Editor’s Note: I wrote this in January with the intention of it being my end of year wrap up. It obviously never got finished and I never published. However, in hindsight I realize how 2009 really was only the precursor for the down right misery of 2010. Soon I will share with you the challenges we’ve been facing here at the Morley household but it really all started in 2009.
2009 was one of those years that came in like a lamb and left like a lion. Since it seems like the thing to do, here is my 2009 recap:
January: My little boy turned 3 years old which was shortly followed by him giving up his pacifier and then potty trained. It seems as if almost over night he went from baby to boy. This has made me realize that there isn’t a girl alive that will ever be worthy of enough to be with Max. He might as well resign himself to a lifetime of bachelorhood now because I can’t imagine anybody loving and adoring my son like I do.
February: Lucy turns 5 years old and we enrolled her in Kindergarten. Had I known then the amount of extra effort and commitment it was going to entail having my child enrolled in school I don’t think I would have signed her up. (I kid, I kid, don’t send hate mail). David and I also decide that since WE can’t decide whether to have a third a child or not we are going to give God six months to make the decision for us.
March: The beginning of March was marked by Max having a small visit to the hospital. A severe case of rotavirus left him dehydrated, weak and sick. If you’ve ever had a child so sick that hospitalization was required then you know about the parental torture you experience. Those were four of the worst days of my life. The good news is that I doubt Max will remember any of it. The bad news, I won’t ever forget. I don’t know how parents, who have chronically ill children, find the emotional strength required to face that torture day after day.
April/May: We took a short trip back to Michigan to visit the parents where my kids were once again reminded that going to my parent’s house is similar to visiting Disney World only without the crowds. Our visit included an “unbirthday” party that had a 200+ balloon drop, wind-up toy games, prizes, cake, hotdogs roasted on a carnival style roaster and candy. Seriously, how do you compete with that?
June: After purging our house of a baby crib, car seats, baby clothes, rattles, changing table, and all other baby accouterments we discovered that I was pregnant. You see God thinks the ironies of life are HI-LARIOUS. It is a whole “God joke” thing. Having suffered through a miscarriage almost a year to date from this pregnancy test coming back positive David and I were a bit hesitant. My doctor spent the first twelve weeks taking ultra-sound pictures every two weeks and indeed this is the most heavily photographed baby we have had.
You know how when riding a roller coaster the beginning of the ride is usually a slow steady climb before you garner enough inertia to whiz through the remainder of the ride? Well, the first six months of 2009 was the steady, slow climb.
July/August: The summer seemed to fly by. The kids went to “nana camp” and we spent multiple weekends at the lake house. I was trying to revel in the joy of Lucy’s last summer before her school year adventures began. I also tried to not throw up while teaching. I was a success on both counts.
September: I have to admit that this past semester of teaching was one of my most challenging. It felt like I was facing every possible obstacle and/or challenge imaginable. I was teaching with a new textbook that was awkward and clumsy. I had students who were uninspired and uninterested in being in class. Then, in contrast, I had students who were so excited to be there I seemed to have an endless flow of questions and demands outside of the class. I also met some AMAZING students who I hope will not fade off into the distance but continue to let me peek in on their progress and their lives. Granted, most semesters are like this, but this semester seemed to have large amounts of all of these things. I spent all semester feeling like I was behind and scrambling to catch up.
October/November: David and I bought our first house in 2001. The house was small, and inexpensive. Our plan was to stay here for five years. It has been nine. By November we purchased a new house – on a whim. We did not spend months looking at models or neighborhoods or touring with a real estate agent. We had been watching this particular neighborhood for awhile. And when a house came available that was unusually under priced for the area we bought it. We took a deep breath, looked at each other and took the plunge, knowing the hell that we were starting.
December: I wish I could just forget about December. The stress of final exam week, being seven months pregnant, trying to sell our house, and prepare for the holidays all during the same three weeks was more than my emotional state could handle. Everybody felt the ramifications of my breakdown. David and I spent most of December fighting and I spent most of the month crying. I cried all the time. I cried because of the kids. I cried because of school. I cried because of my students. I cried because of David. I cried because I was pregnant. I didn’t want to talk to anybody because just telling people what I was thinking or feeling made me cry.
Every storm reaches the end. The holidays found David and I basking in the warmth of family love and support. We left behind school and work and our house and spent time as a family and as a couple. We stopped fighting, started apologizing and realized that we weren’t mad at each other only stressed out. We dreamed about our new house and recommitted ourselves to the purchase of the new house. We’ve returned and let’s hope 2010 will find our family a bit more calm.