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Monday 2/8: A fresh work week

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Howdy all!!

It is hard to beat the really nice weekend we had here, even after missing out on the Super Bowl due to the problems with our cable provider. I feel bad for a couple of my sons who were really bummed over not getting to see the game. I called Mediacom and was told that there was an electricity problem where there feed is and they were working on it. Hmm, we still do not have any local channels or network TV here. Doggone that electric company who might not really have been the problem. It did start snowing yesterday and they predicted 5-9 inches. It snowed all night and we didn't get near the prediction because the sno is not falling really hard. However, it is still snowing nad hasn't stopped...and we have true winter weather conditions out. The prediction for the snowfall--of course, 5-9 inches.
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I had a good workout at the pool and they took measurements on my left shoulder today. I will start working on that in addition to my other work when I am at the warm pool. It will be nice to get it more comfortable. I also had an appointment with my counselor and we talked about the issues at work. He was pleased that I had taken the high road and avoided creating bad feelings or ill will. I also sent the email response as I was asked to by our HR guy. I kept it honest and antiseptic clean, void of opinions or feelings.

I have a lunch date with our parish nurse tomorrow, if the weather doesn't cancel school. It is fun to be able to spend time with friends and visit...and to stick with my program. Things are going okay so far this week. (Knock on wood!) I have some new books to read, "Thin for Life" by Anne Fletcher and "Low Carb Dieting for Dummies" by Katherine Chauncey. I joined the team with the same name last month and am hoping it will be a strong asset along with my current plan. I want to make good choices and I like having all of the available info out there. I started reading this book and may share things as I get going!! (After reading "The Spark." I am worried that any book about healthy living will not hold up for me.)
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FUNNYGRANNY71 2/9/2010 1:58PM

    I love reading your blogs. It sounds like you are doing great both physically and emotionally. Just hang in there and things will turn out all right.
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    We didn't end up getting anywhere near the predictions so maybe it will work out for you as well. We have had enough snow. LOL.

I hope the pool helps the shoulder.

And you have certain been terrific regarding the work issues. So mature and reasonable. They are really fortunate that you have taken the high road.

I love to read diet books and have read a ton. Although some are better than others I learned some helpful info from almost all of them. Enjoy.

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MTNGRL 2/9/2010 10:57AM

    Ahh, a nice warm pool. That sounds wonderful. I can dream, lol! I am watching my carbs too because of the diabetes but not going too low. Let us know how that works!

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JHADZHIA 2/9/2010 7:04AM

    I am glad you enjoyed the pool, I am so missing my water workouts along with everything else! You know, not having TV is not such a bad thing -maybe create some nice family time together???? Be careful with this low carb thing -remember you need carbs to burn fat while you exercise, and its the ONLY fuel your brain uses! Spark's recommendations of nutrient ratios really work and have helped a ton of people -can't argue with success!

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    So glad that you had a good workout in the pool. Sorry that you missed the SuperBowl. It was as good as any I have ever seen before. Hope that you have a great lunch tomorrow. Love, Dawn

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Saturday, 2/6--I love the weekend!!!!!!!

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Hi friends,

The title says it all. I went for lunch with my best friend--I ate fresh fruit and some chicken, brought a doggie bag home that my kids shared. I decided that I wanted to wear jeans though--and my daughter who helps me wasn't home, so my other daughter was trying to locate my clothing (I cannot get in bed and have slept in a recliner in our family room for well over 6 years now, since my first back surgery. Since I cannot store laundry in the family room and I don't walk around so competently, the kids help me to get what I need.) She brought me my favorite jeans and I got dressed, and as I walked to the car, they fell right off of me. Wow, we were late, so I wore them anyway, but it was silly. My friend and I giggled and talked about many absurd ways of dealing with the situation. The truth is that my big fat jeans need to go to Goodwill or someplace similar--I looked at them to see if I could try to take them in, but that doesn't look like a job for an amateur. I may just go with something with an elastic waist until I get to my goal, and then I will get some nice new jeans to be my favorites.

