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Digestion, geology, sex, and academics

The spring smemester is well underway. Mike has enrolled this time as a full time student. This is the last of the first half of his BS. In June he will be able to enroll at a 'real' university instead of the City college system. City college has been quite good to us. I think he will miss it.

So he is taking three classes: a weird math-writing class, and geology, and physics 2. The first geology clas was yesterday. He had a field trip to look at rocks. Professor is very excited about rocks, and was pointing out delighful examples of slate and explaining the exact definition of cobblestones, (there is apparently a very precice meaning to the word,.) This would have been fine but we were also having a driving blizzard at the time, with dime sized snowflakes arriving horizontaly along with the kind of sleet that hurts the skin. Mike has decided that the professor is frighteningly excitable. Everything that gets learned seems to be tracked home.I look forward to long evenings talking about schist.

Daughter has joined an after school mural painting group. It is a good fit for her. We told her when she moved here that she could paint the walls of her room. (We will just slap some white primer over everything when we move out. We usually do that anyway-- easier than trying to clean the walls.) Her room is now covered with vines and flowers and birds and the handprints of her friends.

She has completed her internship, and more importantly passed it. It is a requirement at her school, along with a full course load in Junior year. Hers was not a good fit.

She passed her science class too, despite despising it. It was a survey biology class entirely directed at the digestive process.Since it had such a narrow focus they went into stupifying detail. I believe that the way bodies work should be taught to kids all the way along. Not just 'health' or sex-ed, (those too, of course,) but anatomy, and first aid, and nutrition and all. It blows me away what adults don't know about how they work. But even I am not sure that a whole semester on digesttion is the way to go. Especially when it is shouted into a void of ignorance about the rest of bodily workings. (Sex ed is an exception. Brooklyn is pretty good with that. Also her school hands out birth control with no questions asked. Daughter has a friend who has adopted a belt and suspenders approach and is using condoms, pill, and nuva-ring. She is a careful girl but ended up getting a terrible UTI because  she cannot talk to her mom, and they were super vigorous, and had nobody to tell her to have boyfriend wash first, and to also pee after. Girl ended up in the hospital.  I was able to relay this advice through daughter.)

All the rest of classes were no problem. Daughter staked out a position years ago that she did not read for fun. I was pretty heartbroken, but figured she would come around if I didn't poke. It was just her way of being different from the rest of us. She loved being read to, when little, and she did read Narnia and Harry Potter, and a few other books a year, but not anything like what I had thought it should be. This year was the year that she rediscovered reading for fun. I am still trying to stay out, not poke, not suggest, but just let it unfold for her.

My writing dropped off quite a lot during the time when all of us were home. I have gotten less able to close the world out. Finding your own world and work inside the mind is a skill. I need to keep it. I am unlikely to have my own silent tower anytime soon. Many, if not most art is made in and around the tumult of kids and families. Everyone from Mozart to Stephen King has had to work while people yelled about school lunches, and where-are-my-keys, and the landlordf knocking, and dog barking and the cat yakking up. (Not to compare myself to them in any other way of course, but it is some comfort.)

But Horatio and Archie and Kit, and all, are still there. Still speaking to me. And I have six months of quiet to write in. Plenty. Son is usually home but he is quiet as a cat. So we can hope.

Hope you are all well, out there beyond the snowy window light. I am grateful for each of you, I should say so more often.


( 11 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 3rd, 2015 07:46 pm (UTC)
Thank you for giving a window on to your world. I enjoyed hearing about it.

We had some years when Hubby was working on his Master's, then oldest two were at college and I said "Hey, what about me??" So Hubby babysat 3 nights a week while I went back to college!! I graduated with my second oldest!!

I laughed out loud when you spoke of "long evenings talking about schist!!"

We,too, let youngest daughter 'decorate'; she still has a 'skiing scene" inside her white-walled former room. One of my sons has an elaborate dragon on the ceiling of his former room.

A whole semester on digestion?? Strange. In 7th. grade, I remember a jar being passed around for each student to spit into, and then the teacher adding a bit of food and letting us watch the digestion inside a jar!! Kind of gross and fascinating at the same time!!

My kids all got "sex Ed " in health class to a MUCH greater degree than I ever got!! But they seperated boys and girls at some point and taught boys about condoms and girls about preventing pregnancy and I was glad I knew the "mechanics" were covered and I could work on the emotional, personal aspects of sex.

My kids took to reading very young (several read before kindergarten) just because we as parents were REALLY into books, and the library was our chief 'entertainment' place after playgrounds.

