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Writings on Motherhood, Judaism, and Happily-Ever-Afters

Observations from December

I’ve declared the December Dilemma over.  It’s simply not something I participate in anymore.  I don’t think I could have done this earlier, it was a long process to get me to this point.  I don’t regret all the angst, because I had to get thru it, but I’m much more relaxed and peaceful about it this year.

This is the last year that I’ll be driving my girls together to school.  I drop Jessie at the bus stop every morning on the way to drop Julie at elementary school.  But next year, my baby starts high school, and will be on a completely different schedule in the mornings.  I can’t quite grasp that concept – high school… but hopefully, by the time September rolls around, I’ll be ready.

We’re still in the processs of deschooling/working our way into homeschooling with Sam.  I hit math and history most days, but we’re going to step it up in the new year.  He’s doing a TON of reading (or listening, as audio books are still his main source of reading).  He’s learning, and happy – and I’m still worried about him on about a hundred different levels, but we’re getting used to the new normal.  He’s legally blind.  And while it doesn’t impact him in every way – he’s still video game obsessed, still watches too much youtube, can walk the dog and see well enough to pretend that he’s not – it does impact him in a thousand little ways.  It obviously impacts his education, his ability to read and write, his ability to hang out with us and watch movies or play games.  Everything is different, in so many ways – but in so many other ways, he’s still my Sammy, the same goofy, sweet little guy he always has been.

Julianna is not a little girl any more.  I think sometimes it must be very tough to be the little one in this family.  Especially because the older two are such intense personalities.   She’s got to figure out her identity – in a family where there’s already a dramatic intense girly girl and a goofy intense little guy.  She fights with Jessie all the live long day – and Jessie fights right back at her.  They squabble all the time, and it makes me insane.   I’ve tried to explain to Jessie that Julie is struggling to find her identity, that she’s outgrowing the little kid label and she’s trying to assert her own identity, and Jessie is her biggest competition right now.

Marc is working a zillion hours a week, and frantically trying to cram in time at the synagogue, time with Sam and D&D, time at the gym, and time with the girls as well.   He’s happy, I think, overall, but I think he’s mostly tired.

I’m happy.  Tired too – because working, ferrying the kids, cleaning, homeschooling and doing the parenting thing is exhausting and I never actually feel like I’ve gotten everything done.  But overall, I’m happy.   The kids are all thriving, and healthy.  I’m not sure I’ll ever adjust to Sam’s accident or be okay with the fact that my son is legally blind, but I never lose sight of the fact that he could have lost so much more.  He could have died.  He could have cognitive impairments, or personality changes, or been paralyzed.  None of those things happened.  In the end, that’s what matters.

So life is a little more complicated than it was before, and we’ve got a little more sadness and challenge, but we’re all still standing.

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