We are working hard on household cleaning, decluttering and repairs right now--at my insistence of course. The family room was on the agenda for the weekend and the furniture is rearranged and things are deep cleaned, but there is a lot left to put away yet. I had wanted to give them all tomorrow off to enjoy church and get ready for the big game, but we are going to have to finish up.

I called my ortho about the lingering, nasty pain in my shoulder--even after the injection. I misse dtheir return call because I was at therapy in the pool...and the nurse wants me to call and get into physical therapy. I am sure I told her where I would be if they called back, so I don't know if she forgot or if they want me to do something in addition to what I'm doing in the pool. I'll find out on Monday.

Have a wonderful remainder of the weekend. I plan to do the same.
Hugs all round,

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JENNYPOO45 2/8/2010 8:26PM

    thats good about the jeans.I thank Id make a pillow are somthing out of them.How have you been?
hugs jen

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    emoticonon those jeans!!!!!

I also love to read about decluttering!!

I hope that shoulder improves!!

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FUNNYGRANNY71 2/7/2010 4:14PM

    You must have been doing all the right things. I can still wear my old cothes afte 27 pounds lost, but I am also into some of my old clothes that were just too tight. I think you have done really well. I am so proud of you!
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MTNGRL 2/7/2010 3:00PM

    emoticon I bet it feels great to have those jeans be so big! Hope your doctor can help with the shoulder pain.

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SHELLPRO 2/7/2010 12:58AM

    LOL, I still remember the 1st time losing the pants happened to me! I did break down & have seamstress do a few items to tide me over till a pay check could cover some fitting styles. Can't have everyone singing 'Pants on the Ground' to the Teacher, can we? Good Luck with the Ortho and your shoulder, I still have issues with the right wrist and the Cyst hasn't stopped growing- I know when I was able to see my Chiropractor there was a lot better pain issues for me. Maybe check into that? Take Care! emoticon

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Thursday, 2/4 The Next Step

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Hi there,

I got to work today and checked my email to find out the meeting regarding the email was to be held today. I called our union president and he agreed to come. In the meantime, I got a lot of work done this morning before that. We held the meeting in the boss's office and the door was left open--so everybody got to see that there was a meeting nad I'm sure a couple of people even hung outside to listen. I was asked what I wanted to meet about ad I responded that it was the email I received with "concerns" that involved me. She printed her email up and we went through it one comment at a time. She had invited the HR guy to come nad he asked me to respond to the email in writing and he told her that he needed a copy of it. The issues of supervision of staff when I m not there really were downplayed and she took responsibility for handling that. As for their dissatisfaction with the sub, I am going to "get" to mentor him and he is going to have to come to me. He is going to have to observe me working and managing my students and then use the suggestions I have been given. Somebody is going to have to tell him htat they are complaining abouthis work and that is why this is being done this way--again, not my problem.

Finally, the HR guy knows that I cannot be the one to move all of the boxes and stuff and told her to set a target date for needing this done and that he will get maintenance to help with that work. It is so nice to be treated with a bit of dignity. She said that she included all of that stuff in the email to give me "a head's up." Hmm, when I am giving someone a heads up, I tell them directly that that is what I am doing.

I am satisfied with the way this went and am glad to know that it has been handled respectfully. I don't think I have more than one problem and that is my boss. I am not sure why she needs to treat me in such an ugly way, but with the changes coming due to budget cuts I don't expect to have this issue for another school year. I am not sure how much longer I'll be only working half-days, that depends on my rehab and strengthening. I will do a good days work for a day's wages and I will continue to keep my students a priority. The rest of this will go the way they choose, but I will not roll over and be dumped on daily. I am far better than that.

On a different note, after spending the greatest part of my adult life pregnant or post partum, it is hard to believe that our youngest child is 12 years old today. His name is Micah and I was 42 when he was born by a scheduled c-section. When he and his dad get home from an errand, we are going to go get his cake and some other groceries along with his choice of his birthday dinner. He seemed to be really pleased with his birthday gifts--mostly toys for probably the last year ever. I am a bit blue thinking about him moving into the adult world soon. He will be at the junior high in the fall and will also start confirmation. He won't have recess and the same type of silly times anymore, but will be starting to think about girls and driving and going out with friends. This is a milestone in my life and although it is right and so, I need to come to grips with this change that has been coming for the past 12 years.

