Julia finished two days. She has come home happy both days. I’ve gotten no frantic phone calls, emails or texts from anyone at school. She lost her binder on the first day (found yesterday) and her new to her jacket on the second (she will look for it today). There is a strict phone rule in her physics class—if the phone comes out in class, you lose it. First time, until the end of class, second time, it goes to the house office with unknown consequences. Good black line rule for Julia, nice that it is for everyone. I’ve driven her to school these two days and I will do so tomorrow as well. Buses are messed up (Did I bring that challenge with me?). Interestingly, the bus dilemma is not confined to sped buses and there was a general email from the principal about it yesterday. He admitted that the primary reason for the problem is not enough planning and he has an idea about what to do for next year. For the present, more parents are driving kids to school. Just like West, Newton North sits in the middle of a suburban neighborhood and as such does not have the roads to support school drop off traffic. Our 6 minute drive takes 20 and getting out of melee takes more. The buses will help. I think Julia appreciates our time in the car. High anxiety yesterday, a slightly lower level this morning. Continue reading
Labor Day Weekend and we were out and about playing tourists for the last few days before school. There is a good deal of anxiety but keeping busy helps. Besides touring, we hang Julia’s anime posters and did some decorating in her bedroom. Fingers crossed for Tuesday morning.
A visit to Old Sturbridge Village about 45 minutes south of us. We happened to arrive on Free Friday which made the visit all the more sweet. Visiting 1830 and talking to various craftsmen was the highlight of the day. It was a simpler time of live but even a casual visit showed how few opportunities for women there were. The Seneca Falls Convention was still 18 years away. Continue reading
Tuesday: First day of Julia’s Junior year at Newton North High School. Today has been a bit more than a year in the making. The first queries I wrote to Boston area high schools, when I was still just toying with the idea of moving, were dated mid-August 2018. So, today feels like crossing a finish line and at the same time, it is the beginning of another big adventure.
I drove Julia to school this morning and her case manager met her at the door. Julia went in at 11, an hour before upper class students were due to arrive and two hours after the freshman class started. The Sped administrator, who has been our life line since we arrived, suggested the time and it gave Julia a chance to have lunch and settle in before the school filled up. Continue reading
Sitting in a coffee shop whose name I’ve already forgotten. There is no free wifi here which suggests that I will try the Starbucks around the corner next time. My car is parked at a metered space that I probably don’t have enough time on. I can’t always tell if there is a time limit on parking spaces. Julia is at an orientation for new students. She is anxious and scattered and so am I.
New reality: Carry change for meters. Find a coffee shop with free wifi. Get acquainted with feeling scattered. Continue reading
Findings and observations, many without conclusions:
-I am making home and I prefer that I was done already. Hanging pictures in the most compulsive manner. Damn theses plaster, horse hair and lathe walls! Small pictures need are hung velcro-y like strips. Not buying them from Amazon but a “local” hardware store 25 minutes away. Twenty five minutes is not too far to go for helpful advice. On Sunday, I hung a large poster from a molding hook using fishing line. I may have to camp out in the living room all night to make sure the line does not stretch and/or break even though the hardware guy swore that he never sold a reel of fishing line to someone preparing to fish. I still have three pictures, big framed pictures, that I want to hang, that I cannot imagine not having on the walls in my home and I’m not sure how to do it. I am used to banging a nail into dry wall, perhaps looking for a stud. The patience of this house stretches me thin. Continue reading
Sunday, second day of the Framingham PopCult Anime Con.
Spiky green hair or extraordinarily long pink hair, intricate foam weapons, knee high boots with lifts, tails and long gray gloves, short skirted Japanese school girl uniforms, maids and sword carrying warriors stalk the hotel halls. There are a few other functions going on in the hotel. Did the family reunion in the Concord Room know they would be running into imaginary adventurers?
