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Jun 10 2014

The dregs of the drafts folder

the dregs of the drafts folderI was doing a little back-end housecleaning and oh hello, the drafts folder. Where posts go to die. I know there are bloggers out there who have several hundred or even thousand dribbles of posts in their drafts folder, but I don’t. I have an entirely separate working system where I have, at present, eleventy-billion different ideas in various stages of fleshed-out-edness. If something is in my drafts folder, it means I fully intended to finish and publish it. And then didn’t. Because it probably sucked. But because I haven’t written much as of late…because reasons…and because I hate tossing mostly written posts as much as I hate tossing mostly expired foods, y’all get to read bits and pieces of the posts that sucked juuuuust enough to not make the cut. Or got forgotten. Or both.

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From mid-April:   On Thursday the last of the five foot snow pile in the backyard finally melted away. It was in the shade on the north side of the house and was pretty much just ice at the end. Muddy ice mixed with blacktop from the driveway and probably some dog poop in there too, because nothing says IT WAS THE COLDEST WINTER IN CHICAGO’S RECORDED HISTORY than dog poop frozen to every possible outdoor ground cover. Needless to say, J earned a pretty penny recently scraping up and properly disposing of several month’s worth of poopsicles. I’m not convinced spring is here. The calendar says yes, the fact that I’m still wearing base layers, scarves, and wool socks into April says bwahahahahahahahahahaha!!!!!!!! Yet I look out the window from where I’m sitting, huddled in a blanket and drinking hot things, and I see grass rapidly greening. There are bulbs bursting out of the ground so insistently that you can practically hear them bitching about how sick to death they are of being underground and it’s about damned time Chicago! Trees have those red bud things on them, dangling high above, ready to drop and be tracked into the house along with old leaves from last fall and mud, mud, and more mud. Birds and squirrels are rumbling a la the Sharks and the Jets over seeds and nuts, and the chipmunks are flashing gang signs, ready to take on the winner for bragging rights. Pollen counts are jumping as rapidly as the used tissue mountains in the house. Rumor has it that we might hit low 70s by this weekend. Is that allowed? Are we breaking some sort of cosmic Chicagoland weather law by having warm temperatures? This winter was brutal, last summer merely tepid. There’s a chill in my bones so deep I’d need to be wedged into a rotisserie oven for several weeks to chase it out.

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From sometime in February…I think:   Well, today’s a wash. I gave up a couple hours ago. The day started so well. I was up! I got a kid out the door! I started the long and painful process of poking the bear waking the other kid! I was caffeinated! It was sunny! I wasn’t shoveling or driving in yet more snow! I got several items knocked off the to-do list in record time! And then SQUIRREL hit. Sometime around 9:30 or so my brain went, “Pfft. You’re boring. And I don’t like what’s left on your list. And I don’t want to concentrate and I don’t want to play with you and I don’t want to play the Force The Kid To Do His Lessons game and frankly I’m sick of you and of winter and of the whole shebang and it’s far too early to drink and even Twitter is boring and why is no one on Facebook to entertain me and god even blog reading sucks and it’s too bright in here and someone call me a waaaaahmbulance because it’s over toots put a fork in me I’m done.” My brain can be a real prick sometimes. I swear I don’t have ADD (except for the whole Adult Onset Child Induced ADD thing, which pretty much starts with the first diaper change), but damn today I had to wonder. If this is what A has to struggle with every day…well, let’s just say I have a greater respect for what he’s still able to accomplish. I can’t believe he hasn’t tried to rip off my head; if I’d had someone today trying to redirect me all day to follow their plan while I was having a nearly impossible time focusing long enough to think, I’d be writing this from prison. Homeschooling has been a challenge lately, and I don’t think it’s just the fact that the whole family is suffering from an intolerable case of cabin fever. I have wanted to drop A off at the nearest middle school at least once a day for the last six weeks. Just hand him over and say, “Dudes, he’s yours now. Educate him and call me only if there’s Blood, Bone, Vomit, or Fire. Learning, lessons, testing, homework, studying….you deal with it, I just can’t anymore.” As that is in no way a viable option I just keep on keeping on. Our homeschool has a terrible case of SQUIRREL. A has little to no desire to learn anything right now, and would prefer to spend all day every day coding. I know there are a lot of homeschoolers out there who would recommend just letting him do that, but for him? That much time on a screen scrambles his brains. It really throws him out of whack and he becomes…well, ass is being kind.

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From May:   I am past phoning it in, I have flat-out given up. I have no more fights left in me for the year. If A gets anything accomplished that resembles learning, fine. If he sits and watches crappy Minecraft videos for hours on end, fine. (Well, not fine, but I just can’t…) I’m so done I’m already done for next spring too. This, our second full year of homeschooling, has been rough and I’m just drained. I want to enjoy this homeschooling adventure and I’m not. The whole trying to figure out what’s going to work and for how long with a stubborn and oftentimes resistant learner is not fun. Because I’m working two jobs he needs to be more independent and work when I’m not here to hold his hand. He also needs to learn that when I am here to work with him and hold his hand, maybe he should move his ass and take advantage of that fact without me having to take that hand and drag the body to which it is attached to the table to work with me. So as a preservation mechanism, my brain has moved to summer. Unfortunately, because my brain has moved to summer mode, it means that I don’t actually have anything planned for the boys for the summer because that would require concentration and in summer mode concentration doesn’t exist. In years past that has never gone well. Ever. At all. They are currently signed up for the summer school program at Minecraft Homeschool and that.is.it. Eleven weeks of summer, one computer program that is done in my house on top of me on my computer taking turns and bickering please someone help. I’ve tried to sign them up for summer camps and have been shot down on every suggestion except the robotics class that is 45 minutes away and only two hours long…and is now full. Hold me.

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I have no clue when this was written, but it’s been a loooong while:   In my life, anything that happens before caffeine has not only hit my system but is making me vibrate is just not a good idea. I stumble around, I have conversations with my sons that rival anything on a sitcom (“Mom, if we could harness energy from alcohol, sugar, and sex, we’d have no power shortages at all!”), I misread things on my Facebook feed. I follow the Summit Center on Facebook. It provides services for gifted and 2e kids in the San Francisco and LA areas (psst…we could really use a satellite office in the northern Chicago metro area…hint, hint…). The other morning I caught a post from them in my feed about a recommended blog post on envy and giftedness. In my half-conscious state, I didn’t quite catch that the post was about others envying the gifted. You know, the old annoying story (mentioned in the post) of “I hate hearing about your gifted child,” though sadly no mention of my rebuttal post (with a respectable number of comments thankyouverymuch). Cross my heart, I thought the post was about gifted parents envying non-gifted parents. Why wouldn’t we envy other parents? Parents raising neurotypical kids? We’re the outliers here, why wouldn’t we envy the “norm?”

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Believe it or not, that’s not even all of the languishing posts in the drafts folder. I’m still hopeful I can resuscitate some of the others. Maybe today. Maybe not. It is summer break you know, and I still haven’t found activities for the boys outside the house. Because I can barely complete a thought with them banging around the house, it may be a summer of Dregs from the Drafts folder posts. No one is more thrilled than I by that possibility.

::headdesk::

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