Growing up Deprived and Overcoming The Anxiety.

Meet my friend Cain Quillman.

We will all eat popcorn and have a Kleenex box watching movies of his story journey through obstacles life has thrown at him. More importantly what he’s overcome.

Cain Quillman: YouTube Channel

Click here to watch his latest video.

The Bowl of Cranberries

From the kitchen he asks, “Are these cranberries any good?”

I replied that no they are not good and just toss them.

It dawned on me he was in there doing dishes. It’s 9:00 am on Saturday morning and he’s already at it. While I am sipping coffee and writing in my blog. Checking to make sure my emails from new business venture are coming through and prepping my brain for today’s agenda.

One client. Well let me rephrase that. More like one therapy session. Because truthfully I get more in my work then a satisfied eyelash client gets. I get friendships and camaraderie. I get to listen to each person share about a life story on a daily basis and that inspires me. I also get to share stories with each of them. I wouldn’t change my career for the world. My clients/friends have became my family.

What I chose to write about today was a thought I had yesterday about mental health. I have recently learned many new things about the areas involving abuse and trauma.

I look through my timeline with drinking and my timeline without. When I was told that trauma/ptsd is often evident in drunkenness I decided to do more research and compare some experiences.

Come to find out, it’s often triggered when the brain is stimulated by alcohol.

I can admit with brutal honesty the feeling of the fight or flight mode. It’s quite an interesting research project as well. In a moment of a trapped, caged, or captured feeling; A past memory is triggered and your brain tells your body to protect itself and run. Go. Get away so you can be safe.

I do believe in my opinion, law enforcement could possibly need more thorough training on mental health and addiction. Regardless of the person knowing better than to drink or do drugs, they should understand that the drunk is likely just protecting him or her self. An automatic instinct. I could be wrong but I often struggle to believe it took 3 officers and 3 tases to keep me down. Especially having been told how slow the alcohol had made me and that my trying to runaway looked liked a runner in slow motion.

But, it is what it is and I lost all credibility because I was intoxicated.

I understand that makes ones job in law enforcement more difficult, but I believe with all of my heart and soul, that dependent on the arrests, the experience alone can most definitely be a traumatizing one.

I think back to the end of my last relapse and I often think that it was a bit extreme on the officer’s part. I also believe they were just doing the best they could.

My relapse ended with three shots by a taser. Three times in a row because I would not stop and stay on the ground in my driveway. Was I drunk? Yes. Was I blacked out? Yes. Do I remember it? No. I recall the one tase and comparing it to being cremated alive.

I didn’t even know I went to a hospital to get stitches from my head that had landed with dead weight on the cement. Of course jail followed the stitches. I remember part of the shower experience and the smell of lice shampoo that every new inmate has to use.

I remember my head hurting while I laid on a thin mat on a concrete jail floor. No. You don’t get a pillow. I opened my eyes and saw a room full of women in the same color of jail scrubs that I was wearing. I remember the smell of blood and what blonde hair I had looked red.

A woman hopped off her top bunk and asked me who gave me a shiner. Apparently I had a black eye too. I felt my forehead and it was bandaged. I still had no memory of what it was from or why it happened. That’s the scary part of blacking out and waking up in jail. Had you killed someone? Drinking, driving and car accident? Hurt someone in a dark rage? Literally no clue and no one who could or would answer you.

I saw 2 silver toilets. Open to the public. Definitely not allowed to have any pride in a jail pod. I’d say there were 15 girls when I was in there. A couple of us waiting to see a judge. None of them knowing why I was there either. But more than willing to show me the ropes.

I still felt somewhat drunk. I had drank from early morning September 11th until the fall around 10:00 pm that night. ( according to the arrest report and my family) I wreaked of blood and booze.

What will be happening next? I asked another inmate. She explained that I’d eventually go before the judge and it would determine what my charges would be and if I would be allowed bail.

Be allowed bail? What in the hell did I do? Talk about torture for my brain.

I tried to enjoy the morning recreation time. Move from one concrete room to another concrete room that housed one television and one metal picnic table. I sat sick, dizzy and in pain on the floor as I tried to just put pieces together of why the hell I was there.