No pool today, so I'm going to exercise, stretch and strengthen here tonight. I managed our last birthday party without a problem and I am expecting to enjoy singing and candles without eating the sweets. Everything is the same and different too.

Thanks for being my true friends and needed support during the rocky moments. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FUNNYGRANNY71 2/5/2010 8:05PM

    Sylvia, I am so glad that you finally could talk to someone about the problems you had been having and getting someone to listen to you and even to cooperate. I do hope things get even better for you because I know how you felt. Keep up the good work!!!

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SHELLPRO 2/5/2010 4:27PM

    I'm glad to hear that someone 'really' listened and that you feel a little more positive about the situation at work, fingers crossed!

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    It sounds like the work problem is being handled to everyone's satisfaction.

Happy Birthday to your son. I hope you all have an enjoyable celebration.

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    I'm so happy that your meeting went well. You should be very proud of standing up for YOU.... you are WORTH IT! Happy Birthday to your son! Love, Dawn emoticon

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KKKAREN 2/5/2010 8:45AM

    Glad your meeting went well. Happy Birthday Micah!

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MTNGRL 2/4/2010 6:19PM

    Glad the meeting went as well as it did. I am so proud of you for standing on your feet and speaking up for yourself. You are such a strong woman!

It was very poignant reading about your son's birthday and passage from a child to a young man. It brought back memories of my two at that age. You want them to grow, but oh how you don't want them to not need you. At least that is how I felt. Loved today's blog! emoticon

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2/1--Why do I let things hurt me so?

Monday, February 01, 2010

Hi there,

It was another tough day at work...and I know what I need to do, and I know what was wrong with what was written to me in an email, and I know that I have my own integrity and faith on my side. Yet, all that aside--the personal attack grabs hold of me and hurts way too much. I know that I am a perfectionist and give my best, and I don't know if that sets me up for a fall when others are mean-spirited, but I am so down tonight. I just keeping thinking about how unfair this business was--and is. It sure seems as if I am being used as a scape goat for other things and I need to be left alone. I am not responsible for things that happen when I am not at work and I am not responsible for people who don't do what they should do whether I am there or in another location, during my paid worktime or my personal, unpaid time.

I hope I don't sound too negative. I am hurt and it feels as if the salt was poured in the wound. I will contact my support people and will not respond to this page of "concerns" without my union representation. This has gotten to be a way of life that I don't quite know how to manage. The final part was another complaint about my stored materials. I do not have any other storage space. I cannot lift, pack or unpack boxes due to my physical condition. I cannot move things out of my pantry classroom elsewhere because I cannot get to them and have no place to put them. I just am unable to do these things given the fact that I am in a wheelchair and am limited to the number of steps I can take without the other physical activity.

I am glad that I have my faith. I am glad that I have my new friend. I am glad that I put myself first and didn't respond in any way and I didn't find something inappropriate to eat in response. I did work out long and hard today instead which got me through the afternoon and my family time. I am reflecting now and getting ready to call it a day--and it is back, weighing on my heart. Is there really a way to let this kind of thiong go? Please help me to learn how to do this if you have a good technique. I don't have a great deal of cognitive or physical energy left for this after dealing with my pain issues and caring for my family.

