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Saturday, 10/30 A rant!!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Hi there,

The past couple of days have left a lot to be desired...And I am really grumpy and am trying to find my patience, but it seems to have walked off. emoticon emoticon

Let me wander back to the Thursday that I was anticipating a lot of activity... I made all of the arrangements that I needed to get to my ortho's appointment. I covered my reading groups so that I could leave work without a problem and I still taught the guy I tutor before school and taught my first group. I ended up driving my son's big truck that is pretty hard for me to hike myself up into. I got to the appointment on time and when I went to check in, I was told that they called me yesterday to let me know they had cancelled my appointment and rescheduled it for November 4th. Not so--my cell phone won't work in the new school--too much metal, mortar, technology, something--but it won't work and I let it go without refilling the time last week--however, if they called it, they would have found that it wasn't in service. There was no call to my home, so who exactly did they call? emoticon emoticon emoticon (No sign of them on our caller ID or our answering machine, hmm???) I got back to school and salvaged my morning lessons--only to realize that I am going to have to do the same thing next Thursday. I plan to share this with my doctor, he is so good with patient care that he isn't going to care much for this lack of effort on the part of his staff--and to top it off, I have been trying to get attention for this shoulder since August 2 and I am losing patience with the entire ordeal. It wakes me up night after night in burning, miserable pain. they now have the MRI that shows thickening of tendons and either one or more tears--something needs to get healed up and I am very tired of this. GRR-RRRR

I had to cancel my pool class on the same Thursday for a conference with a family who does not speak English. The classroom teacher was called away at the end of her day because her father ended up in ICU after a frightening spell in which he didn't even have andy Id on him. That was unexpected and was an emergency. However none of the other people, including the translator bothered to remember or make an appearance and no one from the office even came to my rescue to welcome the family or apologize to them or anything. I did what I could and didn't make it home until after 7PM--I felt so bad for this family and there was a lot that needed to be discussed. Actually, it still needs to be discussed and I don't know what to do about it without having some other folks on board.

While I was at work, our old clunker truck had some starter malfunction so that now leaves us with two vehicles we depend on not in service. We have not one, but two mechanic types n our house who had not gotten to anything by the time I got home. What is up with that? I know it was late and not warm out, but sometimes, we all have to bite the bullet and tend to things in less than ideal surroundings. I just shrugged my shoulders and told them to figure it all out and I went to the pool for my regular workout that my stressed out body really needed.

That brings me to Friday--the Halloween day at school. The kids have been getting more and more excited and off task as the week has progressed--nothing unusual to an experienced elementary teacher. This is my least favorite "holiday" of the year because I just don't get the purpose of it all--to stuff our kids full of sugar from strangers and from those close to us. Duh, why is this needed??? I started the day with a lousy headache, but with the understanding that one of our cars was going to get fixed because our other son had to go out of town to pick up his credentials for his new job (YAY, he is now almost completely and officially a teacher and will be able to pay his student loans and make the investment in his education pay off!!.) Lots of interruptions and issues laced my morning, but with the school parade at 1:15 and parties after that, I knew that I could manage things. I even made contact with a translator to follow up on Thursday evening's little mess and developed some long range plans. 800mg of ibuprofen handled the nasty headache and even took the bite off of the pain in my back and shoulder--I'm not supposed to take it after the issues in my stomach, but I couldn't stand that sharp pain.

My husband and son came to pick me up in the big truck--and I found out that my husband and our mechanic son hadn't fixed the other car yet--but they sent the older guy off because they anticipated they would get it done. Mason needed his truck, so that left us at home with no vehicle and two other sons who needed to be picked up from their jobs. And guess what? Of course, they didn't get the car running. It still isn't running--but Mason is at work and we have his truck today. We only have to pick Micah up from a sleepover, a bowling class, voice lesson, two people to work, and somehow, I need to go run errands--bills, grocery shopping, post office etc...

And they don't understand my frustration...

I think they think that this place runs by itself.

