So, here I am. (looks at me) Sitting at a bar (don’t worry, it’s the breakfast bar of my new home here in the Belly Button State. I know, Kansas is not really called the ‘Belly Button State’ (actually, I don’t know WHAT the state’s nickname is… like Florida is the ‘Sunshine State’ and Georgia is the ‘Peach State’. I should Google what Kansas is called… later.
I’m trying to be patient as I try to explain to my almost 11 year old how to load and start the dishwasher, while helping my first grader with her math (never mind that my middle schooler has disapeared to his room, my third grader is playing on his father’s computer, and the toddler is just sitting on the floor, doing nothing at the moment which is suspicious in and of it’s self). My first thoughts are- Hey, I’d be quicker if I did it myself. Don’t worry, those thoughts were quickly squished by my laziness under the guise that I want to make my sons to be of high quality marriageable cloth, but really, I’m just tired today and don’t want to load the dishwasher.
Especially since I have to clean up the kitchen from dinner still. That in and of its self sucks all on its own, so I’m having my son run them. But in good almost-eleven-year-old manner, he’s playing dumb. Maybe he thinks if he asks me where things go inside the dishwasher, or if he can use the liquid soap from the counter in it, I’ll just toss my hands up and say that I will do it.
But I won’t, because frankly I still rather explain the process to him as if he was a coma patient who’s been asleep for the last 50 years and just learned about these new technologies right this minute.
Now, the first grader is another story. It’s sad, but I swear she’s lucky she’s pretty. I hope that she remains pretty because she’s not exactly what we’d call a Rhode Scholar. I get that she’s only six, and a lot can change, and I’m even HOPEFUL that she’ll get brighter, but if not, well… we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it.
At the end of last year, she was really good in math (for a kindergartener, that is). She could do simple math problems, and was figuring out times tables and the like. Apparently, she caught herself a case of the ‘Summer’ and a bad one at that. She brought home her homework. It’s just a single sheet of paper. It basically says something like this:
Jill has 5 dogs. Nate has 2 dogs. If Rodger comes along with his 4 dogs, how many dogs are there?
There are directions, like circle the numbers, under line the units, draw a picture. Solve.
She got the right answer (11), but she drew three dogs (or horses, not really sure what the hell they’re supposed to be). She circled the numbers and underlined the units (dogs), but only after I pain-stakingly walked her through it.
The toddler. What can I say about him? He’s an aggressive little guy. I have a feeling that I’ll be getting phone calls from unhappy parents come pre-school time. He gets it in his head that he wants his Bpo-bpoes (kisses). He will jack you up by your shirt with his fat little fists and kiss you on the lips (if you’re lucky, his mouth will be closed) and then go-Mwah! It’s cute (to me) because I’m his mother, even when he’s jacking me up in the Wal-mart (and that gives me a fear of becoming a ‘People of Wal-mart’).
I bought him a laptop (the toddler) because frankly trying to work on anything (including my school work) was impossible during his waking hours. He could SMELL the laptop opening from clear across the house and would come running, hands outstretched to start hacking away at other people’s bank accounts and watch YouTube videos of Katy Perry. I finally found one I liked for him (a $15 cheapo that WASN’T purple). It has like 10 keys on it (shapes) that make songs and lights echo through the house, as well as animal and instrument sounds, but it gives me the freedom to not hang from the ceiling like Spiderman to check my email.
My third grader, love him, but I really hate his new school. It’s a ‘special’ school for ‘special’ kids with ‘special’ needs. It’s all very ‘special’. I was fine that he couldn’t go to the same elementary school that my almost eleven year old and my first grader go to. I knew he had ‘needs’ that might need to be met elsewhere, but the minute I was shown the padded room (serious to God) and explained that the staff at his ‘special’ school have all been trained in properly restraining kids… and not to worry, sometimes bruises and rug burns happen when the restrained kids are thrashing about… yeah. I do not like the school. I don’t care how ‘special’ it is. I get that my son is emotionally impaired, but really… a padded room, restraints, and possible bruises/rug burns… it’s just a bit much for me to stomach.
Today was his second day. So far, so good I guess. I don’t like that their main focus is on behavior, and that the distant second is actual education. It makes me worry and fear that maybe he will never be ‘normal’. He’s supposed to start transportation services tomorrow (and the horrible person that I am, all I can think about is- OMG, my son has to ride the short bus… we used to make fun of the kids on the short-bus… we still do among ourselves).
Then I get to worrying that maybe Emotional Impairment skips every other kid because my middle schooler has it (in a different form), then my third grader, which leaves the toddler being the next in the pattern. And I worry about the fact his soft spot hasn’t sealed yet, and that he doesn’t really talk much (just mama, dada, thank-you, bye-bye, hello, Alex). I tell myself to calm down… he can nod yes (with his whole head and shoulders getting into it when he gets excited), he shakes his head no, or shakes his hand no with the palm facing down.
What will be will be.
But for now, I’m driving my third grader to his ‘special’ school and trying to talk to my toddler like he’s a grown up in hopes of fostering a broad vocabulary.
And this has gotten me a car that likes to shimmy every once in a while, who flips it’s lights on (check engine and the air bag lights… of which I giggle at the air bag light because it looks like a big ol’ head in someone’s lap getting mouth-lovin’… man do I have issues). I’m hopeful it’s not serious. I worry about the SUV over heating and my husband deploying, and not being able to get a job, and having no furniture, and the cost of food being so high.
I honestly wouldn’t know what to do with myself if everything went smooth and easy-peasy.
I’d die of boredom.
That, or I’d finally get off the anti-anxiety medications.