My oldest daughter is heading back to college to finish out her junior year in just a few days. There are many things to be done. She is a list maker. Lately, as her personal stress begins to mount, she’s taken to vocalizing these lists. I find it interesting to note, that she repeatedly mentions two things. She reminds us all, that we still have to do our White Elephant Gift Exchange. (No, we haven’t done that yet. It’s been tough to get everyone together the last few days.) My daughter is also insistent upon creating her New Year’s Resolutions for 2012. This year, I just don’t share her enthusiasm.
Here in my neck of the Pacific Northwest woods, we’ve experienced some strange weather this winter. First, it started off with an unusually long summer. We were still having 80-90 degree weather in October. Summer was followed by an unusually short autumn. I think it lasted two weeks. Since then, we’ve had more rain than we usually do, more flood warnings than we have had in years, and wind. Wind warnings of all things! We’ve also had snow, something that usually doesn’t happen here until January or February, if it happens at all.
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It’s Christmas Day. Many of my friends and all of the rest of my family will be waking to stuffed stockings and gifts wrapped elegantly and placed neatly under or around the Christmas tree. Later they will enjoy a feast. My day will roll very differently. There are hardly any presents under my tree. The stockings hang limp and lifeless by the fireplace. This year I am alone on Christmas Day.
As a single parent the holidays can be tough. For many single parents, with an alternating holiday rotation in the parenting plan, Christmas or the holidays, must be modified. In my situation, one of us has the kids on Christmas, the other gets them Thanksgiving and New Year’s. Others work it out so that one person has the kids on Christmas Eve, and the other has them on Christmas Day. This seemed to disruptive to me. I really don’t care to interact with any of my ex’s during the holidays, and though it was hard at first, I am glad it worked out this way for us. Read the rest of this entry
There are rare occasions when I find myself wide awake in the wee hours of the night, but the reason does not originate from the stress in my life. I’m not awake because I can’t sleep. I’m awake, instead, because I have slept and quite soundly. Such was the case this morning.
I’ve already been up and made coffee, silenced my alarm before it could sound, wandered around the house checking in on each of my four sleeping children. The cats, nocturnal, vaporous beings that they are, slink past me, around me, as I move through the house, like water around boulders in some ethereal stream.
This morning I’m waxing reflective about the journey my little family has been on for the last 12 years. I ponder the heartbreaks, the tragedies, the disappointments, the obstacles, the defeats. Read the rest of this entry