Sunday, November 30, 2008

What's a mom to do?

On Friday night I let P stay over at a friend’s house. I’m not a huge fan of sleep-overs and my kids don’t do a lot of them, but considering the news P had received on Thursday, I thought it’d be a fun distraction for the lad.

The boy who invited him, Beau, wouldn’t have been my first choice, but he seems nice enough, just very hyper with a short attention span. And if him and P like each other, who am I to stand in the way?

When I went to collect P I went in for a cuppa with Beau’s mom, and I have to admit during the conversation I was surprised by how much freedom this lady gives her children.

But then the word ‘freedom’ is misleading. I don’t deny my kids opportunities to go out with the intention of taking any ‘freedoms’ away, simply that none of my children are old enough to be in town on a Friday night catching the last bus home.

There was an awkward moment when I realised her daughter – who does this – is a year younger than R, but I made more of a point than there realy is about the lousy bus route near us as an added reason.

(This raises another point I’ve just realised – why do I try and smooth differences, when I do stand by, and will defend, my belief that R is too young??)

But back to the tale….I finished the very nice tea, we said our thank-yous, and bid them farewell.

P jumped in the car with a small smile and a wave behind him.

Me: Did you have fun Darling?

P: NO!

I was still smiling and waving at them, and managed to keep it up with only a slight pause.

Me: Smile and wave P! You can explain in a minute.

One minute later……

P: Beau’s horrible! He wouldn’t let me sleep!!

Me (trying not to smile): Oh…..

P: And I’m hungry! He wouldn’t let me have breakfast!!

Me (with a slight frown): What do you mean ‘he wouldn’t let you’?

P: His mom told Beau to get me breakfast, but they don’t have cereal, and when I asked Beau if I could have toast, he said I was a d***head and wouldn’t let me.

Me: I beg your par…..

P: He said more than that! He said you, daddy and Papa are f***ing idiots for thinking I’d pass that exam, and he likes sex videos!

Me (blinking with more than a smidge of surprise – these boys are 10/11!!): P stop swearing!

P: It’s not me! It was him!

Me: You watched a sex video??

P: No, his mom kept coming in. And I told him I didn’t want to, but then he pulled his trousers down and sat on me!

Me (frankly lost for words): I’m really sorry to hear all this P. You’re really friends with this kid?

P: Umm sometimes he’s nice, but he isn’t if you’re not his friend.

Me (wishing I had better advice!): Well Beau sounds very immature, and I don’t think you should go to play again until he’s grown up some.

P: Aren’t you cross he called you a f***ing idiot?

Me: P please stop swearing!! I know you’re only telling me what he said, but picture is clear now!

P: He said the C word too.

Me (filled with even more alarm): C word? Spell it!!!

P: C-R-A-P

Me (thinking phew!): oh. Well like I said, I don’t think you’ll be going to play there again!

Later we talked about the school situation. P said he was scared to move up to seniors at the school he’s at, because he sees blood on the pavements and walls, and had seen a big fight last week when going to a lesson (they ‘integrate’ the boys in the final year of primary)

I’ve had to explain to him that his school is the 2nd best there is, here. The best is no longer an option, at least for a year to two. And the others….well, if his own school scares him….

The poor lad isn’t even 11 yet. Of course the BH puts it in perspective.

He was raised in Glasgow, on one of the biggest housing estates in Europe. By P’s age the BH went to school at 7:30 – to avoid the gangs who would kick your teeth out as soon as look at you.

What have I done to my children? You think protecting them, and teaching them to behave well is the best way to raise them, and now I’m wondering if I live in a bubble, and I haven’t let the children see out.

I don’t want my boy having to fight his way through school, but then, I don’t want him afraid of life either – and it seems, this is life.

I truly don’t know whether it’s me at fault, or the world at large.

But in an effort to end on a positive note...we’re off on holiday soon!

Friday, November 28, 2008

My week from hell

Monday morning I was in a meeting, accompanying my main boss Tom, when my phone rang. It doesn’t happen a lot – so I hadn’t turned it off.

It was my other ‘boss’ Nick the dipstick, useless one (the one who runs my main bosse’s 2nd company (main boss has three now)).

His words to me were, “I’ve quit!”

It’s safe to say he caught me off guard, and with a table full of people looking at me – waiting to continue the meeting, all I could mutter was, “Not now, Nick!” and I slammed the phone down.

Of course the main boss frowned at me, and it probably didn’t look great to everyone else that I speak to one of the bosses like that.

