always on the brink, trying never to show it...

Thursday, December 29, 2005

blasts from the past

Don't we all have those? I just had one. I don't know why I torture myself. It's that one song that transports me. It's so clear, so quick. I can almost see the funnel I'm spiraling through; spinning, colors blending, blurring together. It's visceral and I find myself gasping for breath as quietly as I can, in the hopes that nobody hears and interrupts my moment. Mambo Sun by TRex. I suppose the song itself doesn't matter. We each have our own. And I don't even think it's the song itself, although it has a certain, shall we say...F Me...feeling to it...

It's the thought behind it. That there was a someone who had enough passion for me, enough feeling, to sit down, find the song on a cassette (I'm old, I admit it), re-record it onto a new cassette, write me a letter professing undying love and put it in the mailbox. The promise, the shiny newness of young romantic love and lust.

Here I sit, at my computer, beer next to me, kids in bed. Not the same person that sent the cassette living in my house with me. That fire died out as quickly as it started. Just one day, *poof* he was gone, never to be heard from in a positive way again. I love the person with me. But there was never that got-to-have-you-or-die feeling from him. His is a slow, steady, pragmatic love, born of length, mutuality and, well, there's a certain soulmatish feel to it. It's better in the long run I think and I'm happier all in all. I wouldn't trade my life for another.

But sometimes the excitement of Mambo Sun transports me to a stinky little flat where we were all poor college kids finding our ways in the world. Those ways just didn't traverse together...

Monday, December 26, 2005

Post Christmas

We are past the time of joy and giving. We didn't give very much this year...I don't really care what Bush and his cronies tell me, we are not in an economic era of wealth and gain. The family we have created stands on the edge of an economic abyss and we are madly flailing our arms to regain some balance.

Now, I know we made some choices. We chose to have my husband give up his well paying job to become a teacher. And that in itself cost some cash. Then there's the part where he'd basically screwed up his previous educational experiences and needed to go to one of "those" colleges that cost a ton of cash and accept everybody. So there was the added business of the student loan...plus daycare costs for two young children, and here we are, a master's degree and two credentials later, trying to pay our bills each month. Seems sad, doesn't it? You give up money for the higher moral ground of serving children--our future citizens--and you find yourself in the poorhouse, barely able to make ends meet.

Truth told however, our idea of a sad Santa year is certainly another person's idea of a Christmas bonanza. Our son "finally" (in his long six years on earth, he has sadly been neglected in the video game arena) got his Gameboy. I keep waiting for the seizures to kick in and we had to have a discussion with him earlier today regarding the fact that he cannot only play Gameboy twenty-four hours a day. Our daughter is avidly writing all over her Leap Pad plus Writing thingamajig. She loves to write. There were a few moments where she threatened to huck the entire thing across the room when it wasn't responding as she expected it to (I suspect she gets that from me), but we were able to smooth things over with a fair amount of ease. And then there's the matter of heading out on a week's vacation to Orlando later this week. I'm panicked about the cash we're spending, but the reality is, we're going, we've bought the plan tickets, we've paid our maintenance fee on our timeshare, we can afford a fair amount. We feel poor, but it's all about perspective.

Family and neighborhood feuding, that's another story. Starting with a "Get the F*** out of my house" and ending with the neighbor across the street announcing that she's "done" with the neighbor next door...well, let's just say I've had some Pinot Noir, found my password to my blog account, and here I am...stories for another day. Hey, at least Christmas came early in the winter vacation of school hood this year and I still have almost two weeks of vacation left!

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

what would you want for your child?

Honestly, I ask myself this question every day, multiple times. And I shout it inwardly in my head at others all day long. And apparently psychic shouting doesn't help because other people continue to bumble through the day as if we don't have real kids' lives in our hands.

Take an on-going discussion this year. "Everard, you must write goals for Little Johnny in several areas--Language Arts, Math, Social Skills, Communication Skills, etc., etc. Little Johnny is only just turning three years old and your job is to teach him how to be ready for kindergarten in two years." Everard refuses to step up to the plate. This is his third year working with Little Johnny and all his mates and Everard completely resists taking any responsibility to Little Johnny's education even though he is Little Johnny's main defense against a cold hard world. I want to strangle Everard.

For example. Everard "specializes" in teaching children with Autistic tendencies. Today we were to have a meeting for Little Johnny's friend Jimmy, who, big surprise, has autistic tendencies. I knew that. Our speech therapist knew that. Our nurse knew that. Jimmy's mom knows that. How did Everard miss that? Jimmy has moderate retardation...no language, lots and lots of sensory issues--he flaps his hands, he rolls around on the floor, he sometimes trips over his own feet. It's hard to "assess" Jimmy in a traditional way because Jimmy is simply not a traditional kind of kid. And he's probably never going to be.

Still, I somehow wrote a report based on Jimmy's current functioning. The nurse wrote one. So did the speech therapist. And his home teacher. Not to mention his occupational therapist. Somehow, Everard is not sure where Jimmy is functioning (and I'm just making a wild guess here, but I suspect it goes hand in hand with Everard also missing that Jimmy has Autism) and thus, doesn't really know how to write goals for Jimmy.

You know, I do prefer being left. I really do. And I don't support firing teachers without due process. But Hell, I think there's something to be said for a longer waiting period before any of us acquire tenure! Because quite frankly, although I think Everard is very nice (a little milquetoast for my taste, but you know, he's nice), I don't think I'd want him for my child!

Monday, December 05, 2005


Today was seminar day. Something I'd agreed to go to, to be "educated" in a topic of choice--today's choice was a buffet of Asperger, Bipolar and Conduct Disorders. A smorgasbord, if you will pardon the expression.

Anyhoo, I'd forgotten completely that I'd agreed to this seminar...last week a coworker reminded me and asked if I wanted to carpool. My, December came quickly. So I gave some instructions to my graduate student that I thought inherently included the directive to "Stay here in the district" and went along on my merry way this morning. We were joined by several others from our workplace, dispelling any false beliefs/hopes/whathaveyou that we'd be cutting out early. And during the morning I was treated to several, "And here comes..." types of statements, none the least of which was more surprising than, "There is your graduate student." What the hell?

This is the second grievous incident. The first was a willy-nilly act of complete disregard for the fact that we are working with real, live children with real, live families. Today's incident included "skipping" at least one counseling session with a counseling student, at best, and completely disregarding what she knew she was supposed to be doing at worst. I'm hoping for at best, but thinking she's at worst.

I think she thinks she's on a playground of digitally cloned kids and she gets to play all she wants. I don't think she understands that people are counting on her to do what she is supposed to be doing.

This is not the first sign of her impulsive and flighty behavior.

I think I have to fire her. How do you fire somebody who is volunteering? And the problem with that is, it may just get her kicked out of her graduate program. I don't know, I'm not sure. But she found me late as a site supervisor, and I'm thinking there's a reason for that.

You should have seen the look on her face when she saw me standing in front of her. In my defense, I don't think I looked particularly frightening, but she visibly double-took and then stood at attention...I suppose I did that when my supervisors showed up during graduate school as well, but it was still a little disconcerting. Did she think I wouldn't figure it out? At least she was doing something toward her education.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

stage fright

So I'm not sure what it is about this forum. In all other forums I seem to generally be able to muster some kind of humor or humorous story. For some reason there is less vulnerability there for me? Have to think on that a bit. But here I just feel tonge-tied and silly, thinking this may not be for me after all...