Thanks for listening...and for your help and prayers. I am blessed to have you and my family and my dear friends who really care about me.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    You're such an inspiration to me. Don't let others bring you down! Be blessed and be well my friend. Love, Dawn emoticon

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LOULOUBELLE2 2/2/2010 9:02PM

    What can I say to you my dear friend that will help? I wish I had a magic wand to make thing good for you again. Most of the others have expressed it so well. Particularly Emily, she is so caring and thoughtful. Her response about "God Healing Your Heart" was right on. Put your trust in "Him". I know it's hard to wait for His answers, but "He" is caring you through this. You may not feel it but think of the beautiful poem "FootPrints". read it and know that "He" is caring you right now. "
My prayers are going up to "Him" for you....I know it's a hard time, but Sylvia, You will survive and be better for it. God bless you my friend.
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MTNGRL 2/2/2010 3:19PM

    I spend some time each day reading devotionals on line. When you spoke of that this is heavy on your heart I remembered something from a devotional I read . It said that our Father in Heaven is here to heal our heart. He knows our worries, problems and hurts. We need to take them to Him and He will carry us and them. I am just going to pray that the Lord continues to be by your side and help you through this. emoticon emoticon

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    I think I would just explain my position calmly and in a nonjudgmental fashion. Seeing that you are in a wheelchair a reasonable person would have to assume that you can't do things in the same way that other workers do. If it is important to them then they can assign someone to remedy the situation. I think you have to keep in mind that some bosses feel it is their job to identify and correct problems even when they seem insignificant. Many places are top heavy and these people have to appear to be doing something. emoticon

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SWEESIN 2/2/2010 9:30AM

    I know what it is like to be top producer and to be picked on. Promotions went to others less qualified. I attribute this to several things. 1) appearance- it was the bone of contention whenever it was time for a promotion, the appearance, body odor etc. came to the forefront- otherwise I was left alone to produce. I was continually given more to do, because I could and would do it. I did it because, I kept thinking good work would bring rewards. 2) my emanation of low self esteem-it came out in appearance( I stayed obese), attitude- long periods of negativity and dissatisfaction from me. 3)we do live in a world where looks do matter-NO MATTER WHAT WE WANT TO THINK. WE ARE JUDGED BY OUR APPEARANCE AND THE COMPANY THAT WE KEEP. Another truth was that your past is never allowed to die. I have learned also that you need to reach out to others. You need to do two things for yourself: 1) learn to say "NO" and 2) set limits and ask for help when needed.

ALWAYS be kind to yourself. Your friend in sparking.

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KKKAREN 2/2/2010 8:03AM

    Don't let other get you down. Give yourself the respect you deserve and forget about the others.

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DIANE7786 2/1/2010 11:14PM

    I used to mentor middle school children who often thought they were being picked on unfairly. Most times it was true, in my opinion. I told them if they could look me in the eye and say they did their best, no one should expect more of them and they should forget about silly things other people say. It was amazing how much confidence that gave them. They were still unfairly picked on, but their attitude was clearly different. They told me about the incidents and said, "I thought about if I could have done anything differently. I know I did my best and now I've stopped thinking about it.

To you, as an adult, I suggest if you know you are doing your best, it really doesn't matter what others say. Ignore them by thinking of God, family or whatever makes you happy at that moment. Some people like complaining so don't allow them to make you feel badly. Ignore e-mails. If they complain in person, let them rant and then say, "Thank you for expressing your opinion." You don't have to justify your reasons for anything to anyone except your supervisors.

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Saturday, January 30--My devotional story

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Hi everyone,

Another piece of writing I have been working on is a devotional piece to go in a book that members of our church are writing. It is personal and based in the gifts nad miracles of God, yet it is also a very true and real part of who I am as an adult Christian mother, wife, and teacher. I'm going to paste it in here for you to read and consider. I am still in the editing process, so if you have a question, comment or suggestion, please share with me.
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John 14:12-14 The context is Jesus speaking to the apostle Philip:
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it."

When it is close to the time for a baby to be born, excitement and stress both build together. We had been anticipating the birth of our 5th child, so some of this was not at all new to us. My bag was packed and the baby’s things were all ready, tiny and precious—some new and some gently used by brothers and sisters. January 22, 1991 was the day that my water broke and we knew that it was the day our newest family member would join us. We went to the hospital and as I was in labor, nurses and student nurses and other hospital staff members came in the room and watched bombs dropping on Iraq, the first televised war and the beginning of Desert Storm. I was pretty much ignored until my doctor stopped to check on me and pointed out to everyone that things weren’t quite progressing at a typical rate. She brought in an ultrasound machine and found that our child was going to need a lot of help to be born—and I was wheeled in quickly for an emergency c-section.

