Saturday, August 20, 2011

The year of intensity.

My Father-in-law asked me why I haven't blogged in so long. I had to think about that for a while. First of all, this has been the most intense year of my life. It took all my precious life force just to live it; nothing was left for documenting it. Second, crazy things have happened- things I didn't want to blog about because people would judge me and take away my mom card. Third, I've had amazing support during this year, and my need to tell my story has been satisfied that way.

I've had enough distance to mention some of my fun facts:
1. During my spring break, my sons rose up as one and created havoc at school. It wasn't a time of great stress at school, and the timing still mystifies me, but every child but one either got suspended, withdrawn from school, or had to call home from the Principal's office. Thankfully, most were for general tomfoolery and rascality, but still. I had to laugh.
2. I also came thisclose to having a SWAT team search my house and having a child expelled for what ended up not being a good way to impress an elementary school girl. I didn't laugh at that one. I did some deep cleansing breaths for a long, long time. It's almost funny, but it'll take a while.
3. The same week my kiddos were in revolt, my grades came out for winter quarter. I got to experience the darker side of dyslexia when my biology professor inadvertently gave my hard-won 4.0 to the student below me and gave me his 0.0. I missed making the Dean's list and scholarship consideration because of it. I was an overwrought ghost, haunting the registrar's and professor's office for ten days to no avail. I finally got sick of it and parked myself in the Dean's office and poof! Fixed in a flash. The happily ever after to this one is that I did end up getting a different scholarship, so there.
I lived through all that, but dang. They all pretty much happened simultaneously. That was one tough month.
When my brother died last year, it reoriented the gravitational pull of my life. Every day has been a push/pull experience toward fully processing those moments that were too intense to live at the time, and adjusting to the loss. Again, I'm really grateful for the support I have. Lewis has been a rock, and is always willing to pick up the slack when the work of grieving is more intense. The cool thing is, I have the best brother in the world. He is still very involved in the family so my relationship with him, instead of shrinking into the distant past, has stayed blessedly current. I know it probably can't stay like this forever, but it's enough for now.
I have also been consumed with all the 'firsts' of our little farm. We've raised and butchered chickens, learned how to/how not to keep baby chicks alive, and fended off a multitude of predators. We've felt a baby goat kicking inside his mommy, then enfolded him in a towel still wet from birth. I've gotten over the awkwardness of squeezing my goats girly goodies to milk her, and even made goat cheese.
We watched a youtube video on goat slaughter, then did it ourselves. I helped skin and butcher the demonic creature. I canned the meat, and even made sausage. I loved it so much, I'm taking hunter's safety next month with my three oldest boys.
We were given a boat this summer (!!!) and have spent fun days tubing, skiing, and fishing.
We worked for months getting the four, eighty-by-3.5 foot garden boxes fences, filled, and planted. Now we're drowning is zucchini. It's a lovely way to go!
We road-tripped with some of our closest friends and got to bask in the sight of Bono in leather pants. Unforgettable.
I got to be in a family band and rock out to Weezer for the reunion talent show. I don't ever want to see the video, I know it would spoil my memory of Julie's and my sweet harmony- especially the part where we totally lost our place and just yelled the words.
I'll wrap up this post with the present moment. I spent the last few days hanging out with my dad, doing my best not to lose or break him while my mom's away. We've had a great time, hitting a bucket of balls, hitting our friend's frozen yogurt place, and devouring pizza, root beer, and action movies. Sorry mom, he just had cold pizza and root beer for breakfast!


Michelle Stott said...

Thanks for updating! You are an amazing women and I am sorry for all the struggles you have had to go through.

HIB said...

Fun times, huh? It's nice to see you blog again.

We had a pretty intense year ourselves. No visits from the SWAT team though and the ATF hasn't been here in a couple of years, but we did do the call home from the principals office for what amounted to "tomfoolery and rascality." The oldest boy worked his way out of that with virtually no punishment at school or home. I still don't know how that happened!

We should get all our boys together so they can plot the overthrow of the world or something. It sounds like your boys are as much fun as mine! :)

fivekidsandsomechocolate said...

.....some of our closest friends???

Wow. I am so happy for you that this passed year is over. It sounds even crazier and stressful in writing.