Update on the school thing and work thing

Well we got a letter saying the teacher in question had resigned. I suppose they gave her the option. I am still really pissed at the head of the school committee who was clearly the one fighting for this teacher to stay. I don’t interact with her though and had never met her besides this meeting.

Yesterday I was hanging out at my parent’s house with Lamb. My brother, his wife, and their three kids were staying at my parents house while having some work done on their own house. My 4 year old niece started asking me some questions. My niece goes to like a mother’s day out program 2 x a week and her mom is a stay at home mom.

Niece: Can you guys have a sleep over here tonight?

Me: No, we can’t. We have to go back to our house tonight.

Niece: Why?

Me: Well, Lamb is going to school tomorrow and I am going to work tomorrow.

Niece: Why does Lamb have to go to school tomorrow?

Me: Because I’m going to work and Lamb needs to be taken care of when I’m gone.

Niece: Do you go to work every day?

Me: Yes

Niece: Do you ever get to stay home with Lamb? Doesn’t she miss you?

Me: Sure, I take vacation sometimes and days off..

Niece: Why do you have to go to work every day? To make lots of money and buy expensive things?

Me: Well, I do work so we can put food on the table and pay our bills. But I don’t just work for money. I work because I like what I do.

Niece: What do you do?

Me: I’m a counselor. I try to help people.

Niece: How do you help them?

Me: Well, sometimes they feel sad or they are having problems. I help them figure out how to find solutions to their problems or help make them feel better.

ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh kids. kids and their questions that make your heart hurt sometimes. So I miss my baby. I miss her growing up. I hate being gone away from her so much.

But then, days like yesterday, I kind of have these moments where I want to pull my hair out and think, you drive me CRAZY little toddler! She’s so clingy sometimes. I wonder if her clinginess is in part due to her not getting to spend enough time with me. Or maybe it’s just her personality. Or maybe a little of both. So slap on the mom guilt now that I’m going to be home 1- 1.5 hours later than usual on Mondays and Wednesdays as I go to my work out class (we signed up at the gym btw). Ugh. I really wish I could just work Mon/Wed/Friday. Maybe that can happen at some point.

So, I decided to potentially stay at my job for now. You all know I’ve had a lot of angst about staying here. It does allow me SOME flexibility being that one of my best friends is technically my direct supervisor, so it’s really not a problem if I take vacation here and there or sick days here and there. Also, leaving 10 minutes early to make it to the gym Mondays and Wednesdays isn’t a problem either.

The other reason for staying is that we may be getting this new grant in September. This new grant would allow me to get amazing training on Acceptance and Commitment Therapy and be trained with one of the big wig founders for that type of therapy (possibly). So, I’m waiting to hear about that. It’s the type of therapy I would like to do with clients if I moved into private practice, so becoming a stronger therapist in that regard would be worth the wait. We’ll see.

but still. so much angst.

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On the horizon

Before I gave birth to my daughter, I was a regular at the gym 3-4 days a week. I did Body Pump, which is a weight lifting class. I benefited so much from it, and I continued attending class until I was 37 weeks pregnant and my feet were too swollen to fit into my shoes.

Obviously, all that fell by the wayside and I haven’t worked out consistently since. I had cancelled my gym membership right before I gave birth.

My husband, on the other hand, runs every single day. He has to, for his mental health. If he doesn’t go running, things start going south pretty quick. He’s also gotten into biking recently. Anyway, it hasn’t really been fair because although he drops Lamb off at school and picks her up from school almost every day, I come home from work around 4:45 and then take over and Adam gets to go running. He picks up dinner for the both of us while I take care of Lamb and put her to bed.

I am sort of getting this desire to be pregnant again (probably from reading my old blog posts and seeing pictures of myself pregnant). But I also don’t want to be pregnant because I read all my blog posts and remember how miserable parts of it were 🙂

I know that we won’t be trying to get pregnant within the next 6 months, that’s for sure. It’s not even something we’re talking about. But, even the idea of pregnancy makes me want to get into shape. I felt really good during most of my pregnancy and I think that was in part due to my adherence to regular physical activity. I liked the way I looked pregnant. I felt strong. I miss that. I think it also helped me recovery from pregnancy (physically) much faster. I don’t want another potential pregnancy to pack on the pounds. I want to be back in better shape. I want to feel the way I did.

