Monday, August 18, 2008

Lottery Ticket

Friends, let me tell you, God is good.

On the first day of school for teachers, we had a meeting and the PTO did door prizes. Darned if I didn't win a little black-and-white TV with a built-in radio... 5 inch screen and will be totally useless come February unless I drop a bunch of cash on a converter box, but the point here is, of course, I AM A WINNER.

And then today, the entire district met at one of the high schools for a kickoff and they did door prizes, too. Guess who was holding one of the lucky tickets and won $100 kizzash from a local credit union! Yep, it bears repeating: I AM A WINNER.

So, I think I'll go buy a lottery ticket on the first day of classes. What do you think? Could the Powerball be mine all mine? It might just be...

Actually, if you'll allow me to pour melted cheez all over you, I have already won the lottery. I have a loving husband, two precious children, good friends, a decent home, food, water, and shelter. I was hired to do exactly the job I wanted at exactly the school I wanted and I have just spent the afternoon meeting what promises to be an unbelievable group of students I'll have the honor of teaching and learning from this year. Really, sisters and brothers, say it with me this time because you know it's true: I AM A WINNER.

But I still might go get a ticket.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

I spent the day with my in-laws riding all over the Columbia metro looking for a house for them. Although I had a million other things to do to prep for school, not to mention around the house, it was great fun. I had forgotten how much fun it is to play realtor with clients who are comfortable, informed, and ready. I had no idea how much fun it would be with my relatives! Actually, Patty and I have played real estate together for years - we both have a thing for snooping around new construction and playing house - imagining our stuff in them, talking trash about the builders and designers and architects and their often ridiculous choices.

Anyway, I suppose the big news flash here is that my husband's folks are strongly considering a move here - so strongly that Nana didn't care that our house would not be even CLOSE to clean enough for Nana to visit this weekend! Pat would love to be on the water, but he doesn't want to spend that much, given that he'll be carrying two mortgages for a while (who knows how long their house in Charleston will take to sell! It's gorgeous, but HUGE and PRICEY and there's a Bush in the White House still...). Primarily, he wants to be in a courtyard home - nice brick wall in back, little tiny yard, no maintenance. He realizes that he can no longer do the work, he knows his time is limited and that Patty needs to be somewhere she can be happy and feel safe and that SHE won't have to maintain either. They both need one level, as he is always at risk of stroke and she is bound to have another back surgery one day. BUT, it has to have class and all the luxuries they have in their current home - granite and hardwoods and moulding, oh my!

Good day in fantasyland. And Hudson's Smokehouse for dinner. MMMMMMM.

We will likely meet with a builder this morning. I've been up since 6:30, even though we were up past midnight last night. I guess my body is prepping for school! Kori is going home with the Hayses for the next three days and I have to pack her stuff. Shouldn't take long since the child has lived out of her suitcase all summer! Once the Hayses leave, we'll be tackling laundry and cleaning and all those things I haven't been officially cleared to do by the doc yet, but my scabs are off the sutures and I figure anything goes at that point.

At some point today, I am probably going to do some reflecting on the meetings we had at school Thursday and Friday. I think that will help me to grow as a result of my experiences as a faculty member at OPES and as a person. Sorry, folks - as much as I think you would like to read about my mundane little teacher life, that blog is old-school - we call it a JOURNAL. Your people might have called it a diary. Whatever - it's a handwritten notebook because I am not sure how much I want to be open about those reflections... Anyway, if there's an occasional goodie, I'll share it. Okay?

We have meetings all morning and Pioneer Preview from 2-5 (that's a meet-the-teacher kind of thang). My classroom is tidy, if not yet ready, and I am completely ready to meet the kids and their parents, but I do not have any of the stuff ready yet that I want to share with them. I guess I should go back up to TODAY and add that - get Pioneer Preview Stuff Ready.

