"That is pointless, meatless, and quite frankly it's making me feel queasy!"
Today my son was slapped, in the face, by a stranger.
You can read about it here
- because I’m just too tired and discouraged to write it all out again.
I am angry with this woman, and her full-grown companion who apparently backed up her lie. I guess I should have known this was a possibility. I can understand someone having a bad day and making a mistake, and I have empathy for such a scenario. But clearly this is a sick couple of individuals and it really saddens me that they displayed cowardice in response to a child brave enough to make a report. My son not only was brave enough to tell me – he was clearly afraid to do so, worried the woman might get “in trouble” – but he also conducted himself at the police station admirably even though he had his worries.
I am angry with the police, too. The officer who took our report saw the mark on my son’s cheek (we went straight to the station afterward), and admitted my son had no reason to make up such a story. At the same time, he told me that since there was a “witness” backing up this woman’s story, that no criminal charge could be filed. Affter I expressed my concerns about the dangerousness of an adult who would assault a child, then when confronted, deny the assault - the officer speaking with me said she “wasn’t dangerous” and cited her age as proof of this.
After this officer told me a criminal charge wasn’t possible, and I asked him for advice, he told me, “Don’t let your son walk alone in that area.”
I will just give you a minute to think about that one.
I am angry – and sad – because besides the woefully callous regard for my own child’s experience of assault, what is this saying for the other children in the neighborhood? Who is protecting them? Are we waiting for another incident before we take this woman’s actions seriously?
When I told Nels the woman denied hitting him, his face registered total, bald shock and he said, “What? … How is that possible?” I hugged him and I told him sometimes grownups lied. I told him I believed him, and that I love him. He put his arms around me and melted against me.
Nels and I did our part by filing a report. I have to tell myself that. Whatever this woman’s actions, we did our part by taking action. My son – my son is very brave and today was a day for him to demonstrate this.
I am discouraged, angry, and feeling that whole stew of ick one feels when their family is threatened.
My kiddo seems okay, and for that – I am very grateful.Read More
Hi peeps. Just a reminder, if you’re enjoying my blog, I do accept donations as they make a large difference to our family’s living experience. I am happy to accept Paypal, check, or hidden cash in a large box of tasteful and seasonal fruit mailed to my residence.* Every little bit goes a long way. Several $25-and-under donations this last week have kept us fed and in wonderful spirits.
Feeding and caring for our family is an adventure! As of this week, I have leads on two good jobs. But, I live in a county with the highest unemployment rate of the state – almost twice the state average. A job may be on the horizon but who knows how long ’til I get there!
And now, back to our regular scheduled programming. Thank you for your patience with this post, and thank you also for your many, many kinds of support! As I’ve said before, in ten years’ blogging I’ve received and appreciated comments, calls, texts, emails, tweets, snail mail, and even anonymous mailbox-stuffing (which I am bound to report now, is a Federal Crime). All of these are firmly in the “support” category – usually – and they keep me inspired to keep writing.
Have a wonderful February.
*I was going to post a picture of a vintage seasonal fruit label but a bunch of them were horrifically racist so I got discouraged and left off.Read More
I’m up early and my daughter is in the bathroom, getting ready for her day. She’s just applied green eyeshadow and looks smart in her skinny jeans and layered tops: Seahawks colors, in celebration of yesterday’s big win.
“How did you sleep?” she asks me.
“I slept well, but I woke too early.” I sit next to her while she ties her shoes.
“Are you stressed?” she asks, glancing up at me.
“I am. A little.”
“What are you worried about?”
“Stuff.” I rise, go to the window, open the curtain a bit. The morning light, a bit of sanity, a respite from the terror of night.
“I just heard about this study, where they analyzed nightmares. It was found people often suffered nightmares when they were stressed about something – usually relationships. Or money.”
“Bingo,” I say, thinking, food. Although my kids don’t need to know that exactly.
“I felt so moved reading that study because, I know what it’s like to have nightmares. Although -” her face scrunches in what is an almost comically-adorable expression of wonder – “I haven’t had nightmares in a long time. I used to.”