Julia’s passion for My Hero Academia is completely in line with the many, many con attendees who are dressed as Hero characters or sporting identifiable tee shirts. Lots of bought costumes and some more original hand made ones are on display. A beautiful looking Howl from Howl’s Moving Castle won best costume of the con. The character, Howl, is male; I am not sure of the con’s Howl. The gender of many bewigged attendees is a complete mystery and after awhile I stop guessing. So many of the anime characters could be either or both depending on the adventure, the plot line, or the preference of the composer. Boys in skirts and make up; girls as male warrior characters. Julia has gone from rigid identifications of gender when she entered high school to the ability to accept the fluidity of this gathering. She declares that she wants to cross-dress but either I don’t understand exactly what she means or she doesn’t understand the concept. She still wants to wear dresses and skirts all the time. Now, how is that cross dressing? Continue reading
“The deeper that sorrow curves into your being‚ the more joy you can contain.” ~Khalil Gibran (Also, Sr. Francis said something like this to me when I sought her counsel after my first “true love” broke up with me. I have been taught the same lessons over and over.)
Writing around the photos from last week when I should be making phone calls. I almost posted pictures without words, thinking that energy should be put to the practical and useful. I let that thought pass.
We made it to a beach on Friday. Unfortunately, the beach itself was not all that hospitable. Revere Beach, which to tell the truth I had been warned might disappoint. It was low tide and the waves were smaller that Lake Michigan’s waves on a sunny day. The damp and wet sand was covered with a bit of sea weed and a lot of brown oozy stuff. I googled around trying to figure out what it was but the best I could find was a newspaper description of “yucky brown stuff that smells.” Is it bacteria? Have I been away from oceans for too long to know what is normal? Continue reading
Saturday. 4:34 pm. 95 Degrees F (35 C).
The house is pleasant with the window air conditioner working in the living room and the portable air conditioner at the other end of the house in the kitchen. We’ve been puttering all day, only pausing briefly to check outside on how hot the hot really was. Julia unpacked our CDs onto the rack. I rearranged furniture; consolidated boxes, put the IKEA tv table together, organized the electric cords for the tv, air conditioner and internet, put stuff that I have no room for on Facebook Marketplace and answered email. It has been a productive day but strangely unsatisfying.
I have 10 boxes left to unpack (There are more boxes in the basement but most are storage boxes. At least, for now.). Inside the 10 boxes is art, pictures, and decoration. Funny, I think I started with 10 boxes of art, etc., and I’ve unpacked a few. Is the art multiplying? Continue reading
“Emptiness refers to the absence of something that, for some reason, one expects to find—as when we say a glass, normally used to hold liquids, is empty even though it is full of air. The point is not that there is nothing there at all, but rather that what is there differs from your expectations.” ~William S. Cobb, “The Game of Go”
Expectations. Emptiness. What I hold on to that I don’t even form into thoughts, into the stuff of consciousness. Unconscious expectations. Ah, that is interesting stuff.
Sunday. Julia is up first, watched some tv, folded her clothes and taking a shower. For days, her lack of independence compared to her typical peers has been what I see and I have felt such sadness. For me, for sure, but more, for her. Listening to her move around our new home, sounds that are unfamiliar and not easily identified, I see, ah yes, I see, expectations. For all that I preach, to myself and others, about natural unfolding and patience, I am still comparing her to peers. I am comparing peacocks to robins. Continue reading
Small adventures. A visit to Newton-Wellsley Hospital for help applying for Julia’s MassHealth insurance and then hours at my desk filling out the supplemental disability form. Done and mailed and waiting.
A visit to the MA Registry of Motor Vehicles on Monday to get (1) my license, (2) MA plates and (3) a non-driver’s license ID for Julia. I didn’t bring sufficient documentation for my license and I don’t yet have sufficient documentation for Julia’s ID. And Oy, registration and plates. I need my title to change registration and I don’t have one.
It’s a long story, a perfect example of the perils of procrastination. Continue reading