Posts Tagged ‘change’

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Describe a Moment of Change

June 7, 2017

And how you dealt with it.

Or at least I hope that is what the question was. Now that I think back, I hope it didn’t read a Moment of Challenge. But I think my answer might still apply.

I had my first of what I hope will be two interviews for a 12-month position at the school board. This was one of the questions.

My answer?

A chuckle. Then I answered, “I go through great change every 75 days!”

I spoke about how the girls and I work as a unit, stronger together. I spoke about some times getting only 12 hours notice. About putting myself aside to help my daughters adjust to life without the Chief. For 21 years. I talked about how we as a family have discussed the ramifications of what a 12-month job would mean for us, especially while the Chief was at sea.

You have to have routine but you have the be flexible enough for the changes that pop up. Or challenges.

Next up I hope to be one of two candidates called in on Friday for a follow-up interview with the Big Man. A decision will then be made either late Friday or on Monday before the School Board Meeting. Sigh. I hate waiting. Good thing T1 is getting her wisdom teeth out and I have that and house cleaning to occupy my time.

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With Grateful Hearts

December 26, 2014

We just sat two hours in traffic for a trip that should have taken roughly 50 minutes. It had surprisingly only taken those 50 short minutes the previous 5 times we’d done in the past three days. I think we’re ready to sit at home for a little bit.

Newsboys drummer Duncan Phillips asked on his Instagram photo post this morning “As we end another Christmas season, I wanna know if you all got what you wanted, and if so, what was it?” and I will keep my opinions to myself about some of the posts but it got me thinking about our Christmas.

While so much has changed–friends have lost loved ones, friendships have died an unnatural death because of earlier events this year (see Parenting 1, 2, & 3), and for the first time in many years I wasn’t able to go to the local Candlelight Tour of Homes (something that always got me in a Christmas mood and something that I did for me)–I am not as moody or not in the Christmas spirit as I was last year or in other years if the Chief wasn’t home. Maybe my month of Thankfulness has left a residual feeling of good will or a peace that allows me to roll with things a bit more. Maybe it is because the girls are older and we were sans the spoiled temper tantrums we had last year although they are still pretty good at picking on one another.

Whatever it is … I’ll take it.

Sure I don’t have the energy I’d like, but it isn’t leaving me in a depressed funk. I think the Chief has been a little more understanding of the lethargy that makes me a little less than productive (and yet I managed to sub 3 days straight for the first time and I think he appreciates that even more). I think the Chief and I are a little more appreciative of each other.

So to answer you, Mr. Phillips, what I got for Christmas:

1. being able to sponsor two students at a residential foster case school along with our scout troop and being able to send T1 and T2 on a mission trip with the church to deliver those presents and minister to those students. I think our children got the bigger blessing of being able to serve others and gain an appreciation for the smaller things in life.

2. the Chief asked for a relief to cover him for two extra weeks and then a week before Christmas that relief told the Chief to stay home for Christmas. I guess because I’ve had experiences with other MMs and their spouses not being so generous or taking our small children into account I am especially grateful. I plan to send a card and some cash in the Chief’s seabag to give to his relief as they do the change-over to say “thank you and enjoy a night out on us.” As of this writing we still aren’t sure of when the Chief will actually rejoin the ship.

and 3. being able to anonymously give. As the Chief and I had conversations about life insurance and other uncomfortable but necessary things in light of a recent tragedy, I told him that it was weighing on my heart to by-pass the online funds and give directly to the family a substantial cash donation so that they could have some now. The Chief agreed on my amount and we asked our congregation to facilitate a check to allow us to be anonymous. The other part of this story is that I had been looking since Black Friday for a wok for the Chief–something he’s asked for but he has specific needs and because I wouldn’t just go and buy him a table saw, I’d usually just get him a gift card, I was about to give up and do the same for the wok–and on the 21st I had confessed to the Chief that I really didn’t have anything for him under the tree. He just shrugged and said, “We just took care of my Christmas gift [the check]”. When I say I admire the Chief for his generosity, that is an understatement. Truly.