Does my husband know where I am at? What did my son see? What does he know. Is he okay? Is my husband okay. My coworkers. Oh my God I tried to work. I recall telling a very reputable, highly respected new client that I could not finish her lash session. It was a session for her wedding. God. Please tell me everyone is okay. Please God. I’m begging you to tell me I didn’t ruin everything.

That was a tiny piece of that experience in 2018 and you’ll be able to learn more because it will be in the book, Saké and Pot.

The last drinking binge. The day I woke up in jail smelling of blood and booze. Not to mention missing chunks of skin on my shoulder, and my legs and foot. Why are there burns on my belly and two on my back?

Chapter One. Damn It Man.

Why do you always get so drunk?

Well that’s a million dollar question now isn’t it? If you google it you can find many answers to why or what causes it.

Then why wouldn’t you just set a limit for yourself? You’re a smart person. You mean to tell me you can’t control your drinking?

You’re correct. I am a smart person and no I can not control my drinking. I tried that twice and failed and I believe it’s best I believe in the science and medical research that is proven that some folks just need to remain abstinent. I myself being one of those folks.

Sure I wish I could share cocktails among my peers at happy hour and take the edge off but I have a tape to play through first and it definitely does not show happy hour being very successful for anyone short or long term. You would all eventually quit inviting me because of the mass havoc I’d wreak.

So back to the original question as to why I get so drunk is because once I’m drunk my brain thinks differently than yours. My brain will do whatever it can do in order to stay that was as long as possible. It’s so euphoric and tingly good that no one would ever want to leave that state of mind numbing bliss. No one being this one. I wish I could just have a glass of wine. Hell, even a bottle of wine with impunity would be nice but it has proven on several occasions that’s not the way it works for me. Not wine, not Vodka, Whiskey, or fireball and definitely not Rum. Damn it man.

2020 @allofme592310406 Lynn Rilean Smith

https://www.ptsd.va.gov/understand/related/problem_alcohol_use.asp

See Reference from ptsd.va.gov below.

Buy It

2020 Smith, Lynn Rilean

He leaned into my left ear and whispered “Buy it.”

When I woke up today I had two choices. Stay in bed and be sad, again. Or get up, throw my hair into a greasy wad on top of my head, wear my best pair of pajamas to the Goodwill store downtown and drop off the last box of his shirts.

It’s been two years that I’ve struggled to part with this damn box. It’s full of his favorite shirts. One of them still smells of his cologne. I chose to keep it and hang it back up since he only wore it briefly.

God I miss him. I miss him so much. I can’t fathom walking into my closet and not seeing that box. What’s left of rational me knows what to do. But the grieving me is trying to pack rational me into a box like his shirts are in.

I agreed to start with the box first. My sister is a grief counselor in New York City. She says there’s no timeline for grieving and that only a basic graph of the grieving process exists. She also says not to be so hard on myself. The graph is based on experiences and research. She’s been comforting and annoying at the same time. I often just want to let the phone ring instead of answering it. I don’t want to talk about him like he’s gone. Why can’t they understand that?

I’ve not been ready to move out of mere existing. I faked my way through a date last week just to appease my concerned friends and family.

Today didn’t feel fake at all. Today I felt him beside me from the moment I woke up and stretched my way to the bathroom. I’ve been arguing with a ghost for 2 years now. I pee and he points his finger at me. I argue and shut him down. “No.” “I’m not ready to let you go.” I say loudly.

Every morning we have this same conversation. Day after day.

Please no. I’m not ready.

I stood in the mirror looking at this woman I’ve become. Barely a shell of what use to be. I usually see him reflecting back at me. “Where are you?” I chant. This isn’t what you promised me. You don’t get to just leave me here. You promised me coffee dates in bed every morning for the rest of my life. I’m here. You’re not. I’m angry. I’m sad. I’m afraid of my own shadow now because you were my backbone.

Usually I march to the kitchen and start a cup of coffee. Not today. Today I stood and stared at the laugh lines around my eyes. He added to them with his sense of humor. The black circles under my eyes reminding me he’s gone. He is fading more and more with each day that passes.

I feel like I have forgotten all my basic life skills. I see no point in a toothbrush if he isn’t here to kiss me. Who needs shampoo? Not me. Now that he isn’t here to remind me how sweet my hair smells, whats the point? I might as well donate all this body lotion and perfume with his shirts. Why do I need soft skin if he isn’t here to touch me anymore?