I think they think I go to the pool each day to play and they don't understand that my arthritis needs the workout that I get. And I am sure that nobody here understands what it is like to be awakened by pain multiple times a night. I am not even asking for anyone to feel sorry for me with this because I have learned ways to live with it--but they took that away from me last night and possibly today. It isn't fair and it isn't me just ranting. It is what I need.

I am wondering if they will get this straightened out sometime today. I am wondering if I am going to have a breakdown of some kind. I am tired and grumpy and I don't like this mood.

I want a vacation away from all of the glamour and happiness that is part of my everyday life right now--and then, maybe I'll be able to deal with life's little frustrations.

Yes, it has been a couple of "those kids of days" and I know it will pass. But for now, I'm on edge. Big time. Thanks for letting me rant, it really helps some and keeps me from saying hurtful things to people who don't need to hear them and who are only guilty of being themselves (which is different than the responsible, in charge person life has made me into.)

OK, I need to figure out what I can do--I need to get to the pool but it closes early on weekends and I don't know what might be available. It's cold out again too. That is fall here in the Midwest...

Time to calm down, pray, reflect, plan and figure this out while maybe, just maybe, somebody works on the car. (Unless one of you would like to buy it!!)

Gentle hugs,
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    I hate times like this. When it rains it pours. I hope things are improved now.

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JHADZHIA 11/3/2010 9:06AM

    Maybe you need to be more firm with the son that can fix the car. Really stress its urgent that you have a car, how can everyone get to their various jobs, appointments and activities without one..
I know what waking up in pain is all about. Its too bad they can't give you something for your pain that doesn't bother your stomach. I am lucky I have a Dr. that listens to me and gives me proper stuff that works and doesn't bother my stomach. She doesn't worry about the 'addictive' nature of this medicine because she knows I am responsible and will only take it if I really need it. Sometimes, you need to be more proactive of your care and just speak up until you get some satisfaction.
Take care of yourself,
{{{gentle hugs]]]

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LADYLAUGHS247 11/2/2010 2:27PM

  Sylvia - I am wondering how you are doing. I hope the family pulled together and straightened out the vehicle situation. That is unneeded stress! I can understand your frustration with the doctor's office and work. Feel free to vent whenever you need it! Gentle hugs coming your way.

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ACIMPEGGY 10/31/2010 12:02AM

    And the pool is relaxing, too. Sylvia, you need a vacation. Let's get away together...no one who stresses us is invited.

Can you get away for an afternoon with a girlfriend? Maybe lunch and a movie? No complaints...just laughter.

Like it said in the Readers' Digest, "Laughter IS the Best Medicine!"


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MOLGRA2 10/31/2010 12:00AM


I hope things are looking up soon! I know what you mean about being frustrated with the people that work the front desk at the Dr's office. I LOVE my OB/GYN, but could not stand the girl that took your info when you checked in. EVERY time I had an appt when I was pregnant with DD #2 she was either nasty or belittling. She would call my home an hour before my appt to try to reschedule when I was already at work for the day - then it was somehow my fault that I didn't get the message. Nevermind, she never called my work number. GRRR! I was so glad when she finally left. Of course, by then I was about ready to have the baby and don't have as many appts with that Dr., but still......

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    Sounds like a day/week that gained momentum on you. Hugs! Hope you get it all squared away quickly.

By the way...I agree with you about the candy holiday. Ugh!

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DAWNWATERWOMAN 10/30/2010 6:19PM

    Sometimes the only thing left to do is sit back, relax, breathe deeply and PRAY. You're in my prayers my dear friend. Love ya, Dawn emoticon

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45ANDFIT1 10/30/2010 2:44PM

    Didn't it feel good to get it all out in your blog! It always helps me to just write out my frustration (and then do a heavy-duty workout!)

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60SIXTY 10/30/2010 2:18PM

    emoticon Your last paragraph sums up what you need to do.
Maybe not the part about selling the car. Those decisions need to be made during a post-rant moment of calm.

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BRATSCHECOR 10/30/2010 2:17PM

    I feel your pain. Sometimes I hear myself saying repeatedly "Does Momma have to do EVERYTHING around here?!?" Good for you in taking the initiative to get yourself to the pool and the time that you need. Hope everything works out!