I ask her if she is happy in her life.
“Yes… mostly. It’s not perfect.”
“I doubt anyone has a perfect life,” and I’m thinking, Sophie, I don’t know why but something about her scrunched face reminds me of her toddlerhood and so my mind finds her long-ago child name –
“But – what would you like different?” I ask.
She looks at me with frank appraisal, yet she is blushing.
“Besides that,” I tell her.
“I think… I would like… a nice family.”
I’m surprised. “Oh? We aren’t ‘nice’?”
“It’s not perfect,” she repeats, but she’s thoughtful as she says it.
“What do you wish was different?” I ask her. She’s the wisest person of the four of us anyway, and – tired as I am, I’m willing to hear some new ideas.
“I don’t know,” she says now, sitting up on the couch and looking at me. Young tigress.
“How about that is your assignment for today. Think about what you’d like differently for the family.”
She nods, turns her head – her sleek hair pulled in a ponytail. She is very lovely, in every way.
You can see why, this morning, I was desirous to type out our conversation before it flitted from my mind.
My mind. My practitioner told me I should rest it, to feed my blood. I believe she is right. Resting one’s mind is quite a challenge!
I am stressed, I am worried. I am. A little. I’m not thrilled my sleep was shortchanged but since I’m up, I will wash dishes and take my dog on a run. It’s true today I’d rather curl up and “do nothing” but I’m going to do what I should because I should do it. I gotta be patient and not panic although when my sleep is disrupted, I tend to worry.
Patience. Patience. At swim class the other day, the lifeguard told me: “The only sport – the ONLY sport – where you have to consciously think about your breathing.”
Yes. & no. Today I gotta breathe right, even though my head is nowhere near water.Read More
Have I not been threatening for some time, to make a tiny yeti bunting for a baby? Shown here: exhibit Audra, 15 lbs. 5 oz. of adorable. Audra was a champ. Word on the street is she doesn’t like cameras, but she kept her cool today.
Audra plays innocent here but you know she’s the type of abominable snowman that could straight-up rip your arm from your socket. If by “arm” I meant, “tea scone”, and by “your socket” I meant, “a table of modest height that she was clinging to earlier today”.
A horn! Done up in melton wool with yarn applique. Pattern designed by Ralph AwesomePants Hogaboom.
Feet. Designed by MOI. Watch out for those claws!
What’s the happs? Pearl snaps. BOOM
So who doesn’t like daddies-holding-babies pictures? If you don’t, you have a lot of growing up to do.
Anyway I wrote a bit about construction in the captions of the Flickr tagset. This bunting is listed in my wee Etsy shop and is scheduled for display at a local business – along with two other “monstrous” offerings I’m currently cooking up.
Today No-No went off to PAWS of Grays Harbor to (hopefully) get placed in a Forever Home. I made up a mini-dossier for her for any prospective family:
We said goodbye…
Nels’ general deportment reveals how I felt about it, too:
A little later I got a call; within two hours of bringing her to PAWS, she’d been adopted.
Sad. Times. (Happy times for No-No, one hopes – but:)
Sad. Times.Read More
I’m dismayed to report that stress has gotten the better of me, just a bit. It’s not that I think I should be stress-free or anything. It’s just: I’m on that roller coaster and while I can practice some self- and other-care to help me out, I can’t just magic-wand the anxiety away.
A few times this last week I’ve been slamming awake at night just minutes after falling asleep, in a panic. This used to happen nightly; but I’d had a reprieve for a few months, thank baby Jeebus. The panic dissipates slowly over a few minutes, and I fall asleep within a half hour. Then, I sleep well (I think), but then in the morning, the last couple weeks or more, every morning, I wake up and:
How will I feed the family today? Tuesday I had put aside my Singer treadle; an acquaintance had asked us to hold it and was adamant they wanted to buy it. Then, about an hour before they were to come over, they cancelled. Now this kind of thing, to them maybe it’s no big deal, but for me: food for us for the next four days, vanished. I am not angry, though – of course not. I know that caring for my family is my responsibility, not someone else’s.
