Wednesday, August 27, 2008

So Proud

First, thank you for your good wishes yesterday. Update: my father-in-law came through surgery with flying colors. Around 4:00 this afternoon, he asked me to go get him a cheeseburger. :) Grandma is hanging on; I still don't expect this to be a long journey for her -- she's not able to eat -- but I'm hopeful that it's a peaceful one. We got my MIL to go and get a haircut and a short massage this afternoon.

I'm not sure if any of you not in the Eastern Time zone had an opportunity to watch the roll call vote for the Democratic nomination. The excitment of witnessing each of the states cast their votes for their nominee was electrifying. But watching the state representatives defer to each other, and finally, seeing Hillary Clinton call to suspend the rules of the convention and nominate Barack Obama by acclamation may have been the most powerful moment I've ever experienced in American politics. I don't care if it *was* staged. It was remarkable.

I also have to say that, despite the fact that our "historic moment" is about breaking the race barrier in the race for the presidency, I think this convention has been a story about women. Between Hillary Clinton's truly powerful orations last night and tonight, watching a woman preside over the convention in the person of Nancy Pelosi, and seeing the sheer number of women standing on that convention floor, representing their states, it's clear that this convention is just as much about women truly coming into their own in the determination of our leadership in this country.

It makes me proud and hopeful.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

If you can spare a hope and prayer tonight...

My intention this week was to write an account of my week off last week. I won't say "vacation" per se, as we didn't really go anywhere. But it was great to not be working. I took the girls down to the Columbus Zoo, which is really a remarkable place. Their lorikeet exhibit isn't appreciably different from the one in Cleveland, but as you can see, the lorikeets are a good deal more aggressive there.

It was a lot of fun.

Seriously. I was going to wax poetic about the joy of sleeping 8 hours a night and going to the pool, just because. Alas, that's not in the cards for tonight. Mopey McMoperson's Blog of Doom appears to be alive and well.

Tomorrow, my father-in-law will be having heart surgery to correct several issues. It's not a tremendously high-risk procedure, but it's heart surgery and it has us all worried.

Then, this morning, my mother-in-law called. Her mother, my husband's grandmother, moved in with them a couple months ago, as her health was failing. She improved dramatically for the first month or so. But in the last two weeks, she's been fussy: moody, inclined not to eat, a bit verbally abusive toward my mother-in-law. We've been a bit worried about dementia.

It wasn't her mind. It was her heart. When the doctor tested it this morning, it was pumping at less than 15% of what is should be. Her liver was shutting down. Her kidneys were failing. Her digestive system is not functioning. The doctor sent her directly to hospice.

My heart is breaking for my mother-in-law. This woman has been giving and giving of herself for the last several years; taking care of my father-in-law, taking care of her mother, helping out with K when we need it. She doesn't complain. She doesn't nag. And now she's facing losing her mother before the week is out, at the same time as she is facing carrying her husband through a tough rehab, while hoping and praying that he makes it to that point.

I know that I should be praying for the health of my father-in-law and S's grandmother. But my thoughts and prayers aren't going to make a difference for them. Grandma is going to pass. She's finally going to join her husband. And my father-in-law is going to come through this based on his own physical strength and fortitude.

My heart is focused on their caregiver. I want to wrap her in my arms and help hold her up. I don't know if she'll let me do that. But I can pray for her strength. And I can reassure her that she's doing a great job. Because she is.

If you have a good thought to spare, think about my mother-in-law, Irene, and send her a bit of strength. She could use it.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Yeah, so I kinda suck at this whole blog thing sometimes

Sorry I haven't posted in a long time. I'm sure all three of you have moved on by now. ;)

It's not that I don't have anything to say; quite to the contrary. It's just that lately I'm having trouble figuring out which of my somethings I should be saying and even more trouble trying to find time to articulate what I want to say.

So for now, let's just catch up...

First, a few updates:

1) Annie is much better. Turns out she had a mineral deficiency that was causing her to have seizures; the bleeding they found in her brain last time was from hitting the ground so hard. She's busy planning her daughter's wedding.

2) I am worried we might still lose control of the school. There's been some mis-management that I just don't think we can overcome without a merger partner. It's bumming me out, but we're gonna keep on keepin' on.

3) The event that the CEO tried to chew my hind end about went off beautifully. Like, people cried because it was so beautiful. So there! Nyah-nyahnny-boo-boo Dr. #2 Pencil.

Good stuff:

I got a chance, weekend before last, to attend one of the happiest weddings I've seen in a long time. Congratulations to AliThinks and AllanThinks! I also got to see some wonderful friends that I don't see anywhere near often enough. I wish I could have had a week there, instead of the two quick days I spent down there. I also got to see my best friend, Suzanne, who was my date for this event and put up with attending someone else's family reunion for the weekend. Thanks, Suz. I love you!

On Monday, I start this semester teaching a class that's been on my list of "classes I must teach some day" for a long time. Can. Not. Wait.

I'm off work this week. It's Fair Week here. I love Fair Week. I'll post some pictures later this week. Nothing else too big on the agenda. We put a new garage door on today, which was long overdue. While it wasn't any fun, it was satisfying.

Not so good stuff:

My girlfriend, Eva, got in a pretty serious car accident yesterday. Rolled her car over. Thank goodness, she wasn't hurt beyond being pretty banged up. And thank goodness the kids weren't in the car. But man, what a hassle for her and what a scare for her and for all of us!

I mention this, in part, because on Saturday, I was at Eva's house making draft projects to hand out as Christmas presents. Eva asked me about whether or not she should divorce her husband. They have two young kids. It's been a very rough couple years over there. (Case in point: he sees her accident yesterday as an enormous inconvenience to his plans for this week...)

"Let me tell you something," I told her. "When you divorce a man while you have young kids, he doesn't leave your life. You don't get to walk away clean. You don't get rid of his debts. He's still there. His baggage is still around. The only difference is that he doesn't love you anymore. It's not worth it, if you think you can work to make it not horrible until they're older."

I stopped, because I realized then that I could offer this advice so easily because there were times in my own marriage when I'd done this math. Thankfully, I'm not in that place now. But it saddened me. I always pictured marriage as a long-term partnership, and I'd just characterized it as something to be endured until she could get out.

Eh, back to another good thing. Won't dwell on the badness...

I'm on the couch right now, nestled between a snoring almost-eight-year-old and a snoring dog. It's very peaceful here and I'm very thankful for the good things in my life.