And it is these things I think that have carried the Christmas spirit through this month for me. A busy but fulfilling and rewarding month (even if my race wasn’t ideal) and one that wasn’t too stressed out. We enjoyed our scout talent show and party (and saw a menorah lighting for the first time); the girls’ winter concerts and the Chief was here to see them!; a holiday party at one of my best friend’s; babysitting my nephews while the girls were on their mission trip (and giving my sister and her husband a night out by themselves for the first time in a year); Christmas Eve with my in-laws; Christmas day with my parents; and another family gathering on short notice today–even if we say in two hours of traffic to get home.

If I had to look back, I am so blessed to be in such a different place than I was a year ago, even with all the changes. And I love being able to give to others and present enough to do so.

Merry Christmas to all. God Bless.

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Welcome to the World!

January 24, 2012

My sister had another boy yesterday. Cousin IT’s brother will be called Flat Stanley, declared Thing 1. (long story….)

Because the C-section was scheduled for 0-dark-30 about an hour and half north of me (so during rush hour traffic on a cold, dreary winter morning) my sister graciously said I did not have to be there. I was relieved but I feel bad for her nonetheless.

When I had T1 and T2, I had my husband and my best friend in the room. My sister was there but at the last minute the nurse kept her out–also telling my mother to leave. My in-laws were waiting in the hall. For my sister, my mother was keeping Cousin IT. She has no living in-laws (and brother and sister in-laws live states away). This must be what it is like for a true military spouse.

We went up in the afternoon to visit. I planned on lying and saying both girls belonged to my sister. Instead I said they were mine and that T1 was 14 and T2 was 9. T1 could go back but not T2. UGH. I probably should not have lied. Okay, I know I should not have lied. It set a very bad example for the girls. T2 and DH stayed out in the hall and T2 got M&Ms and got to play on DH’s Kindle Fire.

T1 got to hold the little peanut. 6 lbs. 10 oz. TINY! Mine were 8-6 and 9-2 (would have been 10 lbs. if I had gone to 40 weeks!). Even she felt a little uncomfortable with how small he was. So I took over and held him, talking to my sister. She had a much better time–amazing what an anesthesiologist who is on the ball can do! The nurse came in and said we could take Mr. Flat to the receptionist window for T2 and DH to see. That was very nice of them to help arrange that.

Back in the room I picked him up again, “I still don’t like babies but I will hold you today.”

We stayed until it was time for him to get his bath and my sister could get a chance to rest. We would later stop by and visit with my mother and Cousin IT.

On the way home, T1 asked what everyone asks me: “If you don’t like babies, how come you have us?”

I usually answer in two ways: “You didn’t stay babies long, did you?” and “It’s other people’s babies I don’t like.”

I said both to T1 and T2 but for the first time I talked about my other reasons. “I don’t like things I cannot control. Babies have so many unknown factors. Top that with different parenting types and I really just don’t like them. I was very nervous and anxious the first few weeks with both of you. I’m thankful Dad was home to help us get into a routine. I don’t know what kind of Grandma I’ll be–but as long as you do it my way, we’ll be fine!”

I went on to explain getting the dogs has been stressful. One good thing about retired greyhounds is that they’re relatively easy as long as you learn and establish a schedule. DH chimed in, pointing out that it is important for us to be in charge and not the other way around. “Dogs and children are the same in that way.”

I gave more examples: I don’t like troops that let their scouts run all over the place–you can tell the scouts do not respect their leaders; and I pointed out that the best teachers the girls have had (and T2 has had 95% the same ones) were the ones that had order and control of the class.

I explained it was my personality type, rather than explaining it is a PTSD thing. I also said it didn’t mean I wasn’t good with babies. In fact, I’m very good at soothing babies. I pointed out that my fly by the seat of their pants coleaders appreciate and value that I am an excellent planner–and yet in a chaotic crisis they cannot handle the situation and I’m called on to lead.

