This is a slow time of year for blog fodder.
The time after Christmas is quiet and contemplative for me.
So, I'm just writing down some of my thoughts and happenings of the last two weeks.
As you can tell from the picture, we got rain. Two and half inches of rain. The first truly measurable rainfall since October. We've gotten the odd thunderstorm that blows through and drops a quarter inch of rain since then, but I don't really consider those totals unless we get several over the course of a week or two. I guess it adds up, but it seems to barely get the ground wet when it only rains a 1/4 inch.
In several of my earlier posts, I documented my mother-in-love's fall, broken hip, surgery and recovery. She was finally able to go home on January 5th, after spending a week in rehab at a local nursing home. Not her favorite week of life, I'm certain. Goodgolly, I don't want mom or dad to ever feel like they ever have to live in a nursing home.
Nursing homes, no matter how nice the staff and clean the building, have their own challenges. I think the biggest challenge for me was seeing folks in the late winter of their lives. Mom had a particularly difficult woman at her table in the dining room. A woman who had hearing loss and dementia working against her. Obviously, the woman had nothing to call her own but a place at that table and some things in a room that she shared with another woman. I don't know if anyone ever came to vist. I do know that she was a "crabby old lady" (media's depiction, not mine).
What caused my mind to spin round and round regarding this was, "How will I keep from becoming a crabby old lady? I'm already prone to seeing the negative side of things. Will my behavior, as I age, cause folks to not want to be around me? More to the point, how will I change a lifetime of behavior on my own part?
In the same vein, I looked at the part of life that is "helping others".
I was so very glad to be able to help mom and dad in the small ways that I could.
Their situation was never, for one minute, a burden on me.
I am so thankful they were here for me to help, instead of still in Arkansas.
Why then, if I'm so happy to give help, am I so against receiving it.
I put myself in my mom's situation (before she died) and in my mother-in-love's situation, in my head. I now understand why my mom holed up and pushed everyone away before she died.
She didn't feel worthy of the help. She didn't want to put anyone out.
I wouldn't either.
If I were to come down with some terminal disease or become disabled, it would kill me to have someone clean my house, make us dinner, care for my family, or worst of all--care for my physical body.
Obviously, I'm in a funk.
Can you say Mid-Life Crisis. My job, for the last nearly 21 years, has been child care. Quinn is 14, Jenna is 18 and headed off to college next year, Preston will soon be 21 and married this time next year. My job is being phased out. Naturally, I'm wondering about the next 21 years of my life and beyond. There's nothing out there. There's not another job that I want---heck, who would hire someone whose last job was 22 years ago? I have, unfortunately, not done as wiser folks than me suggested over the years---to have a hobby, do things for myself, or have an interest outside raising my children. There's honest to goodness, nothing that I'm interested in. And so, the whole world now knows that I'm floundering around in self wonder and worry.
Chickens have begun laying again. Having 'real' eggs again is wonderful. Almost enough to share with my in-loves!
Jenna and Quinn headed back to school. Both were glad to go back. Jenna is now counting the days until graduation. I just filled out the forms for graduation cap and gown and ordered announcements. Didn't I just do that for Preston??
Preston got a promotion at work. He's a manager of some sort (they have many) at HEB. He's the guy who makes the grocery lines run smoothly. He's been wanting this for several months. He thinks HEB might be a good place to land once he's finished with college. They are a great company to work for and their headquarters are in San Antonio. He and Katie don't want to move too far away once they're married----San Antonio would be perfect. He hopes to end up in the business and marketing division of HEB. He's not really interested in working the retail angle of it as a career.
Speaking of college--he's headed back on Monday. Hard to believe his junior year is almost over!
Eric and I are going with friends to Steamboat, CO in January. They had an opening in their condo and we decided to go along. I'm not a skier, but Eric loves it (snowboarding, actually). I will read, take walks, take naps, shop, hit a hot spring, and try snowshoeing.
The weather here is confused, as is typical for the Hill Country in winter. Foggy, rainy, cold, warm, sunny--we've got it all.