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Wednesday, 10/27 Just when I thought it was...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

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Hello all!!

I have started a few sentences with these words today. I guess I'm fussing again. Just when I thought my body and I were at peace, I had last night and was up for some 3 hours because of the dueling pain in my back and shoulder. I should have guessed the big windy weather front was here dropping our temperature by some 25 degrees during the night. That is hard stuff on the arthritis I have.
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Just when I thought it was safe to go in the teacher's lounge a big basket of candy appeared today. I am the proud owner of a couple of tootsie pops as a result. I think those may keep me away from a lot of other junk that may be coming our way during this big ticket holiday time in an elementary school. It is all my kids are talking about and thinking about--and they cannot stay focused on any other topic besides Halloween, their costumes and their parties for more than a few minutes at a time. It sure makes teaching tough!
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Just when I thought it was safe to make plans and do my life, we had a car break down and we cannot afford the repairs until Friday, payday. Not only is this expensive, but it sure makes it hard to get this many people to the number of different places we all have to go to pretty difficult. (I was some 10 minutes late to my doctor appointment tonight and I'm very worried about my very important doctor's appointment for my shoulder tomorrow.)
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Just when I thought that I knew how to say "no," I have found out that it isn't as easy as I wish it were. My list of things to do is growing and growing and I am going to be overloaded again. I have two days in the coming couple of weeks that I am double-booked to be in two places at once. Why do I get myself into all of this?
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Oh well, just when I thought it was too crazy around here, something good happens and makes it all better. My son goes over to his new job tomorrow to get settled in. My other son has found a job that may be more than some strange door to door sales job. We all have to be at these important places tomorrow--but I know my kids and I will work it out. I am going to get ready for the pool now and hopefully put my body at ease so that I can sleep better tonight. emoticon

That's a good starting place, anyway!!

Gentle hugs,
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    We managed to not buy any candy this year and I was relieved. I hope you get the car fixed soon.

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JHADZHIA 10/28/2010 1:47AM

    I so understand the weather affecting your condition. Maybe that was what happened to me too. Saskatchewan is noted for its rapidly changing weather and wild swings in temperatures unfortunately. Its never been a good place to live with RA :(.
Hope its nothing serious with your vehicle.
I so hope you get some solutions for your shoulder with this Doctor. Do what ever you have to do to make it there, call a friend or neighbor to take you, or even a cab if it must come to that.
Enjoy your pool time.
Hope your sons' new jobs ork out for them.
Gentle hugs,

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BLESSED2BEME 10/28/2010 12:18AM

    Sending you gentle hugs back Syliva. I'm so glad this year that we don't have any reason to have halloween candy in the house. I'm gonna keep it that way too!!!! Anxious to hear about your shoulder appointment.

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MARTHAWILL 10/27/2010 10:56PM

    Sylvia, you have challenges but you still manage to be positive about things working out. Good for you!
Saying "no" can be so easy for a while but "falling off the wagon " can happen in a flash. In the end, we have to remind ourselves that we are worth the effort and can overcome the obstacles.

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ROLLINGSTONEMOM 10/27/2010 10:11PM

    Oh, how many times those words have come from my mouth as well. Especially the one "Just when I thought I could say 'No'."

Prayers going up for a speedy fix for the "sick" car. And I pray that isn't terribly expensive to repair.

I'm sorry the weather is affecting your arthritis. I know it's hard and (literally and figuatively) a pain. Praying for His comfort for your aching body.

Best of luck to your sons with their new endeavors!


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Monday, 10/25 The Metamorphosis of Spark Teams

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


Spark teams have been on my mind a lot lately. I am co-leader on three teams and two are in a bit of transition. One of them has two of my co-leaders tied up with a lot of life. (Linda injured herself and cannot use the computer much and LouAnne is actually fighting Congress--or rather trying to get them to work with her.) My other team that is in transition is the Spark Class Team that I am co-leader of. I recently put out a request for additional co-leaders and I now have 3 new helpers who are ready to get their feet wet and lend a hand.

