Title Optional and Nothing New

I started this blog because I enjoying reading blogs and have always wanted to be a writer. As I have aged I have found out that my creativity is severely deluded with my procrastination tactics. As I am four days late with my weekly installment of this blog that is not about anything interesting or enlightening thus far. I usually waste time playing World of Warcraft (Undead Warlock if you are interested) and scanning social media because I have minimal adult contact after the big transition. So thank you for interacting with my little slice of reality. Here is a poem because I (cough, cough) am busy and too distracted to write a post with thesis statements and supporting ideas or quirky insights about the world around me.

She cries everyday after school

be-cau-se

she likes to pout and demand

ev-ery-thing

I am confronted, hopelessly

disagree

I cannot give up and grant her

everything

Spring Break during Winter

My oldest has been off of school all week because of “Spring Recess”. (I am grateful she hasn’t had school because we have all had a horrible cold germy thing all week. She is down to a mild cough, no more fever or leaking eyes or nasal congestion.) I am rather annoyed that their break is so early or that they still call it spring recess, not sure which is the real bone I’m picking here.

It is the second week of March. School is ending this year on June 17th, which is two days later than originally scheduled because of the horrible weather we have had this season. Therefore, the kids have a full three months of school left after this break. They no longer align breaks with the Easter holiday, like they did when I went to school, which I understand. But they could have slid it another week or two toward actual spring and it would have broken up the semester a little better.

March 20 is the vernal equinox this year, which is fairly only next week. But we live “Up Nordt” and we will likely still have snow on the ground until the week after next (if not longer). Calling this time off Spring Recess is just making the school district look more incompetent than normal. Come up with a new name or put it back in the season of spring, not this lazy, uncreative and inaccurate one.

“Almost everything you do will seem insignificant, but it is important that you do it” Mahatma Gandhi

I recently quit my job at a company that I have worked for, for eleven years. That is over one-third of my life span, spent with one employer. I have been with the company longer than I have been a mother, longer than I have known my husband and longer than I have been a legal adult. I am not having nearly the identity crisis that I thought I would be, honestly.

For reasons too varying in relevance and privacy, I am now a stay-at-home-mom. Something I have hoped for and ran from in equal measure over the years. I have three daughters who are 6.5, 4 and almost 2 years old. As the reality of raising girls in the 21st century has sunk in, my view of myself and my gender as a whole have changed rapidly.  I am now someone who identifies as a feminist. Therefore this new position I find myself in is teetering toward a consistent balance with how I want my daughters to understand our home life, women’s and parents’ choices in society today.

Here I am, figuring it all out.

Back to Reality

Nana is beginning hospice care. Between her congestive heart failure and her recently failing kidneys, it is time. She is ninety three, she has lived an amazing and long life. But, its time for the rest of us to be okay with this. The past few years have really changed my relationship with my grandmother. Living with her for three years at the end of her life, I hope I was more a help than a burden. I know I was resentful and petty at times. It was just such a time of adjustment, watching her deteriorate, watching my children grow, watching myself channel my stress in the wrong directions. I know I made the right decision for my family and for Nana moving out this summer. And God was prepared. He sent Barb and Bill to our family and they have been great caretakers for Nana, much more diligent than I ever was.

I just pray this process is painless for her. I hope she is at peace. Now is the time to be together as a family and make sure Nana can enjoy all the wonderful branches to the tree she started. I wonder how everyone else is handling this. I wonder how much longer we have. So many thoughts.


An update on the rest of us:

Ben came home on Friday September 23, out of nowhere. He is now in a scheduling rotation at work in West Allis, not West Virginia. This rotation will last six months. Most likely the next rotation will also be in Wisconsin, as baby E or baby #3 is on the way. We are due around April 9, 2012.

We are beginning the extra craziness that is holiday prep for work. Charlotte is doing very well at school and Daphne is starting to use the potty. Life is good. My family is together. Anne, Matt and Phoebe are safe, sound, and only 5 hours away in Michigan. We are going to Elcho for Thanksgiving. God’s grace is being found in unexpected places.

Extension

Ben is going to be staying in West Virginia until about March. We found out this week, but I knew it was going to happen since I heard his roommates had each had second rotations there. I am actually okay with the news, because I knew it was coming. I am very lucky to have a great support system here at home. Also allowing me to see everyone, that he misses, daily or weekly.

What I am not okay with:
Let’s start with the superficial- his cat
He still is pooping where he can find carpet in the same room as his box. Plus Xavier, the cat, is really lonely and whines A LOT.

The tougher stuff- missing his smell on his pillow

– doing his clothes in the laundry
– not getting his opinion on house hold mini dramas or decoration/ organizing joys of having a new place

The toughest stuff- the girls

Charlotte asks where her daddy is and I have to tell her at work, we will see him in a month (3 weeks from Thursday) for a visit.

When he comes home and Daphne takes her time to go see him.

When Charlotte cries about missing him.
 
A little back story:

Ben and I can handle this because we have done it before. When he started grad school in Denver (we live near Milwaukee) we found out we were expecting Charlotte. So I asked Ben to record his voice on a tape so I could play it to my belly in order for her to be comfortable and soothed by his voice. It is a very nice tape with a little history of us and some readings from the Tao De Ching and the Tao of Pooh.

I decided we should listen to that tape last night. I think it might be a weekly routine for us. Daphne hadn’t heard it before and it has been a few years since Charlotte didn’t know she was listening to it.

So we are doing what we can: Skype, phone calls, texts and all that. I just hope he is doing well with less distractions and no family base around him to ground him and keep him moving. I am just so grateful that he is safe and only 750 miles away. We get monthly visits. We are so lucky.

Moving…in the right direction.

We signed a lease for an apartment today. Which means we are moving out of my grandmother’s basement, at long last. Now to survive my family for the next month until we actually move. To say that they are going to be disappointed will be a supreme understatement. My family depends on me to be here for my grandmother whenever I am not working. She likes to know where I am at all times, you see. Now I am very lucky that my grandma is still here, plus mentally she is as fit as a fiddle. That alone is quite an accomplishment at her age, almost 93. However the stress of taking care of her and the obtrusive expectations turn me into someone I do not want to be, someone my children do NOT deserve. So we are leaving in a month; I made sure to let my whole family know as soon as possible so that the planning process can begin.

Ben and I had a great weekend together and with our respective friends and families. We got to really discuss our future as a family and it has gotten me really excited for the turn our life is taking. We have been starting the process of buying a house, but that is on hold. Ben is here and gone for the next two or three years with his job, so it isn’t the best time to buy a house for us right now. Baby steps here we come! I am really excited about having a bathroom with a tub, that works and where the water doesn’t wreak. But really, there is a lot of excitement to come for us, I am not going to dwell on the petty things.