Sunday, November 25, 2007

Home For the Holidays

My family generally gets together for Thankgiving. This year, though, my brother and his family won't be coming until March. My sister from California did not come in for the holidays. My mom is going there for Christmas. So, only my sister from Alabama came up for the week with her kids. But surprising news, was that my Uncle Mike came down from Long Island for the holiday. My aunts and cousins were also there. It was a great time full of fun and laughter, and of course, football!

My Uncle Mike did well, but there was a moment at the dinner table, when it was obviously very difficult for him to breathe. My niece had accidently set the level on his oxygen bottle to the lowest setting. It is sad to see how sick he has become and I hope that he is able to get a lung transplant in time.

Went to see the movie "Dan in Real Life" on Saturday. I heard so many good things about it on Rachel's blog from some bloggers and had to see it. It was a great movie. Think it has been overlooked. Anytime I told someone I was going to see it, they said they had never heard of it. The theater was pretty empty although the rest of the theaters at the complex seemed busy.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Where Does the Time Go?

I've been so busy - some fun stuff and too much work stuff! Work is driving me absolutely insane! Too many projects, not enough resources or money or more importantly, TIME -- worse of all is the fact that we have undergone so many re-organizations in the last year, that no one knows who is doing what, who should be doing what and who now has the power. So, I spend all my time re-doing things and re-justifying my numbers and project estimates. One of my peers is not doing his job so my boss has re-allocated his work to me. I'm not sure what they are going to do to him, but I am supposed to make him feel involved while overseeing his work (ie. doing it for him) and giving final approval of his work. I told my boss I don't have time to do that, but here I am forced to do it so that the work gets done. We're going to save $15 million a year so it's not something I can let slide.

Anyway, I've been thinking about this post for a long time but haven't had time to put it in words. A few weeks ago, my daughter turned 18. I remember when I found out I was pregnant. I wasn't married and had no plans to get married, was going to school for my second degree, had my own house, a dog I had rescued who was overly aggressive to everyone but me, and I had never wanted to have children. In fact, I had been told I would find it difficult to get pregnant and that was fine with me. As the oldest of four, who babysat her sisters and brother and then babysat most of the neighborhood for pocket money, I had no desire to have children. I worked different shifts and liked to go out too much. Having a child was not in my plans.

But, when I looked at the results of the pregnancy test and I realized I was pregnant, I was so happy. I was very surprised at how happy I was. Even telling my mother, who was not happy with the news, was not difficult. And, she got over it by the time the baby was born. Naturally, she loved being a grandmother.

I had a supportive family and my mom helped me out a lot when my children were younger. Before Sam went to first grade, I lived not too far from where my mom worked so if I had to work late, she could pick her up from day care for me. I did end up marrying Sam's father when she was two, but family responsibilities were not high on his priority list. Part of the reason we didn't stay together. And, when she went to first grade, we moved to about a mile away from my mom's house. In fact, her brother was born a few weeks before Sam went into first grade. We bought a house a block from the elementary school. Sam did not like change as a child, even good changes bothered her. Right before school was to start, they found mold in the school so the kids had to be bussed to different schools. Sam was not happy about that. The first day of school, I walked her to school and while holding her brother, stood by the bus, while she cried in the window of the school bus looking like a refugee child being shipped away from her family and her village. The bus, for some reason, took over a half hour to pull away from the school. I had to stand there and wave and smile for what seemed like an eternity. Every morning, it was the same tragic scene although her teachers told me she was fine in school. Of course, when the school was cleaned up and she came back to the original school in January, she cried because she no longer took the bus to school.

I think I've done ok by Sam. She is not as independent as I would prefer, but she knows her own mind and does not bow into peer pressure. She has always gone her own way regardless of what her friends do and never participated in what she called the "drama" of high school. She knows who she is and doesn't change for anyone else. When I say she is dependent, I mean, more on me than I would prefer. But we have a very close relationship and she tells me pretty much everything, even things she thinks I will be angry about. She is still finding her own way. The girl who hated high school and barely scraped by grade-wise is getting A's in college. Yes, it is a community college and she is still living at home, but she is studying and working hard at her classes. She is also working two jobs -not saving as much as I would like - the girl likes to shop! She doesn't get that from me although I can spend money as well, but I hate going to the mall.

I look at her and I can't believe she is 18. She tells me she is not sure she is ready for the adult thing. I know she is, but I can't believe 18 years have gone past. But I would not want to relive any of those years. People tell me they wish their children were little again. I've never felt that way. I'll be 45 next month. I also don't feel like I'm that old either. Where has the time gone?