** Finding the balance has been a real struggle of late. This has been in my drafts for 10 days…**
I’m writing from the floor in the hallway of the college gym. Meghan’s swim team practices below. For hours. One day I will be able to drop her off and get a few things done. But, not yet. Not now.
I sit in the hall, out of view of my girl underneath. Out of view of her coaches who undoubtedly must think me paranoid. There isn’t another parent here. These are the big kids- 8th through 12th grade. And I’m not here because I don’t trust her. Quite the opposite. I sit here for the unpredictable. For the moments that take us from 0 to 180 in the blink of an eye. And even as I recognize that emergencies happen to anyone. At any time. I am here. Because history, track record, can not be erased or forgotten. I will pull away, slowly.
In the mean time I FINALLY got all my classes together, up and running, and pretty organized. Formative assessment is in place. Lessons are polished up, and I can take the 50 minutes each week that I see the 575 or so chilren as seriously as I like to.
Which is timely because it fell right into High School application season. Yes, season. 30 years ago this was not even a process. Now it’s an ordeal. These are tests to take for every type of school one is interested in. There are then scholarship tests to try to pay for the non- public ones. Open houses, “shadowing” appointments, where she goes to the school for the day to “see.”
This all seems to culminate by some time in December and then be followed by 2 months of waiting. It’s amazing how much “hurry up and wait” there really is.
And I am left to sit here. Quietly. I will her body to do as she wants. I that the right high school for her, is the one she attends. And, I watch as 8th grade starts to pass by.
Your experiences shape you. Your disease doesn’t define you. But, in our case it provides, stamina, endurance. tenacity, grit, and a tendency to want to over-achieve. Not a terrible list of negatives.
“Normal” is a relative term, constantly changing. When we are on the brink of better health, we sometimes find ourselves guilty of waiting for the other shoe to drop. We are often guarded and on the defensive. It’s hard not to be.
This past month a former student buried his mother and father 2 weeks apart. He is Meghan’s age, and while he had step-siblings, he was the only child of his parents. I haven’t had him out of my mind much.
These warnings, these screenings, these appointments, these surgeries, at times leave me down. But, not for long. We’ve been ordered to be vigilant.
There are no promises.
Today bleeds into tomorrow. September just about swallowed up October. And October seems hungry for November.
Stop. Or at least pause. Enjoy the process, no matter how tedious or taunting it may seem.
Hug your family. Call your friends. Even if it’s only for 5 minutes. Send a text. Stay in touch.
And I, I will be working on taking my own advice!