I realized long ago that Spark Teams each have their own personalities. I think that each of them begins with the spark of the leader--a dream for helping others with like interests. Even the Spark Class Teams begin that way--I know I wanted to set up a team that gave everyone a thorough introduction to SP. As the team gets that initial burst of energy from the leader/ co-leaders, it takes on the personality of the most active members. It can be funny or energetic or thoughtful or serious or laid-back or any other personality traits.

As members take ownership of the team and as they grow fond of the leaders, the team changes to match those members. I think the team becomes an extension to that original spark with those early characteristics. The purpose or goal of the group also plays a big role in this metamorphosis. The team begins to stand more independently and the leader's job is to keeps things moving and to give the team it's personality.

The team finally becomes what it "is." It has a "mature form" and does it's own business regularly. When it gets to this point, the leader's job is more like "maintenance." The leader has established what the team is about and what it does--and then needs to do the work at hand. That work basically is to support the members in their personal efforts at living a healthy lifestyle with regular fitness. The leader helps share information and facilitates the growth of each team member who chooses to take advantage of what the team has to offer. The team leader treats the team as his/her "baby," nurturing and bringing the team members and the team along the path of good health through personal choices and decision-making.

I think I understand a team and it's role fairly well. All of this thinking has left me with defining my own role within the team as a member and in some teams as a leader. The important thing that I have been trying to maintain is that I must take care of my own purposes at SP primarily. I realized that everything I do here at SP is to boost my own work at improved health whether it is in being a team member or in being a leader.

I'm sure glad that SP is here--because it all comes back to me becoming a healthier person.

Gentle hugs,

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    I totally agree. Your initial goal of weight loss and improved health should be the priority. I remind myself of that often. LOL.

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BLESSED2BEME 10/27/2010 1:02AM

    Very insightful! Thanks for sharing this...I've been giving serious thought to the teams I am on because I don't interact with them all and that just doesn't seem fair to them or I. More to think about now...

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THINTWIN2 10/26/2010 4:50PM

    You've really put some thought into this and I think you have some good insight into the role of the team, the members and the leaders. It saddens me when people join the team but never post and don't even create a spark page. The team and tools on Spark People can't help if they don't put some effort into it. I believe that many join looking for that magic bullet and when they realize it takes effort on their part they quit. So those who post, even if they only do it for social reasons and aren't really following healthy habits,are still ahead because they are exposed to new ideas and have some support and hopefully they will become motivated to try again at some point. Only a quitter loses. I guess you can see I've put some thought into it as well. I'm so glad for you and LouAnn and Linda and also those who post regularly on our OALB team. You keep me going!
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TLCFME 10/26/2010 2:08PM

    Wonderful wisdom. I am happy to be a helper in the background right now. I am grateful for people like you who step up to lead and do it so well. Glad to call you a spark friend!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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    Sylvia, thank you for the insight. It helps those of us who are trying to help you, as well. You are truly a blessing to our class team. Thank you for all you do!

emoticon Team leader!

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DDHEART 10/26/2010 9:03AM

    Very well thought out and I am set to thinking about this as relates to myself and my teams. Thanks!

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KKKAREN 10/26/2010 9:02AM

    I love the Spark teams but keep my teams to a manageble few.

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Saturday, 10/23 Theatre Moms

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Hi there,

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon I just got home from my youngest daughter's high school production of "A Midsummer's Night Dream." It was less than a month ago that we saw our oldest daughter's community theatre production of "Hard to Believe." In a couple of weeks, her college theatre play--whose name I am not sure I even know is playing. I was thinking about the time we spend taking our girls to play practice and all of the hours they spend there. I'm sorry that I forgot my camera tonight, but the look on Marissa's face told me that this was way important to her. You couldn't have wiped that smile off or shaken it off or well, it was a part of her after her first theatre production and I am very aware that theatre is a part of her now.