The people in my life keep trying to sell me things I refuse to buy. I understand they genuinely care and want what’s best for me but I’m not ready to buy any of it. I just want him back. He’s the only thing that ever made sense in my entire life.

I feel the water filling up my tear pails. Heavy and painful. I squint to release some of the pressure.

Out of nowhere he shows up and leans into my left ear and whispers, “Buy it.”

“Lou, please buy it.” “Buy it, he begs of me.” Buy everything they are selling you; I can’t stand to watch you hurting.” I feel a gentle pressure on top of my shoulders. As if he has laid his hands on top of them. I close my eyes and watch this scene unfold so I can memorize it.

He reaches his right hand up and strokes my hair out of my face. He leans down to kiss the corner of my forehead. I can’t quit sobbing. I feel like this is goodbye. How do I breathe without you?

I love you Lou. I’ll live forever in the laugh lines by your eyes. Now take the box. I don’t live there anymore.

Buy It

2020 Smith, Lynn Rilean

Buy It

He leaned into my left ear and whispered “Buy it.” 

When I woke up today I had two choices. Stay in bed and be sad, again. Or get up, throw my hair into a greasy wad on top of my head, wear my best pair of pajamas to the Goodwill store downtown, and drop off the last box of his shirts.

It’s been two years that I’ve struggled to part with this damn box. It’s full of his favorite shirts. One of them still smelled of his cologne. I chose to keep it and hung it back up since he only wore it briefly. 

God I miss him. I miss him so much. I can’t fathom walking into my closet and not seeing that box. What’s left of rational me knows what to do. But the grieving me is trying to pack rational me into a box like his shirts are in. 

I agreed to start with the box first. My sister is a grief counselor in New York City. She says there’s no timeline for grieving and that only a basic graph of the grieving process exists. She also says not to be so hard on myself. The graph is based on experiences and research. She’s been comforting and annoying at the same time. I often just want to let the phone ring instead of answering it. I don’t want to talk about him like he’s gone. Why can’t they understand that? 

I’ve not been ready to move out of mere existing. I faked my way through a date last week just to appease my concerned friends and family. 

Today didn’t feel fake at all. Today I felt him beside me from the moment I woke up and stretched my way to the bathroom. I’ve been arguing with a ghost for 2 years now. I pee and he points his finger at me. I argue and shut him down. “No.” “I’m not ready to let you go.” I say loudly. 

Every morning we have this same conversation. Day after day. 

Please no. I’m not ready.

I stood in the mirror looking at this woman I’ve become. Barely a shell of what use to be. I usually see him reflecting back at me. “Where are you?” I chant. This isn’t what you promised me. You don’t get to just leave me here. You promised me coffee dates in bed every morning for the rest of my life. I’m here. You’re not. I’m angry. I’m sad. I’m afraid of my own shadow now because you were my backbone. 

Usually I march to the kitchen and start a cup of coffee. Not today. Today I stood and stared at the laugh lines around my eyes. He added to them with his sense of humor. The black circles under my eyes reminding me he’s gone. He is fading more and more with each day that passes. 

I feel like I have forgotten all my basic life skills. I see no point in a toothbrush if he isn’t here to kiss me. Who needs shampoo? Not me. Now that he isn’t here to remind me how sweet my hair smells, whats the point? I might as well donate all this body lotion and perfume with his shirts. Why do I need soft skin if he isn’t here to touch me anymore? 

The people in my life keep trying to sell me things I refuse to buy. I understand they genuinely care and want what’s best for me but I’m not ready to buy any of it. I just want him back. He’s the only thing that ever made sense in my entire life.

I feel the water filling up my tear pails. Heavy and painful. I squint to release some of the pressure. 

Out of nowhere he shows up and leans into my left ear and whispers, “Buy it.” 

“Lou, please buy it.” “Buy it, he begs of me.” Buy everything they are selling you; I can’t stand to watch you hurting.” I feel a gentle pressure on top of my shoulders. As if he has laid his hands on top of them. I close my eyes and watch this scene unfold so I can memorize it. 

He reaches his right hand up and strokes my hair out of my face. He leans down to kiss the corner of my forehead. I can’t quit sobbing. I feel like this is goodbye. How do I breathe without you? 

