As I stated yesterday, a year ago today we moved to southern Indiana, a town my hubby hates with a passion, and a school district whose academic standards are slightly lower than the school my children had attended since kindergarten.
After securing a storage unit and emptying the contents of a 27-foot U-Haul truck into it, we began the task of setting up beds for everyone. Hubby and I, of course, got the queen-size bed in what used to be his parents' room. K got his old room with the double bed. S took the couch, and the baby slept in the Pack-n-Play (portable playpen). We made another trip back to the old house and loaded kitchen stuff, clothing from my closet, and assorted odds and ends. Went to the neighbor's house to watch 'Heroes', then slept on air mattresses for one last night in the old house.
Tuesday, we convinced two of our three dogs to go with us, and returned south. Started unpacking and getting the dogs settled on chains in the unfenced backyard. Mom's china angels were in danger of being broken by the dogs and toddler, so as I unpacked boxes, I immediately refilled them! I also called the cable company and phone companies so we could watch TV and have our unlimited long distance and voice mail activated. I didn't worry about the internet; my computer was still in storage.
Wednesday, I enrolled the kids in school, and we made one final trip back for our Norwegian Elkhound. D had returned to work, and had been taking care of him at the house. I timed it so we were leaving the old neighborhood as the bus was arriving, and the kids were able to say one last goodbye to their friends.
Thursday, they started at their new schools, and discovered they were ahead of their studies, even having been out for nearly a week. My freshman had all but one credit for the sophomore level; most of his classes were with the upperclassmen. My daughter struggled at first; she was thrust immediately into a middle school situation, instead of being in the elementary school. But she soon adjusted, and was the first to make friends and discover the rollar-skating rink.
I called every daycare in town, but there were no openings for my toddler, not even for half a day. That first month I packed my mother-in-law's stuff; unpacked ours; sorted through closets, cabinets, and drawers; kept an eye on the baby so he wouldn't wander off; and patiently learned to deal with 3 angry people.
It's been a year; I've gotten everything organized the way I want it; the kids 'still don't know where' certain items are supposed to go, and they pick this up from their father, whose excuse is, "I'm gone all week; I don't know where the hell it goes..." and I can't just stop and fall apart, because that will accomplish absolutely nothing. If I had fallen apart last year, we would have all fallen apart, and the kids needed at least one strong parent to lean on.
I've managed to make a couple of friends, both by internet and through my children, and I've also marketed my first book at a local event and gotten a few books sold on consignment in 3 stores. My second book is due out in a few weeks, and I've a signing booked. I've also finished one WIP; worked solidly on another back in April (the muse left before I could finish it; I need to return to it and maybe outline the remaining chapters!); started 2 more, and want to finish #8 in the series.
My kids are back on the honor roll; my baby's in preschool and blossoming (even potty-trained...about 80%!); we've lost 2 dogs due to old age; and hubby's had somewhat of a good work season. And, we've managed to attend 2 county fairs, see a couple of movies, and treated the kids to almost daily trips to the pool during the summer.
Kelly asked me about knowing when my last straw was coming...it's just a feeling. And it's the overcautious part...I can sense a change coming, but I want everything in place when it arrives. I want to be able to prove I can support myself and my kids. The last time I reached the wall, I had someone to help me make the change; I don't have anyone this time. It would mean striking out on my own, and for my kids' sake, I don't want to hit that wall without the safety net of a job and a place to live. Does this make any sense?
Yes, I need a break. I thought I was getting one last spring at the Writer's Conference, but my van broke down and hubby ended up staying at the hotel with me (and interrupting my 'reunion' with 3 friends!). During the summer, my mother refused to take the baby when the older ones spent a week at her house. I did get 6 hours one day....it was heaven! And even this past weekend, the original plan was to ship the kids north, and only have to worry about keeping quiet so D could sleep on Friday. But, I ended up staying until Saturday, and bringing 2 kids home with me. So much for Fall Break. Don't know what the Christmas Break will bring...Maybe next spring/summer when I'm promoting the 2nd book I'll get some 'me' time? In the meantime, I've got my 4 hours every M-Th:) And when Jackie and I get well, we'll resume the 'Friday Writer's Lunch' again:) After Thanksgiving, when D is laid off for the winter, things will be tough, and then it will be decision time.
Apply to Healthy Families (or even Head Start)?
Go back to school in January?
Or just become a regular volunteer in W's classroom?
Everything will happen in God's time...not mine. I have to keep remembering that. The past several years have been blatantly obvious in hindsight!