*sigh* as soon as the meeting was over a roller-coaster ride began. Nick called me back just as I got back to my car, and he obviously didn’t realise Tom was sitting next to me.

To cut a long story short, the spineless, ignorant little sh*t screwed Tom royally. And I feel me too.

At the time he claimed he'd dismissed the employees - but at least two of them would have demanded compensation, and as they hadn't been on the phone to me screaming for it, I knew there was more to the tale....turns out he's been planning this weeks – which is almost amusing, as on a dog walk with the boss’s wife last Thursday I’d confided to her, that if I didn’t know better, I’d swear he was trying to scupper the company.

I obviously did know better but was too stupid to realise people could behave in such a dishonourable fashion.

He’s setting up with someone who wanted to buy the company 6 months ago, with our men (not dismissed, poached), and our contracts. Even wants to buy our equipment, the little….

He has a legal case to answer, but as this Nick lives week to week with just the cash he has in hand, and not even a bank account – Tom’s been advised that he should really ask himself he wants this to drag out, with very little likelihood of satisfaction. Tom has yet to decide.

So that was Blow number 1.

Tuesday I saw my brother. He was complaining, as usual, bloody hypochondriac. Except he ain’t a bloody hypochondriac, he has two blood clots and is back on the 6 month DVT treatment. Poor bugger. Last time he had to spend months in hospital, thankfully this time they’re letting him get his injections as an outpatient.

And at least he’s upbeat – downright surprising considering he can’t drink and it’s Christmas ;)

And the 3rd blow to the week…..because they always come in 3s! Pierce failed the exam.

I thought I’d be more upset than him, but no, he’s crushed, but refuses to give up saying he wants to take the exam again next year!

But realistically if he can’t get into year 7, will he get into year 8? And will anyone have left in just one year to provide a place for him? We are considering a different angle, that is P could repeat year 6 and take the same exam for year 7 next year.

It would mean an entire repeat of this school year, which is somewhat amusing at he’s the 4th brightest in his school year…..but maybe with extra lessons he’d manage it next year.

*sigh* I’ll do what I can to make that happen for him, but if truth be told I feel so bruised a part of me wants to run away for fear history will simply repeat itself and we’ll simply be in the same position next year.

And we have pointed out to him that it would probably mean he always struggles to keep up – which isn’t a lot of fun! But the boy is besotted with that school, and wants it….and I guess he’s the one who’ll have to do the work, so like I said, I’ll do what I can to help it happen for him.

Just not quite sure where to start... *sigh*

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Long week.....

Today has been a big day for P. He sat the exam for his secondary school, and we’re all stressed and biting our nails over it. Well I am, P’s been quite calm, although it hasn’t been the easiest of weeks.

Poor P’s had problems this week, which is a darn shame as I was hoping to keep things as mellow as possible in the run up to this dreaded exam. But then, his problems didn’t start this week – just that he finally decided to share that he had some problems.

His outpouring came as we arrived at school on Thursday. We had just been shown around his prospective school – where he had appeared fine – but then three minutes after we left he was in tears saying he felt ill.

And P’s been ill a LOT lately. I don’t think he’s managed a whole week at school this term without being sent home for feeling ‘ill’. The alarm bells have been ringing for weeks, and we have been asking, but (he explained) it was only after his (possible) new school seemed real that he finally decided to share his woes.

And wow did I get it! There I was planning to kick my 10 year old out the car, and instead I was sat in the car park for half an hour with a sobbing child.

He’s having a hard time. People are mean in many little ways, but here comes the really hard part……I think at least 60% of it exists only in his mind.

Of course I didn’t say that. I told the secretary that I was taking him home to calm him down – but that ‘apparently’ is unwise, as children rarely want to return. She is a lovely lady and insisted upon talking him into going inside with her, and P’s teacher duly called me an hour later.

I think the poor chap’s as confused as us. The kids P were named are his supposed friends – and I know boys can be horrid, but one of the main ones had called the night before to ask if P could go & play (???) P says he can be nice sometimes, but then, the lads only crime was hiding Ps lunchbox and from what P says, this is a common event amongst the boys – and he admits malice is rarely meant.

But when it happens to HIM he perceives it as a re-enforcement of his belief that people don’t really like him. Which in turn, does put people off!

