Yesterday I didn't post anything, but I wrote two things that I'm dissatisfied with so I thought I would give them a rest instead of continuing to be frustrated. When I picked my youngest daughter up from school she came up to me and said: "Food". She had packed a salad and an apple for lunch and she was so hungry that she was shaky and told me she felt like she was going to faint. We found a bag of chips in the kitchen and I watched the tears subside as she ate the greasy sour cream and onion flavored chips. Food is a problem at our house. There were things that she could have taken, but didn't. The day before that the majority of her lunch came back because she wasn't hungry. I don't know what to do with someone like this, but I talked to her about enough food and mentioned that you can always pack more and bring whatever you don't eat back home at the end of the day.

Last night I had an allergy attack. I was in bed sneezing and sniffling, my nose was sore from dripping, my body hurt, and this morning when I woke up I felt as if I hadn't slept at all. The doctor's office called today to ask if I was going to proceed with the testing that they're recommending. We got a check from part of a class action lawsuit which was very nice, but doesn't come close to covering braces, dental work, and this type of an expenditure. I'm sick of being sick, but I'm not really confident that people are going to do anything with me after they hand me a diagnosis other than tell me that this kind of thing doesn't have a cure and it's a matter of managing it. That's probably the exactly wrong mindset to have, but I'm having a terrible day and I'm frustrated that I've spent so much money and wasted so much time seeing other people who haven't made my life any easier or better.

The Perfect Health Diet arrived the other day. I haven't had a chance to read it yet, but it recommends cutting out all grains and legumes, and right now I'm just not up to tackling another new diet. I had an apple with raisins and walnuts for breakfast. I'm having spaghetti squash with steamed spinach and parsnips for lunch. I'm freezing cold and beyond tired despite the amount of time I've spent in bed and today I'm just going to let myself not worry about too much. The dishes on the counter will get done when I get to them. I should probably take a bath or a shower, but even that seems like a lot of work. My husband drove me to my chiropractic appointment, I had contemplated cancelling it, and had I been home alone I probably would have just stayed in bed. I feel bad that the girls have a mom like this, and I'm guessing that the weather has something to do with the way I feel which is too bad as winter is long and cold in Wisconsin. 

Today's list is top ten things I love about my kids:

1. I love how tough they are. Whether it's a ruptured ear drum that's leaking bloody fluid, osteomyletitis, cryptosporidium, or needing stitches, my kids are tough. It's kind of amazing how high their tolerance for physical pain is and it makes me sad to think about what they've had to endure as very small and fragile children who didn't get the best start in life through no fault of their own. I remember a doctor telling us that we couldn't believe my daughter wasn't screaming her head off when they found a severely infected throat and ears. As babies my kids quit eating and sleeping and they were fussier, but ear infections are very painful and I love that they battle on their own so well.

2. I love how creative my children are. They make up nicknames for themselves and us. They joke around, one year they made my inlaws a cookbook that included directions such as: make steak. They used the back of a booklet that had babyish material printed on the front and presented their homemade gift with pride. Another year they gave a Bucks fan part of an actual antler from a real deer that they had found on the side of the road. They write well, and sometimes they make a mess that I don't appreciate, but no one can deny that they are very creative given limited resources.

3. My children are generous. This summer my youngest gave a girlfriend of hers twenty dollars of her own money as a present. Regardless of whatever other challenges I have with them, I will always be grateful that my children share and are not stingy.

4. My children are curious. They want to know what's going on in the world around them. My oldest went to camp with a friend this summer and when she came back the parents who had taken her said that she wanted to do everything. She came back with a fever, but hadn't complained about being ill or not feeling well, and she won hearts with a performance on stage where she sang a song without fear of the audience.

5. My children still hug and kiss me. Sometimes the three of us snuggle in bed together. My youngest is more affectionate and empathetic than my oldest, but my children are thirteen and eleven and every couple of days I have one of them on my lap while we talk or just hang out because sometimes life is tough and you just need a hug.

6. My children read. Sometimes they read when they should be doing other things, but they also read for school and they'll read a wide variety of material which makes me happy for them. My oldest has read her literature book and her social studies book. My youngest is now into Harry Potter and she reads easier books too, but last night at the Parent Teacher conferences her teacher said that her as a reader made her stand out from the other kids. She sobbed on her way to the dentist after finishing Where the Red Fern Grows, and we had a nice conversation about what books like that can teach us about death and dying.

7. My kids are funny. They both have their own sense of humor and sometimes I sit back in amazement at the things they come up with. My youngest has dressed up in costumes pretending to be mountain men and colored sheets of paper to resemble furs, lumber, or other goods that could be traded. My oldest did a presentation on the Donner Party and it was funny to hear her talk about the past and have an appreciation for humor as a way to cope with some very hard and desparate times. Both girls can be too silly, but I'm often too servere so it probably is good for both of us to have each other.

8. My kids roll with a lot of things. They might complain, but they also kind of acccept that their mom might suddenly do just about anything with their diets and they adapt quickly to the new level of detestedness. My children eat very little processed foods here at home, away from home is another story, but they've had to come to terms with change, and my oldest is better about this than my youngest, but now they have accepted that change in diet is the norm around here.

9. My girls are beautiful. It isn't the way that they look, it's the way that they care for others. They can both be so sweet and helpful, we've been out to eat and people have complimented us on their behavior. I see the bad far too often and need reminders of how sensitive their little souls are. They took excellent care of my sister's dog when he was visiting and they're eager to brighten people's days in their own ways.

10. My children still love me even though I haven't given them a lot of reasons to, but they still do. They're very often disappointed when I say that I'm too tired to take them places, I'm not the fun mom who does arts and crafts with them, I sometimes cook with them, but that's not as often as they'd like, and they aren't allowed to have a lot of the things that normal kids have so cooking here is not like cooking at other people's homes where they put together gingerbread houses or bake cookies. I yell at my kids, I get angry, I didn't know the health conditions that I had before we had children, so we're very fortunate to have the girls that we do. Despite some very bleak times the girls still come to me and tell me that they love me, frequently out of the blue and I hope that they know that I love them too, no matter what.

Until next time,


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