Thursday, April 14, 2011

ages & stages

The kids
Mr. Cynic is currently approaching his 16th birthday and is away on a trip with his high school competitive choir. I let him pack himself, and only asked a few did you remember type questions. There was a slight problem with a cufflink and studs order not arriving in time and Honey and I scrambling to get a second set the night before the bus pulled out of the parking lot at 6:30am yesterday. Of course a few hours after he was on the road, the online ordered set arrived, so now we own two. Men's formal wear is now covered well in our house, who would ever have imagined that?

Captain Comic is approximately twelve and a half (August he'll be thirteen, lord help me).  He takes a SPED bus to his middle school, and the policy in place until yesterday was that he got off the bus before the rest of the students disembarked from their busses because of his sensory integration issues with crowds. I received an email yesterday that he has been wandering the halls in the mornings and scaring teachers by jumping out from behind corners and doors. In effect, revisiting the topic of either keeping him on the bus until he is released with the rest of the students, or assigning a paraprofessional aide to him during that time period of the morning. I have been talking about his need for a para because of his wandering since Day One at this school last September. I have to say my first reaction was to giggle when I got the email, because I can just picture him and his delighted shifty grin as he jumps out and exclaims, "Waa!" at a select teacher.  He does it often at home.

Toots turned three two weeks ago today, had a princess party and promptly became a rather bratty one after that, with potty training regression included.  This morning's tantrum was of great magnitude. She observes Captain Comic's less desirable behaviors and parrots them. I told her and Honey that we will be having consistent use of time outs to rectify this, and we all need to be on board with it. Her behavior lately has really been unacceptable.

However, she does still have ample cute moments such as when we sat down to dinner last night:

Toots: Where's my bruver [Mr. Cynic]?
Mom: He's in South Carolina for his Choral Competition.
Toots: Well, go pick him up!

After writing off writing last week during the kids' spring break, I decided it's now or never, and conferred with Grandma to take Toots off my hands so I can get out of the house to write everyday this week for a few hours, while Captain Comic is in school, and Grandma is on board. Monday, I futz around the house while telling myself I would write all morning. I had it all laid out, and couldn't get a grip at all from where I had left off when I last visited my manuscript. I am in the middle of the manuscript in a complete overhaul and found it very hard to work on a chapter that still felt like the prior drafts, when I needed to clearly move forward. I think most of my problem on Monday was that I just had not looked at it in well over a week.

Tuesday, I was excited, having looked at it the day before, to take the manuscript with me out of the house and to my writing group. I wrestled with the chapter, doubted every edit I'd done in this draft and questioned all the work I've done on the book in the past six months, which has been a lot of changes. I kvetched after a couple of hours, and sat back down in front of it and finally saw a way out of the problem I was wrestling with. Then the other writers in my group all started having similar issues with focus and what to do next and decided to break for lunch, right when I found the groove I needed.  It's okay, it happens. I knew I would work on it again the next day at the library.

Yesterday, at the library, I attempted to continue where I left off the day before. It was like typing through drying concrete. The further I went, the slower it got. It was painful to watch myself go through that, because I know what I need to do. I'm just stuck in this middle of the book chapter and know what comes after is pretty well put together; I just need to get through this for the rest to make sense and flow well again.

So here I sit, writing this instead, so that I can process my way out of the concrete, while eating a late breakfast, because Toots was such a pill this morning before preschool, I couldn't get my own stuff together for after her preschool drop off.  But as soon as I finish, I am packing this dang laptop up and heading to my windowed corner of the library to sit with my muse, if she will visit today. I think she will.

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