I love you Lou. I’ll live forever in the laugh lines by your eyes. Now take the box. I don’t live there anymore.

Buy It

2020 Smith, Lynn Rilean

Remember that time when…..

2020 Smith, Lynn Rilean

You do remember right?

The day they sat us down to tell us mommy and daddy couldn’t get along?

That it would all be okay and everyone will eventually move on.

The day the bags were packed and thrown into the trunk of a car.

Don’t cry sweetie.

Your daddy won’t be far.

Remember when mommy played music really loud so you couldn’t hear her cry?

I knew she was extremely sad but I wouldn’t have understood why.

Today when I look back, I’m glad I didn’t know.

I’m glad my brain pretended we were only in a show.

It will be okay tomorrow when the next episode comes on.

We will be back in our beds at home as the sunset turns to dawn.

The same episode aired over and over and over again.

I wrote this within 5 minutes of being reminded of something. How easy we can forget. I don’t know if it is an age thing and years just erased that part of my memory or if I blocked it out.

Regardless of the reason I can write these feelings so easily. The hardest part of my life was reaching a place I could forgive myself for not understanding something I wasn’t even supposed to know.

Life is most definitely going to knock the breath out of you more than once. If you’re lucky someone will be there to walk beside you helping each episode make sense.

I’ll tell you this last bit of advice, no one knows exactly how you feel. It’s not possible. I have found that I get answers I may be seeking from those whom have been strangers to me most of my life.

I look out at the sky with a crooked grin and inquisitive eyes.

As long as I can remember what it’s like to be the weeping child with a broken heart I will always be able to offer you the 10 best bits of advice I’ve ever been given. #1 is the most important.

1. Child, it is not your fault.

2. It will always bring a feeling of sadness.

3. You are allowed to take as long as you need to understand something.

4. You can’t know what you don’t know.

5. Surround yourself with positive people.

6. You only need one person to make a difference.

7. The world will take care of itself.

8. You may grow to be codependent like I did, but you will find your backbone when you need it most.

9. Anything can change nothing. Anything can change everything.

10. You can change the world but you don’t have to. If you can change the world for just one person you’ve done more than most do in a lifetime.

Without the ability to reason with myself I’m a mere puppet to my past, present and future.

I can’t expect to communicate with anyone on the same level that has not experienced life the same way as I have.

I can’t expect someone who has never lost a child to know what that feels like.

I can’t expect someone who’s never been caught in an ugly custody battle to understand what it feels like to endure that kind of misery.

I can’t tell you and expect you to understand, comprehend, feel or express to me anything that you haven’t lived.

Compassion ~ yes.

Understand ~ no.

At this point it is when we ourselves have to realize communicating clearly to someone who has no experience in something we’re talking about will not be of the same level of understanding as someone who does.

How guilty I believe we all are of expecting others to read our mind and understand exactly how we feel something.

The more I get to know myself the more I see me instead of who you wanted me to be.

The more I get to know you the more I get to learn about my character.

Am I kind? Am I patient? Am I full of sarcasm? Can you push my buttons easily? Am I really secure or consumed by insecurity. Can I truly listen to hear?

What areas of me don’t I like and am I willing to change?

That willingness to change is a doozy when our egos have protected us for so long.

Long story short~ don’t communicate with me and expect me to communicate back on your level because I know chances are you will never be able to communicate with me on mine. No matter how much research you do. No matter how many movies or true stories you read. No matter how different your bruises looked from mine. No matter how old you were when and if your parents called it quits. No matter who hurt who the most. No matter if you had 20 siblings or none. No matter the level of genius in your brain that mine is lacking. No matter the most expensive cheese or the commodity cheese.

I’ll tell you, I never knew what expensive cheese was until I was well into adulthood. I was never going to know what fancy expensive cheese meant until I’d had it.

Let’s do more learning about another’s language or level of comprehension before we speak to them in depth because often when the conversation’s over one is left feeling dominant and superior and the other exits feeling like the village idiot.

I personally relate more to the misfits. The misfits wear their heart on the outside and feel everything deeply.

I’m not sure but maybe the rest of the people just haven’t had to yet.