T1 has a similar personality type. Having a child that thrives on order and routine as much as I do actually makes her more predictable. T2 is a little more easy-going and flexible and yet she needs the routine more for discipline rather than comfort.

Change is hard for me. But I push myself because I don’t want to stagnate. I don’t want my fear to be a limitation that defines me in the eyes of my children. At the same time I’m not going to open up a daycare just to prove to myself or them that I can. “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” (Albert Einstein)

I’m really not a big fan of banging my head against a wall if I don’t have to. I’ll rise to the occasion when I’m a grandparent and perhaps the “child of my child” will give me more warm fuzzies than my nephews. For them, I will make an exception.

For the rest of you… babies are cute, just keep them at a distance. Small yappy dogs that cannot be trained are just that: small yappy dogs. I’ll take my greyhounds, even with their puppy chewing at the moment over your small yappy dogs any day of the week. I may be a strict scout leader but I know these girls will appreciate and thank me for it one day… and they’re still having fun!

So, my dear sweet newborn nephew, welcome to the world. I do love you and I will spoil you mercilessly, just like your brother. Just come talk to me when you’re a little older and more reasonable. Love, Auntie

Hmmm… for a different POV check out Mama Kat’s vlog My Husband is no spring chicken.

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Happy Anniversary Ramblings….

January 7, 2012

DH and I celebrated 16 years yesterday. We actually started dating 2 and half years before that (8/93) but in these 16 years as husband and wife we’ve probably only lived together 8 of those. It is the life!

So where were you 16 years ago? Were you hunkered down or thankful you weren’t anywhere near the East Coast?

From Jim Duncan NBC 12 Weather Facebook post

It was a good anniversary. I can’t really explain how much at peace I am right now. Am I still anxious and insecure? You bet. Otherwise I would tell more people about this blog. But I am letting more things roll off me or just letting go of things. Some of it is growing up. Some of it is being struck by bricks from God. I’ll have to post about this soon.

Still recovering from my tooth extraction, DH and I just opted for a movie date during school hours. We even (unintentionally) left our cell phones at home and lived on the edge for a few hours. Then in the evening though I had initially said we’d take the girls with us, we went out to the Pub. T1 is trying to pay us back the $15 she owes us and to earn more money for her new mall going activities. She can earn money for watch T2 for us. So DH and I had a quiet evening by ourselves before the evening rush and stopped at a craft store for some odds and ends.

Today I am in the process of undecorating from Christmas. Normally I would leave up my vast snowman collection but with the adoption of two greyhounds taking place next Saturday it is probably best just to get it all down.

DH and I also finally got plate hangers and some picture frames for some pieces that have got to be hung up. I’m tired of seeing them leaning up against the wall. The plate hangers are for the 2002 plates my MIL finally located to complete my collection of plates–we have one for each year DH, T1, and I were born in, as well as 1996. But we never found 2002 for T2. Yeah, finally complete! One of the picture frames if for the 20×30 art print I created out of the photos from our 2010 family photo shoot for our 15th anniversary. Nothing like waiting a whole year to put it up. (In my defense, I may have been waiting because each of the pictures in the print has Cassie in it.)

I’m wanting to hang things… and to take things down. My tastes have changed from my newlywed days and even from the days when we moved into this house 8 and half years ago. The wreaths and bouquets from my wedding just don’t fit any more. I want a little more polished look. We had a painting that while was pretty and went with the nautical feel of our living room has no sentimental value because I cannot remember who gave it to us. DH has come home with more prints with his ships on them and an “owner’s plank” plaque that need to go up… so the one must go to make more room.

I’m even looking at the decorations and wondering want can go, what should stay. Wow. DH is going to be so proud of me.

I just feel like I’m changing and evolving this year. And I can’t imagine doing it without the most amazing husband standing beside me and two amazing children giving me joy and inspiration.

Here’s to many more years, DH. You are with me even when we are apart. Thank you.

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