Lots of parents do sports and sporting events--we have certainly done our share over the years--lots and lots of baseball and softball (We actually had a year that we had 6 children playing ball on 5 different teams. We spent that summer in ballparks!) All of our children have played a musical instrument--or two and most of them have also been in vocal music (with several of them "shining" and qualifying for awards, state, etc...) However, it is the theatre that has become an "aha" to me. Theatre requires a large time commitment on the teenager's part. Theatre makes them want to make that commitment as well. That big smile finally helped me to get it. The satisfaction that she felt from her "job well done" hasn't quite been matched by anything else she has accomplished. I wonder if it is the time with her castmates that developed into something and their pride in helping others to enjoy their efforts that has given that special feeling to her. I guess it doesn't matter much, because the reality is that there will be another play in February. It was announced on the program, maybe to warn all of the parents. I know that she will be trying out again and I know that I now have another daughter who is excited by the world of theatre.

Move over Soccer Moms--Theatre Moms have a job that is a little more thankless and that goes on a lot longer than your sports season. (By the way, I know that "theatre" is different than "theater." I thought it was my older daughter being picky a very long time ago. The latter of the two is a building, the former is the art. That was a bit of news to me, when I received that part of my education!!)

Gentle hugs,

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    I went through much of the same with my son including the theatre. LOL.

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LADYLAUGHS247 10/26/2010 9:14AM

  This is a great blog. Yes, your daughter is getting as much out of it as she's putting into it. Gotta love the confidence shining through! My hat's off to you for putting in your own commitment. That smile might be your only reward, but it's price is above rubies!

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JHADZHIA 10/24/2010 7:56PM

    Good for Marissa! I would have thought theater seats more comfortable then bleachers ;) Enjoy your daughter's new love. At least there is no sweaty sports clothing to wash, cold weather games to watch, and most important, no chance of injury.
{{{{gentle hugs}}}}

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2RICKIE 10/24/2010 3:16PM

    Yes. we do! Those smiles M. gives you will stay in your heart!


By, the way my great niece Marissa and little friend Marisa are following in are sure to follow the same path as yours!

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DAWNWATERWOMAN 10/24/2010 2:31PM

    Dance moms & theatre moms are similar. Enjoy it while you can. Love ya, Dawn emoticon

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Thursday, 10/21--Over-extended/ bad choices

Friday, October 22, 2010

Hi everyone,

This week has flown by and although I have been quite active, I am back to a few bad and thoughtless habits taking over. emoticon emoticon I am going to have to manage things better. My story...

We went back to work after our two week break and a big problem for me right now is shoes. emoticon I know that seems a bit silly, but after my bout of RSD and the need to replace my knee replacement, my doc and PT both told me that I should wear my athletic shoes all of the time. emoticon I went to a sporting goods store recommended by the PT and was fitted for a pair of NBs--I don't remember which number--and I wore them for quite a while. Since then, I have been wearing NBs when shoes are needed. However, they aren't quite a match for how I dress for work. I wear skirts and nice tops most of the time or dresses--and of course, I wear jeans on casual Fridays. I have another problem with my athletic shoes--I need help to put on my socks and shoes and to get them tied. emoticon Between my faulty right knee and my back, I cannot bend in a way that allows me to do this on my own. I HATE this, a lot. SO-OO-O-O, I am still wearing my summer slides most of the time. I have a couple of nice pairs that have a good support and arch. Our weather doesn't quite support these and they don't match my longer sleeves and warmer clothing, so I tried a couple of other pairs of shoes this week. Oh my, my pain level has been stinky and I think that it is the inappropriate shoes on top of the coming weather front that is my problem. Grr, I just want to look nice, that is valued where I work. emoticon emoticon

The next thing is that we had two staff birthdays and "Principal's Day/ Boss's Day" this week. There has been cake, emoticoncake and more cake emoticon in the lounge emoticon which is handily located right next to my classroom. I have been careful to only take a half of a piece or smaller when I have taken it, but I have indulged far more than I have in a long time. I have had a couple of partial pieces each day this week which is adding up to too much that I don't need. I don't know what has gotten into me, but walking by this stuff hasn't even seemed to be an option. this is destructive behavior and I will not do it again. I know what cake tastes like and I don't need this. emoticon emoticon

