Tuesday, October 28, 2014

working mom.

on monday i got up early and showered, fed my kid breakfast in the bathroom while i blow dryed my hair, (don't worry, our toilet is in a separate room from the sink room, but let's be honest my bathroom is a disaster.) and dropped him off with a sitter (my sister in law) to the chorus of wails and tears. and then i drove to work. i have joined the legions of working mothers.

around june, i was starting to feel restless. i'd finally felt like i got the hang of remying for the most part. sleep schedules were back to normal, he wasn't taking a bottle anymore and was eating solids really well. it was like, i'd put him down for a nap and while he was sleeping, shower and clean the house. then he'd wake up around 1pm and i'd think, now what?

i'm not trying to say that being a stay home mom is easy, but i was starting to need to move to a new chapter. that first year of remy's life, i was so overwhelmed with learning to care for a baby and recovering from my pregnancy and postpartum, that the idea of a new challenge was the last thing on my tired mind. after a year, i felt used to my mom gig.

i went over a lot of options in my head. what to do next? looked into masters' programs. (with travis's military stunt going on, didn't seem like good timing in case we move.) have a second baby? i thought good and hard about this one. starting feeling like, hmmm maybe i could grit my teeth and survive hell one more time. then i did research about the odds of getting HG again, and it's 86 percent. plus the chance of it being worse than the first pregnancy. i reread my pregnancy blog posts and made the decision again, nope. not happening.

so i thought, maybe a job? with travis leaving for six months (yeah, you heard me right. six. months.) to basic training and AIT, i would need an excuse to get me out of the house and interacting with other adults. i talked to my mom and travis's mom about it, and then my mom got online and found a job through their school district. i applied that night, got a call for an interview a week later, and was offered the job later that day. like it was all meant to be.

it's a mentoring job for secondary students who are struggling with attendance, behavior, etc. i'll have a caseload and will meet with the kids every week to help them stay on track academically. i'll work with their caseworkers, foster parents, judges, and teachers to make sure things in their lives are going as they should be. i couldn't have designed a job more suited to me! it's part time hours and many of the hours will be my choosing. my boss is really great. the team is great.

last week was a two day training and it was a little intimidating. i was by far, the youngest person in the room. many of the people there had been in the education system for 30 years. they all spoke the lingo of public education acronyms that flew over my head. i kept trying to remember the lessons i've learned from being a photographer. even if you have no idea what you are doing, pretend like you do and everyone else will follow your lead.  

so i started participating. i even got up to do a role playing exercise in front of the class. although i did get nervous and awkward and blurt out, "okay, i'm going to read my part in a man's voice. just pretend i'm a man." and then i read everything in a deep grunty voice. one person laughed, my boss.
bless you. 

i've been battling the mom guilt. more times that i can count, i heard speakers in church say, it's better when the mom stays home. mothers should stay home and fathers work. i wonder, am i being selfish? if i don't have to work, should i? what about all those moms who don't have a choice and have to work to survive? their children love them. remy will still love me right? i'll still be his favorite right?

all i know is, after working, i enjoyed coming home and spending the evening with remy even more that i would have had i been home the entire day. i really liked sitting in a room with other adults, wearing pants that weren't meant for yoga, and talking about things i'm passionate about.

then there was the whole bit about working in the high school i attended.
i did not like high school. when i remember high school, it's all a haze of sleeping through classes, feeling empty, trying to avoid the kid who assaulted me, hating the way i looked, being harassed by so many of the guys about my big chest, not doing well in class, and so on.
it was strange to park in the staff parking lot and walk through those same halls. everything smelled the same and mostly looked the same. i even saw several of my old teachers. even the pervy old gym teacher who used to ogle my legs. big surprise, he ogled my legs several times before recognizing me and saying hello. not much has changed around there. i just hope to reach even one kid who feels as alone and hopeless as i did.

anyway, change is good and all that. i'm excited for this new chapter and what it will bring.


Monday, October 20, 2014

idaho falls trip.

every year around harvest time, my mom get that idaho falls ache in her. so she, remy, and i packed up her car and took a trip to spend time with grandma and grandpa. (mostly grandma, as the menfolks were busy harvesting "spuds".)

it is always heavenly to visit grandma reed. their farmhouse is quaint and just what you'd want a farmhouse to be. there are always garden fresh fruits and veggies on the counters or being canned. breakfasts are hearty and cooked with shameful amounts of butter. except that at grandma's, you don't feel any shame! it's so quiet and dark in their basement, remy and i sleep in late.

the view from their front yard.

remy and oma both loved waking up to each other! and i loved that oma changed every poopy diaper the whole trip. my mom is amazing.

harvest time means grandma's cinnamon rolls! every year she takes them out to the workers during the afternoon. this year was special; i got a lesson from the master.

this. is the recipe she follows. my grandpa's mom's recipe.

so that's why they taste so good...

grandma always remarks on her hands, that they are old and wrinkled. i've always loved her hands. watching her use them to make those rolls, how she didn't use measurements, but went by the feel of the dough.

 the next morning, i was in charge of rolling them out.
( thanks for these photos mom!)

remy loves exploring the farm, but insists on holding my hand around the big trucks. 

remy with his "twin" cousin, leona, who is four days older. we always try to get a cute picture of them together, and we never succeed.

four generations. i can't see any family resemblance here.

my "twin" cousin annalee was so sweet and took time out of her busy schedule to take us for a ride on her horse, texas. annalee has built a great business training horses their riders. remy was nervous at first, but loved the ride. (he has a horse obsession going on these days.)

with christi out celebrating the end of the spud harvest. (she's like the first lady of the farm, as she's married to the guy running things.)

the trip was topped off with a great time driving home and singing the phantom of the opera at the top of our lungs. note remy clutching his wolf with a nervous look on his face.

great weekend away with my loves!


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