Sunday, April 29, 2012

May...May....May....

May is coming, and coming fast. I know it doesn't come more quickly than any other month, it just seems to me that time is flying past me at warp speed. Soon it will be June. School will be out.

Tick Tock. Tick Tock.

Debido a la ultima post, que fue tan triste, cambiare' este post. No es que siento mas feliz, sino que se q' todo el mundo no quiere escuchar de mis tribulaciones. Hay bastantes, pero, pues.....hoy no.

Here's an encapsulated-Readers-Digest-Version of why we were in Eastern Washington yesterday. Two days previously, Lance and I had attempted some 'Time Alone'. Apparently 'Time Alone' means we get where we're going( Leavenworth), a pretty little Bavarian-esqu village over Steven's Pass, and our 'Time Alone' gets diverted into 'Whaddya-MEAN-BY-TRYING-TO-HAVE-ALONE-TIME?'. As we arrived, our suburban started sounding like a jet engine with a few bad parts. Plus, there was no oil pressure. 8 hours, $250 and one sister-driving-over-the-mountains-to-rescue-us-and-bring-us-home later, we were without our black beauty.

Black beauty was towed to another town, as apparently Leavenworth does not have heavy duty vehicle repair places to, you know, repair suburbans that sound like jet engines and have no discernible oil pressure.

The good news/weird news is, that the guy that 'fixed' it, didn't DO anything TO it. Meaning, he couldn't find anything wrong with it. It drove just dandy. Thankfully, he also didn't charge us anything for looking. I wanted to kiss that man. No, I didn't.

So, yesterday Lance and I took the Kia and drove back up to Leavenworth, past Leavenworth into the small suburb of Wenatchee called Cashmere. Doesn't that sound all soft and squishy? Cccaaassssshhhhhmere. Something you'd want to hold close to you. This place, um, not so much. Dry, and industrial-ish, but I still would have kissed that mechanic for not charging us a dime. He said that we'd had a bad enough time and he didn't want to add to it. There are nice people in this world. :)

On the way home, it was dark and rainy and the two lane road driving was difficult for my old eyes. As I've aged, night driving in the dark on a two lane road is not an optimal activity for me unless I want to meet my Maker and take others with me. Thankfully, we made it down the mountain and home. My eyes leaked the entire way..and Ashley held my hand and rubbed my arm and expressed her love to me. It wasn't so much the scary driving....as it was the pain in my heart over things I choose not to go into on this blog. My heart aches...and it causes my eyes to leak uncontrollably at times. I've sought comfort in blessings conversation and ....silence. I've had peace descend upon me at times...and at other times I feel as though I am being torn in half.

But I was not going to talk about that right now. I was going to count my blessings---and the greatest one I have is my wonderful husband. Loving, kind, forgiving, GIVING and sweet. I do not deserve him, but I am hourly grateful for him. Without him and the knowledge that we are sealed, I would not be able to withstand the tsunami of trials and tribulations that sweep me off my feet on a regular basis. I am blessed to have this man by my side.

He saves me daily.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Easter and the Beach and Honesty and Pain

I don't want to talk about Easter....or the Beach, although the beach cabin was soothing to my soul. I want to talk about honesty and about pain.

I saw a friend, an acquaintance really, at the grocery store this morning. I'd stopped there after I'd rushed to the high school to deliver some pain meds to my girl. I called her name and said hi, she smiled and said hi. "How are you?", she said. "Fine", said I.

I'm so far from fine I don't think I could find it in the dictionary if I tried. Why do we smile and say we're good when we are the furthest thing from it? Why do we lie? For lie it is---most often we aren't fine, we're not good or even fair. We're distressed and depressed and stressed and in heart wrenching agony, but we dress up our faces with false smiles and we present them to the world and we....lie.

Perhaps because we've been told to stand up straight and smile so often by our elders. "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all" and "Fake it til you make it".

I'm not great at faking things.



This is mostly how I feel right now---I was better at the beach. I was calm. I was alone for a bit and was able to gather myself together in the silence and center myself a bit. Now I've been thrust back the chaos and the questions and the pain. So many things I do not understand. So many times I cry out why and pray to have this challenge, this whatever-it-is test, taken from me. I don't want it. PLEASE JUST MAKE IT STOP.

