you are having some hard days and stress.
you are in need of some perspective.
you are doing so good keeping up on deadlines.
you are spending plenty of quality time with cate.
you are keeping the house and clothes clean!
you are taking time for yoga and the pool.
you are studying the scriptures before textbooks.
you are doing stuff like oil changes and washing cars!
you are getting high marks on papers.
you are sleeping well and panic is low.
you are sure you are on the right path for you.
you are right to put off blogging and etsy.
you are getting dinner on the table most nights.
you are going on dates with grant every weekend.
you are getting more than 100 lines on tetris always.
you are doing just fine.
you are okay to ease up on yourself a bit.
fr 5/18- cate and i both puked everywhere. grant stayed home from work to take care of us. i was either asleep or throwing up all day. i ate a few crackers and drank some gatorade. had no idea where cate was, but grant was on it. i heard the washer and dryer going a lot. i remembered what it feels like to be pregnant and in a sweaty room spinning moment of misery thanked heavenly father for infertility.
sa 5/19- cate missed her last soccer game and we both slept the last of the yuckies off. grant went grocery shopping, ran several other errands, cleaned the house, answered our every craving, and in general was superman. he also went to work at the church welfare farm as a service project, helped a neighbor lay sod as a service project, and stopped and changed a tire for two ladies who didn't speak english and were panicking (as a service project). he's like, i don't even know. amazing.
su 5/20- made it through the first hour of church, felt weak and cate and i headed back to bed. in horror i realized that paper i was planning on working on for three days was due by 10 pm that night, even though i don't do homework on the sabbath. emergencies happen, though, and with the clock ticking i researched and wrote for nine hours without a break. it was worse than the sweaty puking. after i turned it in i had a ton of reading and work to do for my classes the next day. stayed up till the wee wee hours.
mo 5/21- early morning i got cate up and off to school, and then barely made it through my own school. prayed constantly for the holy ghost to guide my comments through my classes, as usual, because said classes are intense round tables on subjects where a mormon's views are not desired. as usual, the holy ghost came through and i felt what to say and what not to say. even better, i felt respect being earned, slowly but surely. family home evening that night was going out to dinner which induced guilt. (i am a firm believer that that is not family home evening. a discussion and spiritual evening at home is. fun should be involved, of course. just my opinion). more late night homework.
tu 5/22- prayed-through class again. then pet day at cate's school. coco and i brought dottie the dog and then ate a crapload of del taco while we watched kristin wiig's last snl on the dvr. cried through ruby tuesday at the end (did you? i keep hearing that song in my head and getting sad again). after coco left, cate and i talked and shared some funny jokes, had a good mom moment. then i sat down on my bed. it was 4:30. i don't know what happened but the next thing i knew it was 7:30 and i was awoken by cate making copies of a circus program she had created with puppets. i panicked that she had missed activity days at church and had no dinner made for her (grant had to work late making up for friday). she told me no biggie, and she had made her own dinner. i hid and cried in sadness that i'm going to have to lower my bar...like...a lot.
tu 5/22 middle of the night- i felt better when grant talked in his sleep; that always cheers me up cause it's hi-larious. his big six foot self stood up on the bed and was pressing buttons on the wall. i said, "whatcha doing babe?" (i hate to wake him up, i love to see how it plays out). he said in a frustrated tone, "shhh! i am fixing the main navigation shelf!" i tried not to laugh as i asked, "are you still at work doing GIS or are you working on the millennium falcon?" which woke him up and he sheepishly laughed, laid down, and fell back asleep. it was awesome.
we 5/23- had a good, long prayer. everything is good. great even. bars get lowered sometimes, it's humbling, that's ok. we keep going. i keep telling myself what a difference a year will make! that makes me feel really good, how fast time goes. i am going to make a chain for all the weeks i have left of school (58) that's not so daunting, is it?! (we won't discuss the thousands of hours of counseling i have to do after, before i can be licensed). coco stopped by and we were both dressed like die hard guns n roses fans without planning. we are die hard guns n roses fans but it made us laugh a lot. we laughed for a few hours about lots and lots of things and it renewed my spirit. then, i got information about my social work field placement and i am very pleased. i will be working in one of the arenas i am most passionate about: substance abuse rehabilitation. it will be hard because it is court ordered and low budget: women trying to just jump through the hoops so they can get their kids out of foster care (as opposed to seeking help by choice). but a few women do decide sobriety is actually important in the long run. i will be very happy to help facilitate that decision for anyone in any way i can.