I had the best conversation with a 94 year old Veteran this week. What I did when I listened to him was learn more than I ever would have from a book. I learned about plants. It was relayed to me in a language I understood. He knew from experience how to share and express it to me in a way I connected with. He didn’t get upset with me when I didn’t understand the first time. He was patient and slowed it down a little. He saw how I was clueless about the care of my plants this winter because it was the first time I was going to experience it. Not one time did he get or appear irritated at my lack of understanding.

Do I believe we’re all equal? No.

Color, race, sex, whatever okay sure yeah.

I’m not talking about that.

A 5 year old will never know what it is to be 10 until they are 10. Just as a 20 year old will never be equal to a 30 year old or above.

Your intelligence and lack of experience over or under mine will always separate us. My anxiety will always be different than yours. My mind is my gift and yours is yours. What we do with those though is what determines our goodness.

I’ll never be better than you. I will have worked hard. I’ll never be wealthier than you but I will have worked hard. I’ll never be able to read as well as you but I will have learned my best. I’ll never score a touchdown like you but I will have ran my fastest. I don’t need a trophy for doing my best if you out ran me. Fair and square, you were the faster runner.

There’s equal and equality.

There’s better and there’s morals.

There’s ignorance in opinions.

There’s more opinions than there are ethics.

A whole lot of pride and better than someone else is sitting in a trust-fund while others struggle to depend on a broken government that allows even a millionaire to cut corners and receive food-stamps.

Please tell me how equal we all are and on what grounds you believe this?

I’ll tell you it may take me awhile to understand your response because I’ve no experience inside your mind. I will do my best.

I can not wrap my brain around all of us being equal. When we aren’t even all born the same color. Different colored eyes. We grey differently and we damn sure all learn differently.

To all be equal is to tell a man who fought in the war holding a limbless fallen soldier in his arms that his life and his risks are as equal and just the same as the man ( 20 years old) who never had to get dirt under his fingernails as he sits and eats his Doritos chips, playing video games with his brand new Adidas tennis shoes Aunt Jo Jo bought him.

Pay and equality. Pay and lazy. One chooses to sit at home spending until the money runs out and other’s choose to work hard to have barely enough. Some keep working even harder. We are not equal across the board. We do NOT deserve equal pay and benefits.

I think the only thing that should matter when someone looks at a wealthy mans taxes is the donations to charity. Look at the causes he stands for and supports. I think what you give away because you can and you want to is a good way to pick a tiger by the toe. Judge a good character.

I don’t believe if you earn a million dollars that should have to pay for my loaf of bread. I should be able to earn my own loaf of bread. There are cases where even mentally challenged individuals are able to work and earn spending money. They enjoy having earned money. There are other’s who are incapacitated and are unable to earn. That’s where the system can come in. Wealthy people are always in need of tax write offs. Maybe people could campaigns for donations to help fund the incapacitated. Regardless of that last bit; It is not the wealthier who should have to pay for my electric bill each month. I want an honest living with honest wages. If you raise minimum wage and not the middle class wages, you will lose more than you can fathom in small businesses. I will not be able to continue my career because most of my clients are middle class and once my products go up and my taxes increase they will not be able to afford to continue receiving my services therefore I will struggle and eventually have to find something else to recover my losses somehow. Can someone explain to me how that is fair? Can someone show me where that is wrong and not at all what will happen?

I work hard but I give harder. I strive to give more away and to eventually have less. I don’t plan on getting out of here alive so why do I need to carry so many thing’s around.

It’s my choice to keep little. It’s my choice to keep big. It’s my choice to buy expensive thing’s with money I’ve earned. It’s my choice to go to designer clothing store or to the consignment shop. The Goodwill has good sales. Just sayin.

What does close minded even mean? Why won’t someone with more of a closed mind not understand any of what I have written? Because it goes against whatever they believe. My hand is up. I’m guilty of being close minded. If you’ve never been then my hats off to you.

What I’ve written above leads me to wonder about so many different views over topics that make my mind spin.

Row vs. Wade for example. Republicans want to abolish abortion. Democrats don’t. I myself have laid on a gurney in an abortion clinic. I was 18. I had my reasons. ( not a birth control method ) I experienced thing’s during that time I never hope anyone has to experience. The emotions alone after something like that are haunting. But…….I disagree with taking away a woman’s right to choose. Should there be some restrictions? Yes. But abolished completely? No.

How is it that man can be in a position to create a plan for a woman and her right to carry a child or not? