Thursday, February 28, 2013

This Week: The Good, the Bad, the Ugly

I am so, so, SO far behind on this blog.  I even went months without checking my stat counter, because I found myself no longer caring.  Today I finally logged in and was surprised to see over 220 hits from Palmdale.  I'm thinking that has to be some sort of glitch...does Palmdale even have 220 people?

Okay, so I'm going to break this down.  Here's this week's "good":

Last weekend we visited my stepsister's farm in Northern California.  That was awesome.  Her and her husband farm walnuts, cherries, and tomatoes; they have so much acreage that I can't even tell where it ends.  They live in a small house that is over 100 years old and is simply adorable.  She's pregnant with twin girls, so we were actually there for her baby shower.  Her baby shower ended up being huge (over 100 women) with the atmosphere of a classy wedding reception...a far cry from your typical pin-the-diaper-on-the-baby type shower. 

Maybe it's because I'm a twin myself, but I think I got a little excited with the prospect of my stepsister having twins.  I don't make gifts EVER (unless it's scrapbooks or paintings); I'm really not a crafty person.  But I wanted to do something cute for the twins, so with the help of my sister-in-law, I made these outfits:


These are completely impractical, but I don't care!  I officially want twin baby girls myself now so I can dress them up in these.

Another good from this week is I have a student, Johnston, who is painfully shy in my classroom, to the point where he will absolutely shut down if I try to get him to read outloud or respond to a question.  The counseling department, after assessing him, finally told me to let him off the hook for sharing outloud and any other verbal presentations.  It's just way too traumatic for him.  But I've been working really hard with him this year, trying to guide him into being more comfortable talking in front of people.  Every step of the way I let him know that I wasn't going to push him, but I wanted him to know that I believed he was capable of expressing his thoughts outloud, and that others would appreciate what he had to contribute.  Well today Johnston did a full two minute presentation in front of the class!  I was so blown away and had to try not to cry.  He actually volunteered to talk for his group, and I could see him shaking with fear, but after awhile he started smiling and laughing.  He was amazing.  I've never once heard his voice that loud and clear before, and it was the most words I have heard him utter this entire school year.  Before he left class, I told him, "Johnston, you made my heart sing today," and he was grinning from ear-to-ear.

The bad:

My coworkers--the ones I have the closest relationships with, are dropping like flies.  Every day I eat lunch with my collegues Niecy, Brad, Bev, and Mr. Moore.  Or I used to.  Niecy has been out for about half of the school year now due to her health issues.  Brad (previously dubbed "Mr. A")--the teacher whose shoulder I cried on my first year of teaching, who talked me into getting a master's degree, who taught me how to play three-card-poker at an Indian Casino, who taught me how to ski, who carried me home when I was drunk--left our school last week to pursue a new career as a speech pathologist.  That one hit me hard.  I could write an entire post just on this, but our initial e-mails to each other sum it up well enough:

Me:  Oh my god, I just read the bulletin and got a cold chill. You're leaving us? No Brad, no!!! 
(Okay, I'll work on being more supportive). 
 
Brad:  Lol... I love you too.  You have been one of my favorite peeps since I got here... love you and your husband.  You are both good people!   The kids love your joy and enthusiasm as well... it shows every day. 

After that, crying and temper tantrums ensued (he cried, I threw tantrums). 

In addition to that, Mr. Moore, my onery lunch buddy who I just adore, is retiring at the end of this year.  So I have only three short months left of his teasing me and always thinking I'm crazy.  Bev, our quirky music teacher, will still be here next year, but her prep period follows lunch, so she doesn't join us until the last ten minutes or so. 

I'm not a person who likes change, and I hate it that the people I care about are disappearing little by little from my life.

The ugly:

I just got the news today that a friend from high school died.  I went to his facebook wall after work, and it made me sick to my stomach.  I know it's just a personal thing, but I hate how people are writing "R.I.P. Ed" all over his wall as if it were no different than plastering birthday wishes; as if he can actually read them.  They're also writing stuff like "You were a good person" and "I'll miss you."  Again, as if he can read them.  That's a new low...death itself being cheapened by social networking.  Way to go facebook.   

This day sucks in other ways, but I've written enough for now. 

I'm stuck on sappy love songs right now.  This one isn't exactly "pretty," but it still moves the hell out of me.