So yesterday I spoke with Adam about me wanting to work out more. He suggested that we join the YMCA as a family (I used to be a member there which is where I did all my body pump classes). He said we could all go, or switch off on who takes care of Lamb. So, now I’m thinking I might be able to start attending again on Mondays, Wednesays and possibly Saturday//Sundays.

Dude. It would be SO weird to walk back in there! Especially seeing my old instructors who followed me through my whole pregnancy. Dammmnnn this would be weird. The last time they saw me I looked like this:

37 weeks2

Making a book out of my blog

So, I’ve kept a personal blog that family and friends read. It updates on what my daughter’s doing, includes pictures, etc. I started that blog when I was 25 weeks pregnant.

I have researched a lot of different companies that will print your blog, but from the reviews I have read there are definitely cons to each of those companies. I recently decided to go with LuLu publishing after reading about a positive experience with them and the format. There is one huge downside though. Formatting. I had to copy and paste every single blog post to a word document. I had some problems because my blog had tons of picture sand videos and links. I had to remove all the pictures and videos. I will have to insert back in the pictures that I want so that the pictures are imbeded in the word document and not just a link to the internet.

It’s taking FOREVER! (editing post by post) But, when I am done, I think it’s going to be pretty awesome. Everything should be formatted beautifully and it should be easy to read. I am really excited because I would have loved something like that, to read all my mom’s thoughts about being pregnant and her experiences as a mother.

This is kind of morbid sounding but I sort of see it like a form of insurance, just in case something happens to me, my daughter will get a glimpse into who I am and my love for her. Hopefully though I live a very long time with her!

Secular vs Faith based schools

So, as I consider potential other schools for my daughter to attend (just in case), I struggle with a few things. Faith based schools are typically less expensive. Right now my daughter goes to a faith based school. We pay about $750 a month (that’s for generally 7:30am-4pm care) plus a $300 yearly registration fee. They provide snacks and lunch. It’s a baptist school, which is fine. I mean, right now my daughter is so young that being in a super high faith environment is probably not extremely impactful.

Non faith based schools in our area typically cost about $1,100+ per month. That’s half my take home salary. At that point it just doesn’t even seem to make sense. There is one a couple blocks from my house that is pretty bad ass. You know, all the bells and whistles and such. But I just don’t know if we want to be paying that much every single month.

So, I go back to faith based schools. Tuition in the area seems to range from $800-950 for full time. So, the school we go to right now is currently one of the least expensive options. It’s comparable to the daycare that is semi-associated with my work (which is a secular daycare). My coworker pays $725 for that but they don’t provide meals and there are a lot of other downsides to that daycare. If I switched jobs in the next year that would mean moving my daughter because I work 30 minutes+ away from where I live.

Why would I worry that a religion be too impactful? My husband is definitely not religious. I would consider him an intellectual and spiritual… someone who has read many philosophical and spiritual texts. He was raised Baptist and his mother is hard-core evangelistic. He has a pretty intense negative reaction when it comes to religion, especially Christianity.

I went to a Methodist pre-school, a public elementary school but attended a Methodist church for some of my childhood. My parents were never super religious though or ever pushed religion down my throat. I went to a baptist middle school and an Episcopal high school but never really felt connected to Christianity.

I honestly don’t know where I stand with what I believe in. That’s an uncomfortable space for me to be in a times.Sometimes I felt like going to those schools made me dislike religion even more. I know that I only attended those schools because of the education. My parents weren’t sending me there for spiritual purposes.

So, back to my daughter. I wonder, if we have no religious affiliation, and she goes to some Catholic pre-school or Lutheran pre-school, or heck, even stays at her current Baptist pre-school, will that be weird for her? Will she be getting all this teaching and information (some of the schools require weekly church attendance by the kids during school hours) that doesn’t match up at home? Some of these schools may even hold and/or teach beliefs that are extremely contrary to our own personal values, such as perhaps LGBT issues. I suppose I would have to ask those questions to the school, for the values that are important to me.