It's been a trying time, with all the snow. Even with a snowblower and a small driveway, shoveling and cleaning off cars is exhausting!

Thanks for your kind words of gratefulness! I am glad for you posts and sharing!! Enjoy today's sunshine!!
Feb. 3rd, 2015 10:14 pm (UTC)
This morning our car was entirely covered in ice. Took ages to get the door open with applications of water from tea-kettle and much profanity! Daughter was late to school.

We had no winter at all until just a few weeks ago. Now we are having it all at once!

I am probably going to go back to school at some point. But right now I am using the time in some other ways.
Feb. 4th, 2015 10:57 am (UTC)
Some people are not born readers. My middle girl did English A level and 'read' all the texts as audio books. It worked for her. :)
Feb. 4th, 2015 04:06 pm (UTC)
Wow! I always wanted to be able to paint my walls (and ceiling!), but my parents never let me. Now that I'm an adult and technically could (I live in an apartment), the idea of repainting over it before I move seemed like too much work. I compromised with wall decals like this.

It's great that you let her!
Feb. 4th, 2015 11:20 pm (UTC)
When she was in grade school, my daughter decided she wanted her room painted. She chose the colors and figured out a design, one based somewhat on a circuit board. I did some of the painting and helped mask off for the design. Just took a peak, and quite honestly it came out pretty neat.
Feb. 7th, 2015 06:33 pm (UTC)
I don't comment much, but I do enjoy reading about your life. Sending reciprocal sunshine-enjoying thoughts in your direction.
Feb. 8th, 2015 09:18 pm (UTC)
Thank you for letting me know. (Waves at you.)
Feb. 8th, 2015 12:55 am (UTC)
Great to hear that M & C are getting on well with their studies :)

Professor is very excited about rocks
I never studied much geology myself, but working in archaeology I met a fair few geologists. I like rocks, my house is full of little bowls of them, and I like people who get excited about rocks.

and to also pee after
Always, always, always.

But Horatio and Archie and Kit, and all, are still there. Still speaking to me.
I'm very glad they are still speaking to you :) They are still speaking to me too (well Archie and Horatio are, Kit only speaks to me through you) but alas I rarely have time to capture their words now. Work is all encompassing these days.

Btw, did your birthday present ever arrive? I got a message saying it had been shipped on the 19th of January. I hope it turns up!
Feb. 8th, 2015 03:20 pm (UTC)
Husband likes rocks too-- it was just the lack of visibility and the driving snow that put him off!

The lovely bracelet arrived Saturday. (Yesterday. It is right here in front of me now. I love it. I don't know if I ever told you that that poem reminds me of Archie. (Silly how many things remind me of him!) I think he would find it interesting. He knows about hope and the limits of hope. Emily put hers under less strain perhaps.

I love the idea of Kit speaking to you through me. He is a sweet boy.

Are you doing the two jobs now? (As well as the mom, partner, household stuff which never ever ends...) I picture you roaring off in 3 directions at once. The words to write are kept safe in your head. They are not going anywhere. They will be there when you have time to reach for them.

Feb. 9th, 2015 12:09 am (UTC)
Husband likes rocks too-- it was just the lack of visibility and the driving snow that put him off!
Ha! Reminds me of many of my archaeology field trips when I was a student. It's not a proper field trip unless you have horizontal sleet :}

I'm glad the bracelet arrived and you like it. It made me think of Archie too of course; he is the embodiment of hope. I had planned to get you one with a Marlowe quote but they didn't have any, however I thought this was would do nicely instead.

I love the idea of Kit speaking to you through me.
Of course he does! And he is teaching me so many things about a world I know little about.

Are you doing the two jobs now?
Not quite. I start the second job at the beginning of March, but I am working on two separate projects in my current job at the moment so it's all a bit mad.

The words to write are kept safe in your head. They are not going anywhere. They will be there when you have time to reach for them.
I hope so. I often worry they'll slip away before I can catch them.
Feb. 9th, 2015 03:19 pm (UTC)
Thank you for this update and yes I can imagine the scenes where the writer is seeking space and silence in vain = but I suspect a lot of that artist alone in front of the mountains and all that is a post Romantic 19th century view anyway and as you say plenty before that wrote, composed and painted in among the domestic chaos.

Here in the south west it has largely been a benign winter and it is another cold but lovely winter sun day with an almost cloudless sky= hope you have some small sins of Spring soon.
( 11 comments — Leave a comment )