If you are looking for a new patron in 2016, be sure to check out the Saint Generator. It is a great way to find out about a saint you may not have previously known.
May your 2016 be everything you hope it is.
My 20th wedding anniversary is on 2/9/16. Everyone knows that I got married the day after my 21st birthday. That was kind of handy since I honeymooned in Las Vegas - would have been awkward not to be able to drink and gamble with my husband ('cause I'm all about the drinking and gambling).
I celebrated another anniversary of sorts last week. It was a year ago that my friendship with the best friend I ever had ended. We were friends for more than a quarter of a century. There was no big blowup or anything (if we ever fought, it was only because I was petty and bitchy in high school) - just a decision that our friendship had run its course.
My wedding day is one of the happiest of my life (naturally). The day that my best friend exited my life is one of my saddest. I observe both anniversaries. One I look forward to all year. The other I dreaded all year (I just observed the first anniversary).
What's my point? Stupid Facebook, with its asinine habit of doing the wrong thing at the wrong time, decided to "celebrate" the anniversary (there's that word again!) of my FB friendship with my friend's sister by showing me this picture - a picture which just happens to conflate everything!
...no, not that kind of withdrawal. The kind where, when you're discouraged or sad, you don't write anything online because you don't want to come off as totally negative. That kind. It's funny that even as I write this, another situation, um, develops. I always wonder how much of a child's "disorder" or problems is (are) tied to the way in which they interact with their parents. Yes, of course, there is a predisposition there. Chemical imbalance? Sure. Screwed up wiring? Okay. But how much has to do with those interactions? My son pushes so hard. And I push back. I wake up every morning resolved not to push back, but push back I do. There are two things at work, I think. First, there is definitely the, "You can't talk to me like that" working. I can't deny it. There is also very much the notion, though, that I have to make sure that this kid has to be able to grow up and function in society - that my ignoring his crap (as tempting as that is) will not, ultimately, do him any favors. How I wish I knew the answers.
I have remembered this quote since the first time I heard it many years ago, long before I had children. If it gave me a lump in my throat then, it makes me cry now. It is so, so true. I was texting Therese late one night last week trying to explain what it is like to be a mother whose daughter is growing up and away. That prompted me to look up this quote again. It aired on ER in the second season. Dr. Lewis was talking about Little Susie (the niece she is raising until her sister reclaims her):
"I always knew you loved your children, but I never realized how much you fell in love with them. Little Susie was like a story book, every smile a new page to be poured over, touched, remembered...I loved my storybook. For the first time in a long time, I didn't feel so alone."
You do fall in love with your children, deeply in love. And you don't fall out of love with them just because they get older. Like all love affairs, the ones you have with your children hurt, but unlike most love affairs, it is very hard to express to other people what you feel and why you feel it. Also, with all other love affairs, you are constantly growing closer. With your children, you are always growing farther apart (in proximity), at least you are if you're doing it right. You have to be letting them know that it's okay to go - that they'll be fine and that you'll be fine. But it's hard...
Mirror by Sylvia Plath
I have often said that if you find it hard to get motivated in the morning (whether because of depression, which has been my problem since I was very young, or just because you're not a morning person), find something to look forward to. For some people, that's as easy as knowing that you'll have that first cup of coffee. That's definitely the first thing that makes me leap out of bed in the morning (it doesn't hurt that I'm basically a morning person). I also have things that I look forward to most days that are specific to those days, though. I always remember the Friends episode where Monica was explaining that just because she looked forward to Mondays because that's when her People Magazine came, that didn't mean she was shallow. I realized that I, too, looked forward to certain days because of certain little "pick-me-ups." Everyone has their own, and they change - often frequently.
For now, though, here are some of mine. I'll leave off the weekend because, well, it's the weekend!
- Monday - it's been my favorite day of the week since I finished with my grad school classes. Monday is a fresh start, a chance to get right everything I got wrong last week. It's a chance to get a head start. It's also the day my favorite podcast - "Lore" comes out.
- Tuesday - my two favorite emails get delivered to my inbox almost first thing in the morning: The Reader and The Lineup. The former is "Five Bookish Bites delivered to your email each week," and the latter is "where murder and mayhem is delivered daily." I know, but what can I say? I have always loved true crime. When I was around 11, I checked out the encyclopedia of murder from the library so often they just should have given me the darn thing.
- Wednesday is the one day of the week I don't have to leave the house - an introvert's dream!
- Thursday -- nothing to love about Thursday. Thursday is about endurance. No, wait! "Thinking Sideways" (another podcast I really like) comes out on Thursdays! New Bitmojis come out on Thursdays!
- Friday - Henry's day off!
Is there anything that Apologia Educational Ministries doesn't do? Great science curriculum, Constitutional literacy, the really neat iWitness books...and planners? Yes! Apologia's The Ultimate Homeschool Planner is the most complete paper and pencil planning system I have ever seen. Available in three colors (I received and reviewed the blue), this planner has *everything* you as a homeschooling parent could possibly need.