As I slog on towards the end of the school year, I am once again faced with the dilemma of whether or not to stick with the (free) online school that we have used for the last two years. I went through this debate last year and truly struggled with the decision…Stick with what I know, or go for what I would love to accomplish?
Honestly, the curriculum through K12 is impressive. My kindergartner knows his continents. My first grader is studying Greek gods. Last week, we learned about Monet. They know the word "solfege." They are learning a lot.
But I hate dealing with the school. I hate being told I’m not my sons’ "teacher," but their "learning coach." I hate feeling like I can never deviate from the plan because I might get a "truancy" letter. I hate feeling like we’re missing a lot of the joy of learning because I’m so hung up on getting through the curriculum.
People who spend a lot of time around us become aware, sooner or later, of the fact taht my husband thinks that I am a bit, um, Twitchy? High strung? Overly-cautious? Oh, wait, I know what he calls it…NEUROTIC. My husband thinks that I’m neurotic when it comes to the living things under my care. I tend to see most of my "neurosis" less as a negative thing and more as, oh, common sense*. (This is the part where I remind anyone who cares to listen that none of our children has ever lost a tooth on MY watch.)
And while there are times where I certainly wish that my husband would be slightly more *neurotic, I frequently remind myself that he is an intelligent adult and keep my mouth shut.
Then, there are times like last night.
Last week was my birthday. I am now thirty-three years old.
Let’s start with my feelings on that.
First, I have given it much thought, and I have come to the conclusion that I still qualify as being in my EARLY thirties. This is because when you first turn 30, you are THIRTY. Just thirty. No early, mid, or late thing going on. From there, the rest of the decade is separated into groups of three: 31-33 are EARLY thirties, 34-36 are MID-thirties, and 37-39 are LATE thirties. So, this year, I am still in my early thirties.
I don’t have to feel older until next year.
On the other hand, I have spent the week pondering the fact that Christ’s ministry lasted from the time he was thirty until he was crucified at age 33. And then I think of my past three years. And I feel WAY behind. Except for that part where I made two people. That definitely counts for something.
I am a mother through domestic adoption. I am also an aunt through international adoption. When I first became a blogger, I was surprised at the negative attitudes I frequently encountered about adoption. And I was completely shocked by the vocal advocacy of some bloggers against adoption altogether. The case against adoption was usually summed up in one word: CORRUPTION. And while there were certainly plenty of people with things to say against domestic adoption, the most heinous accusations of corruption were leveled at international adoptions. Accusations of kidnapping and baby buying. Falsification of records. Children being adopted who were only supposed to be in orphanages for a period of respite care.
When I first heard these accusations, I was highly skeptical of their validity. Sure, bad things happen. Corruption always exists. But, certainly, these examples were few and far between and not an accurate reflection of reality.
I don’t really believe that anymore. I think it happens way too frequently.
But I still don’t condemn international adoption.
About three weeks ago, my two youngest kiddos became very sick. VERY SICK. This was evidenced by the fact that I finally, after several days, decided to take them to the doctor. I almost never take my kids to the doctor unless they are going in for a scheduled check up. Or someone’s toe is about to fall off. But since they both had barely eaten in days and neither could stand up on their own (OK, that’s normal for Violet at six months old, but not so much for Eli), I finally called the pediatrician’s office and took them in. It was on a Saturday, or "take what you can get" day. My normal pediatrician wasn’t there. Instead, I got a young male doctor who is new to the practice. We’ll just call him Dr. Young, since I still don’t know (or care) what his real name is.
When I saw Dr. Young initially, he seemed to be pretty decent. Of course, I was stressed out and had only gotten, oh, maybe 15 minutes of sleep that week, so he could have diagnosed my kids with bubonic plague and I might just not remember. But he prescribed them both antibiotics (and then, not so endearingly, displayed a complete inability to properly send the prescription into my pharmacy) and seemed reassuring, so I left feeling mostly positive about him. I even scheduled the follow-up appointment that he said was standard. Now, I KNOW that an ear infection (what he ended up treating them for) does not require a follow-up. But given how sick they were, I decided that maybe it wasn’t such a bad idea.
Which brings us to today. And five quick and easy steps for how to lose a patient in 10 minutes.
Over the past two weeks, there has been much discussion about the ten Baptist missionaries in Haiti who were caught trying to smuggle thirty-three Haitian "orphans" (it is now known that most of them do have living parents) into the Dominican Republic. Some have hailed them as would-be saviors with the noblest of intentions. Others have condemned them as child traffickers whose egos have led them to believe that they can go above the law to take children out of their own culture and have them adopted someplace "better."
Both sides, to some degree, could be right but, as of tomorrow, it may be a moot point. According to a Reuters story released this evening, they are going to be freed without charges.
Now, let me start by making one thing clear: I think that these people were wrong in what they did. Further, I think that they should face charges.
But I have some serious misgivings about this situation.
About a month ago, I was asked if I would teach a couple of half-hour yoga classes for an activity at church on February 2nd.
Now, let me explain why that, in and of itself, was a humorous sentence.
I used to teach a yoga class at a local women’s gym. I was never TRAINED or CERTIFIED to be a yoga instructor. As a matter of fact, I had never done yoga until I started doing that very class at the gym. I just did it long enough that when the other teacher decided she didn’t want to teach it anymore, they asked me if I would want to take over. So, in my ever-so-qualified state, I proceeded to teach that class for about two years.
Then, I was in a really bad car crash.