Yesterday I saw my doctor for a few issues, including some “sports” injuries, and an unrelated nerve pain in my arm. He gave me medicine for the latter and said it would help with insomnia. I thought about telling him I was experiencing stress but I kept quiet on that point since we had other things to talk about. I have a follow-up with him in two months and if I’m still having troubles, I can tell him then.
There are times in my life I find it almost impossible not to be intensely preoccupied with the struggles I have. Yes, they are real but, come on – they aren’t that big a deal, when I pull back and look at my life from the perspective of the massive, infinite Universe. I am only on this planet in this body for a minute or so! Why my preoccupation? Selfishness, really.
I do what I can to find some balance. I try to eat right, to drink my five quarts daily of water, to get some exercise, to rest up, to meditate. It is at the point that even if I rest, I don’t feel very rested. I am drained and tired. But I try to rest and eat anyway, as well as I can, and I turn my thoughts to one thing that seems to ease my mind and nurture my spirit: helping others without regard for return.
And on that note, wee kitten No-No, whom we’ve fostered a little over two weeks, is going off to PAWS on Saturday to receive her vaccinations and be made viewable to the public. Surely she will be adopted her first day in public (and if not, we will pick her up and bring her here again, then bring her back on next adoption day) so on Saturday when we drop her off and I CONFESS after we kiss her black kitty lips at eleven A.M., it will likely be the last time I get to hold her.
This is going to sound – well, who gives a shit how it sounds. What I want to say is, I am proud of my family for fostering this little kitten. She is just a little tuft of life but without our care (and the vet’s medical attention) she would have had a feral kittenhood and adult cat life, which is to say a dangerous one. As it is, in our home, she’s been well-fed, de-flea’d, and loved up almost every waking moment.
Maybe it’s precisely because times are tough, doing something I know makes a difference, it feels concrete in some way.
Some people teased me we were just adopting a kitten, not fostering it, but our foster intentions were real and still are. I am glad to let No-No have a forever home although I’m not going to lie, I will MISS HER so much.
Even as I type, she prounces under my desk and swats at my feet. I reach down and she’s already purring, an anticipatory response to pleasure. I curl her up on my chest and smell her honey-fur warmth and it’s off to lie down a bit. Patience, and rest, and taking things slow.Read More
Today – at least – I snapped a picture of the jacket gifted to a wee gentleman at his 2-year birthday party.
Double-sided fleece, self-drafted pattern. Super-pointy hood and seven hand-made pom poms. Trippin on pom pom-makin, biatches
Yesterday morning I wake -
after only a few hours sleep -
to the most oppressive sense of fear.
Slaps me awake and lasts at least half the day. I’m up and I try to do a few things then rest, but I can’t. My mind keeps trying to find a way out of the fear. I can’t think of anything else for long, before jolting back. Might as well make the coffee. Hot shower. Time to get up and go. Got responsibilities.
My mind like to drive me mad. Thinking, thinking, over-thinking. Trying to set it aside but it rises up again through my body. Fear racing through my chest and my kids talk to me, my husband asks after me, and I answer as best I can when I can pull my mind off the fixation. Can they tell? I don’t know. I don’t think so. They’d ask if they knew something was wrong.
Days like today I remember smoking. Pulling on a cigarette, getting that edge. Somehow it always seemed to help, keep me in that space of what I thought was alertness, but in reality: agitation.
And anyway: I quit smoking a while back. And now I’m over the bridge and into breaking sunlight when I know the only thing that will help me, since I’ve done prayer on my knees and lit a candle and eaten food and tried to breathe and tried to quit thinking, is to Help Others. Help Without Regard For Return. It’s not even like I think I get some reward if I help. It’s that the state of Helping takes me somewhere different, and things shift, and clarity comes.
My daughter wraps her arms around me. “Love me,” she says. I hold her and kiss the top of her head, her dry straw-scented hair; Heaven. Later. Running bath water. Kitchen light low. Hot water and a tablespoon of molasses. A heater ticks in the dark. My arm: aching. The laughter of my son in another room.
Cold to the bone, a darkness stretching out. Only a small candle but it’s enough.