right now- life has a lot of meaning, growth opportunities, and no extra time to be depressed. grant is my hero and cate is my constant source of smiles. i am very, very grateful.
my niece needed some senior portraits, so coco and i set to work. coco did her make-up and hair, we blasted some music to get in the mood while driving to utah lake, flirted our way into the state park for free (nine bucks?!) and then i started clicking the camera while coco yelled art direction behind me. we gave ourselves 20 minutes. result: 200 gorgeous images of this gorgeous girl. TWO IMPORTANT THINGS:
1. coco is back in town and taking appointments for hair cuts, colors, brazilian blow outs, lash extensions, eyebrows, etc. she is still working from her home right now, so she can schedule any day/ time that works for you. just email her: nicolereneer[at]hotmail[dot]com.
2. maddy, i love you. you are gorgeous and unique and creative in ways i've never dreamed of. i can't wait to see who you become as a woman, because you're already the coolest teenager i know. you are firmly holding the iron rod while rocking life and i love it. i'm so happy for you. you've already checked off one of the hardest tasks for a girl in the world today: knowing and being true to who you are. the world is your oyster!
the six kids in my family are ordered boy-girl-girl and then another set of boy-girl-girl. this is the second set. kenny, or neenee as we called him, then me on the left, then baby coco. side note: nicole, your obsession with high heels began in babyhood; every picture i have you're either wearing or holding some.
anyway, today i am looking at this picture and longing to re-live this moment in 1984. adulthood is so busy and stressful. just for a bit i'd like to be plopped on a couch making faces with nowhere to go and nothing to do. childhood is so short and precious. then reality sets in and it's never the same. i suppose grant's intense work schedule and my intense school schedule is making me wax nostalgic and wish for simpler days...
the good news is, i can give them to cate. i don't ask a lot of her, i just expect her to follow my lead and enjoy her life and littleness. i like to bring her breakfast each morning. i like to scratch her back at night while she's falling asleep. i really believe in letting the stress of life be put on hold for as long as possible. grant and i were just talking about how much we don't believe in getting frustrated or angry over accidents, spills, and other age appropriate mishaps. oh boy, who cares?!
i am confident that when the time comes to be an adult, she will work hard, keep a clean house, be anxiously engaged in good things, and will always be learning, because that's all she's ever seen. i have faith she'll follow our example and remember our teachings because our home was a safe and happy place for her to grow up.
marjorie hinckley is my idol mom. the book glimpses is a favorite. in it is an anecdote i'll never forget that pops into my head and guides my mothering decisions often. she writes: "one day our oldest boy turned up missing. there were lawns to be mowed, irrigation ditches to be cleaned. the hours ticked away. all afternoon i practiced a speech i would give him when he showed up." well, he showed up to say he'd just been doin' nothing, relaxing at the hollow all day. and marjorie, for some reason, chose not to bust him.
years later he came home during finals week in his senior year in college. he was really stressed, trying to do well enough to get into graduate school, and also things weren't going well with his girlfriend. he took a break to come talk to his mom. he said to her nostalgically: "i had a wonderful childhood...those long summer days, when you could lie on your back in the hollow and listen to the birds sing and watch the ants build their castles."
marjorie reflected as an older mother how glad she was she didn't scold him that day. she was grateful that, "the memory of the peace of a summer day sustained him when the pressures of adult life began to crowd in...there are so few empty summer days. it has never been so important that children have a home that is a place of refuge, a place of peace. i tried hard never to say 'no' to my children if i could possibly say 'yes' and i think it worked well because it gave my children the feeling that i trusted them and they were responsible to do the best they could."
i want to be just like that.
eta: sorry for those who want that book, i linked to the wrong thing above, but i like those quotes so i didn't change it! here is the book on amazon. if you live in utah you can probably find it at a thrift store, although it looks like amazon might be cheaper, ha!
and i've been on a roller coaster of emotions, but i'm settling down now. i am loving the windows wide open, curtains blowing, with no heater or air conditioner employed. even though what i should've done today was study- instead i cleaned the house, grocery shopped, and read on my deliciously cozy bed with the fan blowing on me. i just needed one more old day. just one.