I love my boy dearly, but I wish I could straighten his logic out. Life ain’t going to be easy if he cant learn to take things a bit lighter, poor P *sigh*

Funnily enough I’m now thinking of someone I’ve met in that game I play. He’s a young man (young enough to be my son!), nice guy once you get past the initial bad-tempered aggressive tone he shows to all. I was lucky, I figured out how to calm his attitude quickly – as he’s simply a grown version of P. The point of mentioning him is, he isn’t liked by all. In fact I’d say he manages to put off about 80-90% of other players – which is a damn shame! And it upsets me, because when all is said and done, it’s him that hurts. For my part I like him, but then I have training in how to understand him ;)

But anyway, back to my boy.

I’m bloody cross with his school at the moment, after a screw up they made yesterday. It was the House General Knowledge quiz, for which there are trials to see if you’re good enough to be 1 of the 3 that represent your House.

P came 3rd! He was over the moon!! He was told he’d be in it – and I thought it was such a bonus to come the day before his exam, a ‘boost’ for his confidence so to speak.

But I guess I got taught a lesson in something, as my hope turned to dismay when his teacher simply called another boys name, and P sat there mutely trying not to cry.

His House won, which would normally be something to celebrate, but P stared out of the car window until we got home then vanished for half an hour before finding the courage to come and explain what had upset him so (I wasn’t there).

With a *sigh* I expect there shall be some reasonable explanation. There’s always is. But why the hell don’t they know they should explain things to kids??!! This other kid probably came joint 3rd in the last quiz in-take and got promised the place – least that’s what I’ve suggested to P…….

Don’t really think he’s convinced…but then, why didn’t he raise his arm and ask what was going on??? We went around in circles, with him not really seeing that he could have helped himself a little more….and eventually I told him he had to drop it (along with the tales of playground pushes and shoves) – I said he was at home now, with people who love him and didn’t want to hurt him. If he wants to tells us these things because it makes him feel better (the old fashioned version of blogging?), that was fine, but as he appeared to get more upset the more he talked about it – then it was time to close the door on it. Home is for relief from the real world, leave you problems outside and remember how to smile.

I think he did.

Least the red eyes faded, and he started chattering about the exam.

(I wrote all this before the exam, now it’s over……)

Well, what will be, will be.

P says he thinks he’s done okay, but that he failed. But then – P is always ready to believe the worst.

Sadly I’m too afraid to argue with him, as he really may have failed, and he has to prepare himself somehow. I simply asked if he’d tried his best, when he said he had, I told him that whatever the outcome – we couldn’t be prouder.

We should know in a week.

I walked the dog this afternoon with a friend, who reckoned this week would feel long – I hope so!!

We’re off on holiday all too soon and I haven’t got anything complete and ready for it. Work is chaos, the schools have a million things on I’ve managed not to miss by flying away this year, and I’m turning 40 and people are insisting I notice, ugh.

Still, Sunday tomorrow, umm why aren't I excited?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I was just going through some old emails.....

I’m not at work today. I could be, as there’s always work to be done – but I’ve found that I’m getting very little time to myself these days and so am trying to re-structure my time to get more from it.

I’m mainly achieving this by working Monday, Wednesday, and Friday until the kids kicked out of school. It’s panning out okay, just means the poor BH has to run home on those days and sort the Beast out.

And the Beast deserves a post all of his own – but I really don’t have enough time to elaborate just now ;)

Back to my point, as I’m sure there was one here somewhere…

The two days off I’m again getting, is spent rushing about like a headless chicken trying to figure out where to start.

Today is supposed to be house cleaning, but I seem to have got caught up here, (procrastinating?) and the only cleaning done so far is virtual…..

The old email I was originally writing about was from another blogger, and they made a comment about me suffering from depression in it. It’s from two years ago.

It’s got me thinking. Was I really that low? I’m still on my happy pills, still have days when I really don’t want to get out of bed, let alone leave the house – but I don’t think I have ever thought of myself as suffering from depression.

And I know plenty of other moms on happy pills, who also don’t consider themselves as depressed – in fact I was with one yesterday filling out a job application where we were discussing what she should write, as it specifically asks about mental health and medication.

We agreed that the world, and plenty of people in it, make us severely fed-up with life – but if they would all just vanish and stop irritating us with stupid ideas, plans, chores, commitments, and comments, we wouldn’t have a problem and wouldn’t need our daft pills!

Of course maybe this is depression and we’re jus deluding ourselves, but it’s a delusion which makes us laugh – which has got to be good for the depressed, right?

(and yes, she listed her medication on the application)

There really needs to be another word, as I do know people who suffer from depression – and my state of ‘fed-up’ness is nothing like theirs.

So on to brighter things, as that was the point. I may be miserable, old, tired, grumpy, and not want to do my housework – but I ain’t depressed!

Wayhay! Glad I got that off of my chest ;)