walk with me

Fall Break is over but we had to get in just one more fun adventure because I promised.

Walk with me, I asked my clowns and most of them said yes. Stupid work responsibilities getting in the way for the rest to join me! Then again, work is good. Can I just say how proud I am of the strong work ethic my kids have? I can! Abby wanted to be with us. I wanted Abby to be with us for this adventure. But those procrastinators who filed extensions last April 15 for their income tax filings OF COURSE wait until the NEXT deadline to finally file which means Abby’s office is busy and Abby must work.

Next time, Abby. Next time I walk with you. I promise.

Meanwhile, this adventure today is here.

Walk with me, I asked them.

Sure, they said.

At this point they had no idea that our walk would be about 3.5 miles long.

Oops!

Seriously, if I told them I doubt they would have agreed, adventure or no.

And so we walked…

And stopped.

and looked…

and looked because it was a the kind of beautiful day that you just can not let slip away.

Walking just past the first tower, Hazel grabs a hold of my hand just a little bit tighter shouting, “Mima, we’re up so high! It’s kind of scary.

Exactly what you want to say to your acrophobic and agoraphobic Mima who is struggling mightily with anxiety when she is 220 feet above the San Francisco Bay and the Pacific Ocean.

It is kind of scary,” I agree. “I’m scared. I’m definitely scared.”

You are?

“Oh yes. But I know that I can do this. I look up at the towers and I hold your hand and I know that I can walk across this beautiful bridge on this beautiful day.”

Me too, Mima.”

And then she runs on ahead because OMG we are almost done!!!

Perfect day.

Perfect 3.5 mile walk.

Perfect Fall Break adventure in our own backyard.

CHecking this adventure off of my to-do list.

 

the Four Horsemen and other signs of the coming apocalypse

The End Times are coming!

Earthquakes.

Drought.

Wars.

Plagues.

And these two are getting along…

playing together…

happy to see one another…

HUGGING!!!

Prepare your hearts.

Gird your loins.

Pray.

Get your zombie kits ready.

The apocalypse is coming!!!

I do believe that I will see the apocalypse in my lifetime. And when it comes, I’m not repenting for anything I’ve done
~Nate Lowman

the last first grader in the whole wide world

The last first grader to lose their first tooth in the whole, wide world is Hazel Faye.

Go ahead, ask her.

Her Mima LITERALLY asks her every day and every day she yanks and pulls at her teeth, heaves a super heavy sigh and tells me no. There is complete resignation in her voice that this milestone will never happen when she tells me that she is the ONLY first grader who hasn’t lost a single tooth. There isn’t even one single, blessed wiggly tooth.

Poor Hazel Faye!

Then again she is so mature in every other way and growing up much too fast; so what’s wrong really with a delay?

For what it’s worth my darling Hazey Face, my kids’ dentist assured me once that it is perfectly normal and definitely okay. Oh, and your own Mommy did not lose her very first tooth until she was pretty much the last first grader in the whole wide world back in her day.

There’s time…lots of time. For now I am going to continue to savor my favorite gap-toothed, little girl smile.

my 100% track record

So far…yes, this.

Won’t lie, of late it has been wretchedly hard to maintain that 100% track record of mine. Thank goodness for the kind of people who do more than just offer the trite “let me know if I can help” bullshit then avoid you like the plague because that’s what happens with people in your circles when shit happens. It’s okay. I understand. I promise you that I’m not contagious.

Meanwhile, thank you Kari, Mike, Tori, Grace, Craig, Kim, Erika, Jenn and Brenda for little messages and reminders to hang in there. Thank you.

Thank you also my darling husband for just being patient and kind because more than anything that is what I need right now. Wait, I need hugs. I need lots of hugs. Thank you and thank goodness for Daniel and for Hollie sending Hazel and Fallon with hugs. Yeah, I know Hazel might be using these opportunities to get out of homework because 1st grade life is hard and Fallon is absolutely using the opportunity to get out of naps but those are mighty fine hugs and something to look forward to the next day, tomorrow, because yeah today is almost done.

inclusion, exclusion, privacy, the 1st day of school and, sigh, picking the battles

Here under The Big Top we are officially BACK TO SCHOOL!

Can I hear a YEAH, BABY!!!??

OH, YEAH BABY!!!

And for the first time since 1997 I only have one child of mine heading back to school which means…

yeah, I know it means this is my last baby and all my babies are growing up…

More importantly, this means that I only had ONE ream of repetitive back to school paperwork to fill out, also known as “Mom-work” in Daniel’s classroom this year. For the record, I got my Mom-work done.

Leading up to the first day of school was so much excitement and nervous energy…totally normal I assure Daniel. Hazel excitedly shared the day before how she couldn’t wait to go to her school and see her name posted under the name of her assigned first grade teacher. Who would it be? She was so excited with the anticipation of it all as were pretty much every other K-8 child in this town. It’s part of the Back to School tradition.

Daniel wanted to be a part of that too. Last year we went to his school the day before the first day to view the class lists and…nothing. We downplayed it reminding him that we had the letter from the district telling him what school he would be going to and he wiped away the tears but not the worry…what if his name wasn’t there for a reason? But the next morning the principal assured him that yes he was at her school and in Mrs. B’s 4-6 SDC class. It’s privacy concerns she tells me when I ask why his class list wasn’t posted.

Privacy?

Privacy. People might KNOW that he is in the SDC class, she explains with a warm smile.

Um, okay. They already know.

So this year I decide to call the school and ask do I bother to drive over to the school. Do I put my child through that feeling of exclusion again?

You don’t need to come, I am told. Daniel will be in Mrs. B’s 4-6 SDC class.

Okay.

YES! Daniel is thrilled. Daniel is also kind of disappointed.

Disappointed? The principal wonders why.

Well, he doesn’t get to participate in that annual ritual of going to the school the day before the first day and looking for his name…and then the names of his friends.

I’m reminded again of the importance to respect his privacy which is why the SDC classes are never made public…at least at this particular campus in the MUSD district.

I think the principal heard my head thud on my desk because she then commented that I might not like that policy.

I don’t. Daniel (and his classmates in Mrs. B’s 4-6 class) are known on campus. All of them spend some length of time every day in mainstream classrooms. They participate in all activities on that campus. Everyone knows them.

Respecting their privacy?

I don’t get that.

My son, and his classmates might be differently abled. Perhaps they learn at a different pace or in a different way. Still they are included in classroom settings with their also “normal” abled peers…and the benefits abound. We’ve seen it in interactions through the years with Daniel’s teachers, with his classmates and with their families. And we have seen our son, and his SDC peers thrive…thrive in the least restrictive environment for them, for their classmates (normal and different), for their teachers and support staff and for the families. Yes, some families and even a few teachers struggle with this, but overall the results are positive all around on campus and I imagine, wish, hope and pray will continue to grow and flourish as my son becomes a young man.

No, I don’t get it. I respectfully disagree with respecting their privacy, I explain to the principal. I’m glad that I called the school first, I tell her. I’d hate for Daniel to again feel excluded from this back to school tradition.

She never thought of it that way, she tells me.

I know.

I could fight. I could argue with her. But I don’t. You pick your battles. This isn’t even an argument I decide.

We need to focus on this.

6th grade life, people!!!

And let us not forget, 1st grade! Hazel Faye is now a 1st grader!!!