I cannot wait to have my kids again! My best teacher friend and I had a convo yesterday that went sort of like this...
Her: I'm heading over to the school. You coming?
Me: Urg. No, and I am soooo jealous. What does it mean that I would rather spend the entire Saturday at school in my room than riding around in the inlaws' Lexus looking at high-end houses?
Her: It means you are a better teacher than you are a realtor.

It was just what I needed to hear.

So, tomorrow, I need to spend time in my room at school, thinking, planning, greeting, and welcoming. I totally get off on all of that. It will be a goooood day.

Also tomorrow, I need to pay bills, call the benefits lady, make sure Austin is entertained, work on the playroom, enroll in online real estate license renewal courses (so I can get my referral fees from my realtorboss, can I get a hellyeah!), and plan meals for the week. Eating at home - a new and admirable goal at our house!

And tomorrow would have been Daddy's 75th birthday. I don't need to set aside time for this, but tomorrow I imagine he'll sneak up on me at some point and I'll let myself weep a little. My Pokey. My Poppa. My Daddy. Thank God I'll be so busy tomorrow!

More soon, dear readers and friends. It always catches me off guard when people tell me they are reading my blog... that's what is intriguing about this whole process - you have no idea who knows your dirt and who has shared it with whom. Forces me to choose my words, I guess! Enjoy.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

NCSSM 20 year reunion blurb

Most of you know that I went to a nerd school for my junior and senior years in high school (The North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics), and our 20-year reunion is fast approaching. Two of our alumni (who ultimately married each other) have taken on the project of compiling a reunion book. They sent us a template for our blurbs - we could write, draw, post photos, whatever. This is what I finally came up with. Thought you, my dear friends and readers, might want to take a peek. Enjoy.

So here’s what’s crazy to me when I think about this 20-year reunion thing. We’ve been away from NCSSM ten times as long as we were there – more, actually, if you calculate it in months instead of years. I’ve lived 54% of my life post-nerd-school. Other than my recent and pathetic addiction to facebook and the reconnects that has brought about, I’ve kept in frequent contact with fewer than half a dozen former unicorns. But when I think about my most life-changing experiences, my most satisfying life choices, and my collection of fond and entertaining memories, that minute or two that went by sandwiched between Club and Broad always makes the top ten list.

Now for lack of time, confidence, or whatever, I don’t even know where to begin to sum up my “grown-up” years. I mean, I was not even 17 when we graduated – just a baby. I felt so worldly compared to my South Brunswick peers but recognized that I was still remarkably na├»ve. Honestly, it’s still like that – I’ve lived a pleasantly sheltered life. I’ve experienced plenty for me and I imagine and pray that I will have plenty more time to do the rest. The hard times haven’t been impossible. The good times have been great. I’m ever grateful for all the just-kinda-there-and-going-through-the motions times.

I remember sitting in the parking lot at Kroger one day this year listening to some geekin’ show on NPR about writing six-word memoirs – some Hemingway legend, some magazine collected a bunch – I think it’s a book now. Anyway, I was intrigued, amused, inspired. So in that spirit, to tell you what my last 20 years have been like, I’ll share with you some of my own six-word memoirs. Most of them are really quotes that encompass one of my favorite stories or memories, and if you hunt me down, I’ll gladly tell you the whole thing.

Who’s that cute boy studying Russian?

Could spend every summer at camp.

Snow in the mountains – nothing better.

Can I leave her my socks?

Ohmygod, I am having a baby!

What I want? I want somefing!

Oops. Forgot to carry the one.

Arkansas had neither pestilence nor famine.

Television? Family value! Pays the bills!

Too few liberals in my neighborhood.

Stay-at-home moms rarely do.

Hysterectomy is a girl’s best friend.

Momma, Daddy, dog died. Crappy year.

Teacher again. Happy. God is good.

Saturday, August 2, 2008


Let the celebrating commence.

The elusive poo

If you're reading this, you know I'm one who will talk about anything - at great lengths, usually - and I know you are prepared for a post such as this.

I have never wanted to poo so much in my life.