Or maybe the whole thing would just be a wash. I mean I went to a methodist pre-school right? Well, I only went 2 days a week and as my mom says it, Methodists are kind of in the realm of all beliefs are welcome here….that’s why she likes it really.  Okay, that’s just her opinion (not trying to offend anyone here).

Just throwing things around in my head right now.

Frustration

Yeah….. so…. the committee was horrifically defensive for the entire painful 1.5 hours (Mo called it). All the parents that were there were pretty disgusted. One spokesperson on the committee was particularly awful. Like a rabid tazmanian devil. Thankfully, the parents weren’t afraid to tell her that.

The way you are responding is not helping. It’s making the situation worse.

You are being so defensive that we’re completely losing our trust in you.  

You clearly aren’t hearing any of our concerns. 

My friend who was there said she felt like the pastor heard us. I’m not entirely sure if he did or not. I mean, of all the people, he was the most neutral one. But I still think the entire committee is blinded because they have been friends with this teacher or known her as a church member for many years.

We as parents made it extremely clear that we wanted this teacher removed and that we would not accept any other outcome. The committee said they would have to talk and they would let us know.

I couldn’t fall asleep last night. I had a small glimpse in to what it would be like for someone with chronic anxiety. I tossed and turned. I fell asleep for a few hours, woke up, stayed awake for another 2 or so hours. I finally dozed back off to sleep around 5am only to be awoken by my daughter over the monitor at 5:30am.

It was kind of adorable. I had failed to pull her hair back in a hairband, and she was sleeping with a bow in her hair. I walked in to her room to find her sitting in her crib, the bow barely attached to a lock of hair that was hanging in her face, crying and complaining “my bow mommy, my bow fell out, my bow.” After I fixed things she then got upset again because she had snot in her nose. She whined “Mommy I have boogers.” So adorable that it made me laugh.

We spent the rest of the morning snuggled in bed watching Wild Kratts. That was at least enjoyable.

Tonight’s the night

Tonight is the meeting with the school. I’m pretty nervous about it. I’m pretty angry with administration and I want them to hear my points which I think are valid. This is way more than just the terrible teacher Ms Mary. This is about how they have protected her over the past 2 years and turned a blind eye to her behavior because of their friendship with her.

There are several points that other parents will be making and that we will be making as a group. But for me, I have two.

1. How often do kids at the school report that teachers have hit them? (my guess is, they will say never, to which I would reply..) Exactly, so when multiple kids have come forward saying this teacher has hit them, and you respond with “she would never do that, your kid must be lying or confusing a hit with a hug” and you question the reliability of the kids, and not the teacher, there is something horribly wrong with that.

2. Why have they kept this teacher on for the past 2 years when there has been clear evidence of her unethical behavior? What purpose has she served the school? How can we trust administration who protects such a person?

Ugh. I really hate confrontation. I really do. It puts my stomach in knots. Hopefully the meeting will be productive, though I am imagining administration acting like they had no idea that this stuff was going on, to which I would to cry BULL SHIT!!!

My Ballerina

Lamb has recently gotten into ballet. Her teachers at school said she might have seen some of the older girls doing ballet. She’s also watching Angelina Ballerina, a lot. All the time.

She has a pink tutu that she asks to wear, and then asks me to play “Cinderella” on my phone, which is basically just ballet music. She says “mommy up mommy up!” when she wants me to do ballet with her. These past few nights we’ve been doing ballet together before bed.

Fortunately, I took ballet as part of my dance curriculum in high school so I at least remember a few basics. She allows me to give her a “lesson” and she follows along. It’s so cute most of the time that I wish I could video the whole thing. I took her through tendu (ton-doo). She could do it. Sticking one foot out in front of her, then the other. She’d say “toodoo!” Then we went through plie (plee-ay) and she’d crouch down to the floor and back up saying pee-ay pee-ay! I taught her arabesque, which she calls besk. 

The whole thing is just really cute. It’s kind of exciting to have a little girl who might be in to dance. Those long legs will serve her well in ballet. I took jazz as a little girl and loved it, but I never liked ballet. It always seemed way too stuffy and snotty. So, we’ll see which way she goes. Ballet is a great foundation for all dance though. She can move on to her generation’s version of Madonna afterward.

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