I am working extra hours now as well (my choice for the most part.) emoticon I am tutoring one of my little guys before school each day, using Reading Recovery to help get him the boost I believe he needs to shine. emoticon I am also working with a group of (gulp) ten first graders who aren't my students--but maybe should be if I had time on my schedule to put them in) two nights a week after school for an hour. emoticon Those days coincide with the fitness class I signed up for at the pool. emoticon I haven't quite gotten the schedule together--but tonight I tried following the class with my regular workout and then when I came home, I was pretty miserable. I don't know if it was the extra hour and a half on my work day, the shoes or the exercise that got me, but pain is pain... emoticon emoticon

I guess I am blogging to share that some of my bad habits are seeping in and I realize that I have not arrived and I am not safe from myself. I am going to make some commitments to myself right now...

1) I will wear appropriate shoes and I will ask for help--even if they aren't pretty and stylish and even if I have to be dependent on others. emoticon emoticon
2) I will eat what I need and what is best for me on schedule--and I will walk by things I don't really need or want. Cake isn't even one of my favorite foods. emoticon emoticon emoticon I will save those calories for something that is "worth it" to me!!
3) I have enough to do and cannot take on any other activities even if they need to be done. emoticon emoticon emoticon There are others who can help out. I will admit that my early tutoring is such a wonderful and refreshing way to start my day and I am enjoying it immensely. I hope my little guy is too, he seems to be!!

On another note, we are rebuilding our kitchen--floors then painting, new cabinet doors, and the like--as we prepare for our holiday plans to have family come here this year. That is yet another task on hand, but I am saving the bulk of those jobs for the weekend, not during my work week.

Is there ever enough time, energy to do what needs to be done, or money to do things easily? Not in our house anyway!!

Gentle hugs,
Sylvia emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MTNGRL 10/23/2010 4:24PM

    Wow, you are one busy lady. No, there is never enough time, energy or $$$ to get it all done. Just do what you can but make sure you make time for you.

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DAWNWATERWOMAN 10/23/2010 6:20AM

    In answer to your ending question.... I don't think so.

Sorry that you're in so much pain all the time my friend. You're always in my thoughts & prayers. Love ya, Dawn emoticon emoticon

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2RICKIE 10/22/2010 11:26AM

    Wow, remember days like that and wonder how you do it all! I never had to have two sessions a day extra.

When I was restricted in movement, I put on my stockings lying down.

BTW, new balance does make a cool black dressy looking shoe. If you need good shoes try Munro, good support in dressy slip ons. Also Bjorn (sp) has good slip ons with great arch support and ankle support.

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JHADZHIA 10/22/2010 11:11AM

    I love how devoted you are to your students. They are so lucky to have you!! But you must also look after your own needs. You are not in good health and perhaps shouldn't be taking on quite so much. You really don't want to make yourself worse.
I don't believe its the cake drawing you, its the pain. Emotional eating is what looks like has happened here. Little indulgences to take your mind off the constant pain.
I can so relate to struggling with shoes. I absolutely cannot wear anything but running shoes and never really have. My orthotics just slide out of sandals, and they don't support my weak ankles that are constantly trying to turn over. I, at least am able to bend over to reach the shoes, but that is the easy part. The actual tying them, tight enough to support my ankles is the fun part. My fingers are in really bad shape and just gripping things brings on the pain. I feel like they are going to fall apart or break up when I am actually pulling on the laces. Its frustrating, but what can you do?? I did try a slip on shoe once, but it was a waste of my money, I couldn't walk in them :( Would that be an option for you maybe, if you don't have ankle problems, you can get them with decent flat soles.
I too, use NB, with the rollar bar sole as recommended by my podiatrist. I do love the large cushioning sole on them.
Good for you for waking up and realizing what is going on and keeping yourself accountable by writing about it. You can do this. You are strong willed and will succeed at anything you put your mind to.
Take care of yourself,
Gentle Hugs,

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    Sylvia, don't you ever breathe?!? My goodness, you are busy, busy, busy. I pray those parents appreciate how special you are to be helping their young ones with the reading. You are a true blessing to the future of America. Thank you for loving what you do. emoticon

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