I've gotten a lot of parenting advice over the years. It's hard not to get parenting advice. In fact, all you need to get buckets of parenting advice is a child standing within 12 feet of you. Or upwind. It's a pretty even mix of good advice, great advice, outdated advice, and advice from people who have only ever read books about parenting. There is one piece of advice that I always took to heart. That was to keep a journal of all the crazy crap that my kids do. It was always followed with the emphatic phrases "because you forget!" or "I wish I had written those things down".
This never really panned out for me. I'm just not a journal writing person. I've bought a dozen beautifully bound journals over the years but never really gotten past page two. It's just not my nature. I let the idea go by the wayside but it occurred to me that maybe there was another way to work it out.
This weekend I set up a very professional gmail account for both kids. I'm gambling on the fact that gmail will be around for the next 15 years. This email will be great for them to use on resumes and when giving their email address to other professionals (I hope).
I thought how funny it would be if I sent them an email. That's when it occurred to me that it wouldn't be funny, it would be awesome! This is how I could solve my journal problem. I can't get together to write in a paper journal but I write emails all the time. It would only take a few seconds to send an email, heck I could even attach pictures. Then someday, when they are old enough I'll hand over the reigns to the email account and all that it contains. I figure even if I can write something once a month it will still be a wonderful keepsake.
I'm certainly not at a loss for crazy stories that need to be remembered for posterity. A few of them have made their way onto this blog. Alice is racking up her fair share as well. Are you bad at parent journaling? Try this out!
As I crutched my way across the porch on my way to school a flash of green caught my eye. There in my lettuce box was a single solitary lettuce, reseeded, trying to make a go of it. It should have made me a little sad but instead it really lifted my spirits. Sure, my garden was a bust this year. But spring will come again. I'll be on two feet again. I will have the chance to do it over. There's not a lot of things in life that forgiving.
So I'm going to give myself a pass on this summer. I'm going to go out and assess the damage and prepare the soil for next spring once my foot is better. This fall i'm going to concentrate on my show and doing some heavy duty baking and freezing. My friend gave me a ton of frozen pears and apples and I'm planning a trip to the orchard. Plus there's stews to make, chickens to roast, soups, pies, and cookies.
Sometimes you need to just cut your losses. It doesn't work if you don't also give yourself permission to move on from the situation.
Well I'm officially half way through the 3 weeks of being a uniped. I admit I was having a rough time of it yesterday. Too little sleep, a precocious 4 year old, the weight of 1000 impending deadlines (did I mention that my play opens at the end of the month?), lost car keys (preventing me from going and getting coffee) and a broken internet connection and i had just about had it. Thankfully I have a marvelously intuitive spouse. He packed me up and practically shoved me out the door.
I am a workaholic. I admit it. I'm also very independent. It's hard to try to negotiate with myself about what I should and shouldn't be doing when there is so much to do and, after all, the injured party is my foot, it's not my heart or other vital organs. It's like 5% of the total package so there's no reason why I shouldn't be able to forge ahead in spite of the problem, right? But see, that's exactly the problem. Running fourteen hour days at breakneck speed is about as much as I can handle fully functioning. Add to that the wheelchair, the crutches, and the endless propping of my leg up on something and I start to wear thin. Which, I guess is how I ended up at Panera yesterday morning [caramel latte, blueberry scone, cinnamon crunch bagel], foot propped up as is required.
In the end it all comes down to asking for help, which I don't like to do. And if I was a happy sunshine person I'd probably stick a paragraph in here about how, during this ordeal I learned how to let myself accept help and not feel bad about it but that is totally untrue. Don't get me wrong, I've had help from people in such a gracious, kind, generous way that it makes me feel incredibly greatful and profoundly moved when I think of it. But, in the end, that doesn't change how I feel about it. I can't stand being pushed in the wheelchair. I can't stand asking for people to bring me things. I'm not going to be happy until i'm out of that wheelchair and can at least stand and walk by myself. 11 days people, 11 days.
Friday I stopped by the podiatrist to get my handicapped parking permit paperwork (say that three times fast) and to have them adjust the top portion of the cast that was rubbing a little too tight for my liking. Because I wasn't sure what the adjustment would entail I made everyone hold off on decorating the cast until I had been to have it adjusted.
In the end, they just sliced the back open a little at the top so we were good to go. First order if business was already decided. We had created a stencil as the artwork for our upcoming production. I took an hour and made a smaller version of the stencil and we prepped it for spraying.
I think it turned out rather well. Tonight i'll bring along my box of sharpies and set the cast to it. I know a lot of people want to add something to it, just them first. The play is taking up all my energy, I just think it seems comical that I will be carrying around a physical reminder of that everywhere I go.
Last night I started back to rehearsal and taught class this afternoon. I'm confined to a wheelchair for the next three weeks and it has totally changed my outlook. Literally. My normal field of vision is about 3 feet higher than my current one.
I am allowed to use the crutches sparingly but the weight of the cast has given me major hip pain so I have to keep it to a minimum. It's not hard to do, the building I work in is rather sprawling and I wouldn't have made it very far on crutches. Something about the stomp, clomp, stomp, clomp is exhausting. Between the strain on the shoulders, one leg working and balancing for two (yes, just balancing can be tiring), and the other leg holding up the cast of kryptonite, it's almost a relief to sit down and wheel around for awhile.
It's a smooth, gliding kind of movement, that has it's own kind of pleasure in it. Maybe it's just the relief of being mobile without so much physical effort. The only thing I might complain about is the fact that my broken foot must be elevated and out in front of me like some poor deformed white figurehead, wrapped in study packaging but too delicate to bang doors open with.
This is only for three weeks. I am going to face it like the adventure it is. I have no choice but to be here. I can't do anything to change it. So I embrace it.
Come back tomorrow, I have a lot to tell you about the beginning of the decoration on the cast. It turned out great!