Now really, I alluded to the need for poo in my last post, but I'm talking 72 hours post-op and nothing but wind. Don't want to take anything for pain (which is really nothing more than discomfort at this point) because I don't want to plug up the pipes any more than they already are. Don't want to overdo it on the stool softeners because, well, I don't want to "over-doo." I am obsessing about this, because I happen to know that the old-school way for docs to know it was time to release a patient was when their bowels moved. If this had been even a decade ago, I'd still be in the hospital, spry as anything but awaiting a good poo. Granted, they would likely have given me a more powerful lube than the OTC colace I've been taking the minimum dose of...

And isn't it just weird how the state of our bowels so often reflects the state of our lives? Right now I am in a holding pattern - can't really put forth a lot of effort to do the things I want and need to get done because I am "resting" - but can't really rest because there is so much I need to get done. Then again, there are times that I am busy busy busy and my bowels are, too. Coincidence? I think not.

How I have three days of real food in me with no flushable evidence is beyond me - I do not get how those of you who are perpetually constipated do it. And you know what else strikes me as odd? You, my nearest and dearest friends and you, the acquaintances I've kept along the way, are still reading about my dookie. Or lack thereof. What has your life come to?

Poo and sex are the things proper Southern ladies would never consider talking about. Guess I'm not a proper Southern lady. I figure they are two of the things most often on our minds, so why not make them fair game for discussion? I know each of you will be checking back here periodically KNOWING that I will have a celebratory post when the elusive poo arrives, and you'll secretly be hoping I'll go into great detail in my description of it.

But I won't. I promise. Or will I?

Hey, at least I'm not talking about my grief and woes. Or am I?

Lamentation for a missing poo:
Oh, gently moving bowel, how I miss thee.
Your plops, your surprisingly pleasant dumping sensations...
I long for the time when I could take you for granted.
Return to me, great links of waste,
So that I may once again know the pleasure of your passing,
Knowing that you will return to me with occasional rankness and shocking swiftness,
But always with the satisfaction of having spent time with you.
Oh, poo.

Okay, that was too random. Maybe the meds haven't quite worn off. Maybe I am just a freak. Maybe both.

I'll keep you posted. :)

Friday, August 1, 2008

Uterus? I don't need no stinkin' uterus!

Woohoo! It is day two post-op for me and I am currently NOT medicated at all, so I might as well get a few words out there before I need another Darvocet.

Okay, so I'm telling you, I needed this rest period. The great thing is, it isn't over yet! My body wants me to rest - my spirit needs it, and my abdomen demands it. Ahh, I look forward to napping more today.

The last thing I recall from Wednesday morning just before the surgery was the nice lady pushing vistaril or some other tasty drug in my iv and everything going all blurry. After that, I remember mumbling a little as they moved my bed upstairs (they warned me every time I'd feel a bump, going into or out of the elevator, and going into the room).

When I awoke a little more fully, I saw my beloved's face, mixed with concern and joy, there for me as always. I could have sworn I heard a voice saying "total vaginal hysterectomy" - which of course, is NOT what the doctor had ordered and which totally freaked me out, since I don't have the time to recover from such as that! I kept asking Jimmy, or least I thought I did, but he wouldn't answer me, which meant either a. it was true or b. I wasn't really asking it, but thinking it in my head. Turns out there had been a little mishap and Jimmy wanted the doctor to explain it to me. I was spilling blood from my iv site, so they had to check that out, but other than that, all went as planned. I am less one uterus, with cervix, tubes, and ovaries still intact. Sweet!

Now, if I could only go poo. Yeah, dear readers, I am anxiously awaiting my bowels moving. After Tuesday's enema experience, you'd think I could go for weeks without pooing again, but I know it is the one sure sign that everything is getting back to normal. I'll keep you posted, and I know you are anxious for word on that! :)

More soon. I might even try writing in my drug-induced state to see what I come up with - all the great artists do that, right? Maybe not, because by this time tomorrow, I'll probably just be taking ibuprofen. Super work, Dr. S!