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i got a job!

I confess, I have been a stay-at-home mom for 20 years. I have been very blessed to have that opportunity. My husband has always earned enough money to support our family. We have debt, sure. But, in theory, it is a manageable amount of debt. I personally think all debt is unmanageable, but most folks disagree.

Anyway, having lost our van over the summer and having to take on a car note that was unexpected pushed our manageable debt to nearly unmanageable. So, I decided to get a job to help out.

I am now the not-so-proud owner of a stocking position at Wal-Mart. I worked my first shift overnight Thur/Fri. I have my second shift tonight (Fri/Sat). The work is not difficult or complex. But it is physically demanding. When I left my first shift, I was reduced to a slow, limping hobble. My feet were so sore and tender! The floors are completely concrete. Very unfriendly for standing and walking for 8 hours.

I also had, and really still have, an all-over body ache that is bone deep. I have led a sedentary life being at home all the time. Lifting boxes and moving boxes and unpacking hundreds of canned and jarred goods is tiring. I had to do a lot of bending and squating too. My knees are very unhappy with me.

But, I think I can do it. I just have to force myself to power through the first couple weeks. I think after two or three weeks, my body will have acclimated to this sort of stuff.

I think I can I think I can I think I can

academic pressure

Hello! I come seeking advice from my dearest devoted followers!

In my household, I have tried to never place emphasis on actual academic success via the public school grading system. I am really only familiar with the way Georgia handles things. Georgia receives extra money, or adequate moneys, based on standardized test scores. So the public schools in Georgia strongly encourage students to do well on standardized tests. To the point of freaking the children out about failing their actual grade level if their test scores are not up to par. My children have been blessed with enough innate brain activity to easily pass the standardized tests without difficulty. However, the hyper-pressurized situation with the school’s approach to testing still has caused unnecessary stress on my children. I try to alleviate that, but apparently am only somewhat successful.

In our home, the approach I use toward school work and grading is this: If you complete all of the assignments that your teachers give to you, then whatever grades are the result will always be acceptable. The children will never be punished or lectured or disgraced in any way for making less than A’s in any class as long as the assignments have been handed in. My children receive a minimal punishment as an incentive to always turn in their work. I feel that we are very liberal with our children’s access to electronic entertainment. They are allowed nearly unlimited playtime on any electronics they choose as long as their school work is complete. Computer time, hand-held console time, television viewing time, larger console time; whatever they like to play or watch is allowed for all of their after-school time as long as homework is finished. If they receive a Zero, a score for an assignment not handed in, they receive one day of complete electronics restriction. During that day, they must complete the assignment they missed and turn it in at school the next school day. One day of restriction for each Zero received.

At least 90% of the time, they score a passing mark on any assignment they actually complete. I have never worried about the grades they receive. They are intelligent and our school system is a low ranked one. There is so little chance that they will do poorly in a class due to not understanding the material as to say that it is virtually impossible.

My daughter (and my son actually) is in advanced level classes for her grade. In her Math class she is actually working at an accelerated level which is considered above the advanced level. I have never placed emphasis on grades. Only on work completion. And yet, she is extremely stressed about school. She feels such school pressure that it is contributing to her desire to self-harm. I suspect she is a “type A” personality. A person who seems to be driven extra hard from within to succeed at a higher level than average people.

I need help in reducing her pressure. I need help in convincing her that her accomplishments are enough and wonderful and more than satisfactory already. I need help relieving her innate need to drive herself academically to the point that it is endangering her health. What am I doing wrong?

I know some of my followers are students. I know many of my followers are past students. I need advice from you all in helping my daughter feel less academic stress. I thought that I was not putting undue pressure on her. but maybe I am. And I know she is putting undue pressure on herself. I would like her to feel less intense about school while still feeling motivated to succeed at her own best level.

Please. Everyone who reads this, feel free to offer me any words of advice. I will read and take into consideration every response. Do not think that your particular thoughts will be unhelpful. Every single experience that you have had is different than my own, and so may help me find a point of connection with my daughter that I am currently not having.

Thank you so much!

my kids are smart!

My daughter is 12. She’ll be 13 in November. She has been invited to take the SAT in December. Alongside high school students who are taking it for college entrance.

I’m not sure she has taken enough Math for this test, but she seems excited and eager to do it. So, we’re going to let her. We won’t have her scores until April. Is that kind of turn around time normal now??

Sh was offered the choice of SAT or ACT. My husband says East Coast schools use SAT the most and West Coast ones use ACT more. Since we’re on the East Coast, he recommended she take that one.

i am so depressed

The meds I’ve been taking for the depression and the bi-polar were working better in the summer.

Vacation always stresses me and leaves me down after. I had Dragon*Con and then the Orlando trip pretty freaking close together, so no true recovery time.

My van was wrecked in the summer. I have a new (used) car and that’s lovely. BUT adult responsibility means I can’t collect the pay-off for the van until I can produce the title. Which I can not find anywhere. In theory, we can get a new one. But I can’t even remember who we had the loan from it was so long ago. I hate everything, but especially dealing with people i don’t know and making phone calls and being a grown up.

And now there is this business with the cutting. My daughter is 12. She has so many many cuts on her abdomen, her arms and her thighs. She used a pretty clean and sharp pair of scissors to make the cuts. They seem to all be very shallow and slightly scabbed. But it is still so much. And so overwhelming for me! I KNOW it is really all about her. I know that. And I am being as loving and supportive as I can be without alienating her. But now, I have to make phone calls and find a therapist. I have to vet folks I don’t know and find someone who can help her without triggering her or belittling her. Not all therapists are the same. Someone old-school might not understand the cutting thing. So, this is a huge responsibility for me. I have to do the exact right thing for my child. She is the mos important part and I am failing because she needs from me something that is super hard for me to give.

So, I just feel overwhelmed by everything. My house is a disaster zone. Nothing is really clean. Dinner needs ,making. Laundry need folding. Dishes need washing. Vacuuming needs to happen. Toilets need cleaning. Showers need scrubbing. Children need hugging. Husbands need loving. And all I want to do is reblog and cry and sleep.

help please

found out today that my 12 y.o. has started cutting. i am gonna really need some help with this.

anyone? please

Cute Puppy Love

If you’ve been visiting this blog regularly you may have realized that this is one of my  favorite songs and every time I hear it I just find it even more beautiful than before.

Check this version that Sarah McLachlan performed with Pink! OMG!

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I believe that each person is in full and total autonomous control of their own body. No one should ever have the right to touch your body without your express and informed consent. No one should ever even feel they are entitled to express an opinion on your body without you consenting. And no one should ever be allowed to make a decision about your body. EVER. Whether you are male or female or non-gendered or multi-gendered or child or adult or ancient. Your physical personhood is sacrosanct.