Tuesday, February 20, 2007

On My Own

Alan departed yesterday and so today I am flying solo. Since the morning time is usually my best time of the day, I got up, started my/our morning routine (pack the nutritious lunch, try to get her to eat a decent breakfast) and it all went rather smoothly. I told Sofie that today was going to be a "not so cold day" so she was all excited and wanted to wear a short sleeved shirt and shorts. I nixed the shorts (it is February, for goodness sakes!!!). Big complaints. But she managed. Somehow, all my matching of socks when she was a toddler have not seemed to have had the right influence and her sock choices are often quite dramatic in terms of contrast to her outfits. Today was no exception. It is a first grader thing, this choosing of the clothes. And I just have to breathe through it, and let her go. Sometimes I have to intervene, however, like yesterday when she had a pair of striped leggings on and was about to "match" it to a striped top in a completely different color scheme. I could not, in good conscience and as homage to "What Not to Wear, Kids Edition", let her do it. I convinced her to wear the cute coordinating red top instead.

For the next couple of weeks, until Brenda arrives the evening of March 5th, I am on my own. Well, not exactly, Jamie has been in the wings, was over yesterday to go to the airport with us (which was good, because about that time, I kind of hit the wall on exhaustion again) and in general, share some dinners, etc. She has been also sharing in the Sofie drama. Sofie has been in full out drama brat mode some days, with tears, shouting, and a lot of oppositional behaviors. I know she is going through a hard time with all of this.

One of the frequent discussions (dare I say arguments?) we have is that it isn't fair that if I am not going to work, she has to go to school. Nothing I say to her is going to change her little opinion of that.

Homework and all that are still sure to incite a bit of drama, some tears, and require a whole lot of patience on our parts. Math (they give them these sheets with 100 problems, yesterday it was the 9's for addition). So she did the "easy ones" first, 9+0, 9+1, 9+2, etc. But then really balked at trying the harder stuff.

She is still struggling with reading too, although we are persisting in the nightly plan of her reading to us and then we read to her. Her snake obsession continues, the reading material of late has been her new book on King Cobras (which has a snake model embedded into the book, so she can learn all about the digestive system, etc.). She loves this. Not my idea of ideal bedtime reading, but if that is what she likes and wants, who am I to disagree?

I have made a short list of "projects" to try to tackle over the next couple of weeks. They include prepping for taxes (always a favorite), organizing the disaster I call my office, and attempting to clear out some of the huge amount of clutter and toys and junk from Sofie's room, without her really noticing that I have pared down some of her collections (stuffed animals, plastic whatevers from who knows where, all the stuff of a six year old's room). So far, I have only made a dent in the Sofie clean up but I have a week here at least to go.

I loved having Alan here, and Laurie and Maya before him. But I have to say, I am also looking forward to some days just alone. I need to have some time by myself (really by myself) to process the past two months and figure out what I need to move forward. Friends have suggested getting a therapist (I had one a year or so ago, I could go back to her I guess), but I am not sure that "getting to know you" thing with a new therapist is what I need. If there was someone who I clicked with, great, who had some experience dealing with people with potentially terminal illness, but the therapist "try outs" (for which I have to pay and then make the tough call) well, that doesn't thrill me. Am I resisting because I am afraid to go there?

Or is it after a variety of therapist experiences, some great, some a disaster, I am just gun shy?

This is my (very precious and possibly shorter) life we are talking about. I need the "right" person and I am not quite sure how to proceed.

More food for thought on this week on my own.

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