I am visiting family. The people I am visiting this week are strangers to me. Thy ar my father’s family, and sinc I never really knew him, I don’t really know them. So far, my cousin and I get along very well – like the brother I never had. My aunt is not as overbearing as I expected her to be. My uncle tells stories about my pawpaw. It’s nice to be reminded that othr people thought he was the great man I thought he was. My other aunt is unfiltered when speaking her mind and does so with very little refinement. My grandma – I don’t know yet. She’s hard to get a feel for, but her skin looks like tissue paper was glued over her actual skin, leaving wrinkles in strang places. I like my cousin the best, as I expected I would. Right now, my uncle would be second. For some reason, I just feel more at ease with him. We’ll see what th rest of the week brings, but I’m not scared to stay any more.
when someone calls me on falling behind in communication, i almost automatically respond “it’s just a busy time of year, it’ll slow down soon”. i’ve come to realize that this is probably the biggest lie i tell, and i tell it on a regular basis. the funny thing is that though my life has been incredibly busy, there’s not really a lot to share here. however, i couldn’t pass up this gem.
as a music teacher, parent, daughter, sister, friend and wife (though a distant one of those), my mind and body are constantly pulled in many different directions. yesterday, i finished work about an hour earlier than usual. i came home and relaxed with my baby until my husband called to say he was on his way home. we decided to meet for dinner and i rushed to get the baby presentable and myself ready for a concert. we flew out the door and had dinner at a local establishment. i left from there and went straight to the school. while i set up sound equipment, i had students furiously folding programs and warming up. at 7:00 on the dot, we walked into gym for performance only to realize that the sound system was NOT working. 10 minutes later, problem solved, concert underway. this is our pops concert and i don’t conduct a lot. in fact, i was only conducting the very last piece of this concert. so, i sat happily behind the sound board listening to my kids and reveling in the fact that they had somehow managed to pull their groups together just in time to give a good performance. at one point during the 2nd song, i looked down to adjust mics and noticed that my shirt looked strange. i looked again and then realized that it was on inside out. i wondered quickly if there would be time for me to sneak out and turn it right side out, but realized just as quickly that there was no way. then, i also realized the downfall of my new, super-cute haircut – it was too short to cover the tag that was so obviously attached to my shirt just below the collar. so, i did what i had to do. when it was time for the last song, i stepped in front of my choir and their parents, stood tall and conducted as if nothing was wrong. when we were striking the stage, i looked at my kids and asked how many of them knew my shirt was on inside out before the concert started and didn’t tell me. they tried to hide giggles. stinkin’ kids.
*notice – i am writing this post at 10:30pm after a VERY long day. it may not make sense at all.*
tomorrow will be the last show of this week. today i played 3 shows. 2 on clarinet and alto sax and 1 on bassoon. i am exhausted, but exhilarated at the same time. i played well today. i am playing alto sax (something i have never been very good at) reasonably well. and tonight, our orchestra director actually complimented my tone – twice! he wanted to know what i did differently tonight that made me sound so good! tonight, i was in the moment. i didn’t chit chat or let my mind wander. i was all there. and it was amazing! too bad the next orchestra show isn’t until OCTOBER. summer band, here i come!
the other music teachers in the county and i have affectionately dubbed this week hell week. it’s kinda like hollywood week on idol, except there’s no promise of fame and fortune at the end of the road and we can’t send the loosers home. here is just a sampling of the musical events happening in the county this week:
- HONK! – produced by a local high school – 8 showings total
- SHINDIG! – a musical review produced by a different local high school – at least 5 showings
- Romantic Classics – a guest artist concert produced by the local college
- Java and Jive – a festival of music and coffee in downtown
- Jr. High and High School Band Large Group Festival
- Dead Composers’ Society Concert
there are a sprinkling of other things, but good golly. i’m involved in the pit for HONK! and i’m playing for romantic classics (both have a show on friday night). my friend (who also happens to be a housemate) is taking jr. high and high school bands to festival. i have a friend playing at the java and jive and another one playing at the dead composers’ show. if you don’t hear from me for a few days, don’t fear. i’ll be back when i’ve recouperated.
when a child asks a question with an obvious answer, many people balk at them. so why then, is it ok for administration to ask silly questions and we are supposed to answer them with the utmost respect? take yesterday as an example:
i am in the office talking to the secretary about calendar events for may. it is the middle of first hour (literally the middle, 1st hour starts at 8:30 and ends ant 9:25, the time now is 9). my principal walks out of his office, looks at me and asks, very seriously i might add, “are you prepping now?”. i looked at him and thought before i spoke. if i hadn’t thought, my answer would have come out something like this “nah, i’ve left my kids in my classroom unsupervised at the opposite end of the building to come down here and talk to the secretary about putting events on next month’s calendar”. instead, i just said “yeah” with a tone that had to imply that i thought he was crazy for asking. then, he asked me what i was doing with my class during second hour. really, i teach CHOIR. what did he think my answer was gonna be? with an even more incredulous look on my face, i replied “singing”. he then said that he’d be stopping by to observe since he hadn’t done that all year (which he didn’t end up doing, oh well). can someone tell me why he didn’t just ask if today was a good day to come and observe my room? seems like that would have been an easier way to accomplish his goal.
all you have to do is read this and you’ll know why.
i don’t blog about my personal life much. i try to keep my business as my business, but right now, there are just to many pieces for me to keep holding them all together.
my huband and i have been married for almost 3 years, together for 8 1/2 years and i’ve known him for 17 years. we are comfortable with each other because we know everything there is to know about each other. we are both scared to death of being alone. we are not happy. i’m an easy-going, fun-loving kind of person (at least most of the time). he is angry and pessimistic. i’ve told him before that i wasn’t happy. he always glosses over it. waits on me hand a foot for a couple of weeks. this time, i won’t let him gloss over it. i’ve been sleeping on the couch for about 2 weeks. he hasn’t yelled or screamed or thrown anything, and he seems to be exhibiting some concern for me, but for how long this time? i’ve been to this spot before. i’ve gotten caught up in his ‘reform’ and slid back into comfortable, only for things to return to the way they were. i won’t do it again. i’m tired of losing myself to accomodate him. i’m tired of being his reason for everything, and his outlet for everthing. we fight all. the. time. about everything. and i’m done. just when he appears ready to do something about it. which makes me feel incredibly guilty. but, i can’t live under the cloud of wondering when it’s going to go back to the old way. i can’t be constantly wondering when throwing things is going to turn into throwing things at me. when pulling back his hand and stopping before he swings will turn into him not being able to stop. will my daughter grow up learning to tiptoe to keep from pissing daddy off like i had to. those questions are too much for me to stay.
then, there’s the matter of my professional life. our state requires that you pass a 3-part dossier in order to move from a provisional teaching lisence to a level-2 lisence. you must do this before june 30th of your 5th year in order to retain your lisence. i have passed all but 1/2 of one section. since the state restructured submission windows this year, there is not another submission before june 30. as of this moment, they have denied my appeal for an extension (i had to appeal due to the fact that the online submission company couldn’t get their sh1t together long enough to answer my e-mails and send me a way to get my password). so now, i teach for 30 more days knowing that i will not be allowed to do what i love effective june 30 (at least not in this state, and moving causes a whole nother set of problems with custody and such). i am distraught. i am in despair. i feel like everything is falling apart and all i can do is stand back and watch it crumble. if any of you are still reading by this point, all i can say is thanks for listening and hopefully i haven’t ruined your day.