Our son was born in just a few minutes later. He was beautiful, without any of the marks of the hard work of being born. He weighed 11 pounds 2 ounces and seemed to be a good match for one of the names we had selected—Miles Patrick Elliott. We went through the typical days in the hospital required for me to recuperate. When we finally went home, we had a warm welcome from his sister, three brothers, and our family babysitter. It was sweet that our babysitter came each of the next several days, even though she didn’t really have to come.

On the third day of us being home, something caught my attention. I noticed a terribly foul smell and it seemed to be coming from our gorgeous new baby. My husband couldn’t smell it and neither could our babysitter and friend. It really bothered me and after a good deal of prayer, I made a decision that if it continued the next day, I would call our pediatrician. It was even more intense the next day, and even though the other adults around me couldn’t smell it, I called our doctor. He was very understanding when I talked to him and his answer to me was that if it bothered me “enough to call that he wanted to see Miles.” I took him to the office and they drew blood and did a lumbar puncture. They had me take him to the hospital to be admitted right away. It turned out that Miles had a nasty bug called group B strep, a condition generally fatal for newborns.

Miles was admitted to the hospital and spent the next 15 days of his life receiving IV antibiotics. I stayed by his side this entire time as I convalesced from my own surgery and met other parents and sick children. The second day we were in the hospital, our pediatrician told me something that shows the miracle in all of this. He told me if I “had called him the day before, they wouldn’t have caught this infection yet ad if I had waited until the following day, it would have been too late to treat it and Miles would have died.” To this day, I get goosebumps when I share this story of God’s love and intervention, this miracle of modern day.

John 13:7 “What I do, you don’t know now but you shall know hereafter.”
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Love to all, Sylvia

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MAMMABEAR-THIRY 2/23/2010 5:55PM

    A wonderful story. It reminds me of the year my youngest son was born and all the problems he had (too many to go into here) and the fact that I just about lost him. You are right the wonders of modern medicine are just amazing.

Take care.

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MTNGRL 2/20/2010 1:36PM

    Sylvia, thank you so much for sharing this. It is a miracle indeed that you prayed and were led to call the doctor. My own son developed this infection and I know how scary it must have been. Actually I think it was staph not strep. Sorry for the mistake. It was scary.

Comment edited on: 2/21/2010 10:02:39 AM

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FUNNYGRANNY71 2/1/2010 5:05PM

    Thanks for sharing this moving devotional. It was written very well.

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JHADZHIA 1/30/2010 10:48PM

    Wow! What a beautiful, moving, event! Thanks for sharing it with us!! It will be a wonderful addition to the book!

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MARTHAR3 1/30/2010 9:38PM

    Very well written devotional Sylvia! And so touching I love when a devtion is a real life situation.

Bless you for sharing your miracle with us!!

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MMICKEYP 1/30/2010 9:02PM

    God's timing...awesome! Everytime you look at little Miles I'm sure you consider him your miracle baby, don't you! A constant reminder of God's love. Awesome.

I think your devotional entry is great. You may want to shorten it up a little if there's a word limit. You can go online, copy and paste it into a word counter and see where you're at. I have written short stories etc., and was always required to have a limit of 400 words, etc. It's a real challenge but what it does is force you to re-word and think about what's really important. I usually find that the words I am unwilling to part with are the most important..and the rest if fluff.

A thesaurus can help you find descriptive words, also. I'd shorten up the entire second paragraph and eliminate most of it. I found myself wanting to brush by it and hop right down to the good stuff! I liked the line in the 4th paragraph:

"On the third day of us being home, something caught my attention."

You had me there... what? what caught your attention? I HAD to keep reading...lol.

God is so good to us isn't He! I love devotionals and have several sent to me in my email each day. What a blessing to be working on one for your church! I know your story about Miles and God's intervention will really be inspirational and bless others. It needs to be told! God bless you! emoticon

Comment edited on: 1/30/2010 9:04:03 PM

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