So, yes. I'm fine. I'm great. How are YOU?

Monday, April 02, 2012

Teenage Mutant Drivers

This was first published in 2004, but since I'm going through it again, I thought it appropriate to post again. And why, you may ask? It's because I have NEW Mutant Teenage Driver.

Teenage Mutant Drivers
5.February.2004

I am a horrible driver. I’ve been doing it wrong for years and I had no idea. Although I have caused no accidents, nor participated in any collisions requiring bodywork or insurance agents, I am still Driving Impaired. The fact that I’ve never had a ticket doesn’t mean that I know what I’m doing either. How could I have gone for years and years thinking—nay believing that I was a safe and conscientious driver, you might ask? The answer is clear. I never had a teenager in my car with a Drivers Permit in her purse. Not only does she hold a legal document, entitling her to get behind the wheel of a car whilst one of her adult progenitors white-knuckles the dashboard, it appears that her license is also gives her…er, license to tell me every move I make is the wrong one.

“MOM, GO!” she hollered at me the other day.

I hit the gas and chirped the tires due to the adrenaline rush she’d just given me. I haven’t burned rubber since I was in high school, and I haven’t had anyone yell at my driving since my mother was teaching me to drive when I was a teenager. She scared me.

“Why did you yell at me?” I said, clutching my chest, through which I was sure my middle-aged heart was about to burst.

“The light turned GREEN Mom” Oh, well then. I guess she would have been negligent in her duties had she not yelled at me a nanosecond after the light had changed. I thanked her profusely for sparing me the embarrassment of sitting at a green light for half a second. I am obviously inept in recognizing when the light changes.

“HEY! You’re NOT supposed to do THAT!” she sneered with arms folded across her teenage chest as I made a right turn and went directly into the inside lane instead of going to the outside lane and then signaling. “Our Drivers Ed teacher told us that our parents have a bad habit of doing that and we should tell you that you’re doing it all wrong.” Note to self: Be sure to thank that Drivers Ed teacher in an appropriate manner. This should involve shaving cream and his car. Another experience I haven’t had since I was in high school.

I am not normally a yeller. I do my very best not to raise my voice at my children, because I know how I felt when I was yelled at as a child. Since the advent of my Teenage Mutant Driver, I have been known to raise my voice on numerous occasions. I make no apologies for this occurrence because it serves to save my life.

“STOP STOP STOP STOP!” This is me yelling at my Teenage Mutant Driver as she pulls out into oncoming traffic that is heading straight for me on the passenger side of the vehicle. So she does. Stop, I mean. Right in the middle of the intersection, forcing the driver coming at me to slam on his/her brakes.

“Back up! Back up!” I loudly instruct her, as the oncoming vehicle slides towards us. Obviously I frightened her, because she slammed it into reverse and chirped the tires. In all my years of driving, I doubt I have ever managed to burn rubber in reverse. Score one point for the offspring in the Surpassing Parental Expectations category.

“Did you LOOK before you backed up?” I asked, again alta voz. I knew the answer to this question, but I had obviously succumbed to the same disease my parents suffered and was now asking questions that needed no answers.

Later, after I was able to get my pulse down into the Not Having A Heart Attack Range, I asked her if she knew what she had done wrong. Her answer surprised me.

“I had the right of way! I got to the stop sign first!” She had a point. She had reached the stop sign first. I patiently explained to her that while yes, she had reached the stop sign before the driver on the other side of the intersection, the traffic to the right and left of us did not have to stop and didn’t care who reached the stop sign first.

Teenage Mutant Drivers are not known for taking criticism well, or believing that their parental units know more than they do on any given subject, including driving. Thus, I continue to face abuse.

Sometimes I am weak and believe what people say to me about me. In order to combat this somewhat fragile aspect of my personality, I now stand in front of my bathroom mirror every morning and repeat the following mantra: I AM A GOOD DRIVER. I AM A SAFE DRIVER. I AM NOT INSANE. DEATH TO ALL DRIVERS ED TEACHERS.