdown one of these days if I hear too many more tragic stories.

Chris' job is a godsend. He is happy, motivated, and for the first time - content. His somewhat frequent travelling hasn't been too bad. The kids and I have adapted.

Harrison's second grade year is going so smoothly I just want to scream it from the mountain tops. He has yet to have any behavioral problems. He is academically on top of things - still loves to read, passes his spelling tests with ease and completes all his homework with a minimum of a stink. He has a couple of good pals and seems truly happy. His latest love is watching professional and college sports - mainly football and basketball. It's really cute to hear him yell to us scores of games we could really care less about. I'm just happy that he's able to focus on something that long. This is quite a change.

Ella loves Kindergarten, but has grown into this emotional, moody mess of a teenager. I know she's only five, but I really think she has the temperment of a 13 year old. It snuck up on us and we are rapidly trying to contain the behaviors before they suck us dry. She enjoys school, has a billion friends, but fights us on the learning-to-read thing. She'll do it, but only on her terms. I vaguely remember this exact behavior with two young siblings of hers before her, so I don't know why I'm so shocked.

Her big event of the last two months was a trip to the emergency room. She is a clutzy gal. (DO NOT TELL HER I SAID THAT.) My dad always called me a "clutz" and I am truly emotionally scarred, but she is my daughter so I guess I should have expected it. She runs into something, or falls down, every day. One day about three weeks ago, she fell in the lunch room and hit her forehead on the corner of a table. I received the call at five minutes after noon and at 4:55 pm we finally left the emergency room. Her cut was on her eyebrow and they decided to glue it instead of stitches. I really think they did this because the screaming that occurred when they tried to look at was so loud and distressed, they probably could imagine what would happen if they tried to touch it.

The remodeling around the house is making slow, but sure, progress. Chris has taken over all the work. He is a very thorough craftsman, and only one person, so it will still be awhile. The backyard deck/fireplace project is under snow, so at least I don't have to look at how "undone" it is. The downstairs, however, is taking Chris' attention front and center. We may be drywalling the extra bedroom and bath in the next few weeks. Then it's tile, plumbing fixtures, paint, etc. You know, simple stuff.

And that brings us to today. December 4th. The holidays.

The fireplace has been on overdrive for the last two weeks. The Christmas decorations are slowly coming out and the tree will be up this weekend. But my thoughts continuously drift to my holidays in the past. We will not be going back to Minnesota for the first time since we moved to Utah. I was really upset for quite awhile, but have recently decided that this is the best decision for all of us. We are going to start new traditions, continue old ones and savor our family on our terms.

Now if I could just stop reacting to all the angels I keep running across.


mamalife said...

Have been wondering where you were. Thinking of you and hoping the kinks work themselves out.

The Hotfessional said...

Carol, Glad you and yours are okay. Missed reading your posts.

Karen T-H said...

Whew! So glad to hear that you are [just] having family life in the mountains. LOVED (and strongly related to) your comment about about the five year old teenager. We have one of those, too, in our four year old granddaughter, Ella. Kindergarten isn't ready for this one!
Enjoy your very own holiday season, in your very own way. The freedom to do that is a gift.

Crazy MomCat said...

I'd gotten awful about commenting, but I was still around lurking and wondering what had happened to you! Glad you're doing OK.

I think the main reason I love reading your blog is that I think our son's are just almost the same person! My 2nd grader has had a similar year and is a football fanatic suddenly. Too funny!

I'll think positive thoughts for your step-son and hope he ends up with you all. I know that must be so hard.

blackbird said...

Hello you!
I was just thinking about you...

Rachel said...

I'm so glad to hear from you and hear the update. I wondered what had been happening out your way.

Julia said...

your kids sound great. I hope Ben is able to go live with you, you sound like a very caring family. I've been checking your blog at least weekly and hoping you'd soon be back : )

Anonymous said...

Was getting worried about you.


Kbreints said...

Good to hear from you!

Meg said...

I am SOOOO glad you are back. So much of your post I could say...ditto for me. School, house projects, kids...

p.s. Lots of snow in MN already!

Anonymous said...

good to hear your voice!

hey do you by chance know what's in a hot toddie?

Loralee Choate said...

I hope that you keep posting. It's hard to find bloggers in Utah that write things I relate to.

J3ff m@cd0ug@11 said...


meant to leave a comment on your previous blog that i also wear my mom's clothes--she had a lot of cashmere sweaters (lucky me!) and i love wearing them and thinking of her. some are a bit old-ladyish, but it's pull-offable. at least in my mind.

good luck with your oldest stepson...my in-laws (actually ex-in-laws) had a similar situation with their son; and were quite nervous about him moving in with them and how it would affect their family (he is 15) because of his behavior. He ended up choosing to move in with them this fall and it has been far better than they hoped; with a regular routine and clear boundaries he has become a better behaved kid and the disruptions they anticipated didn't happen to the degree they had dreaded. hope your experience is similar.

take care of you.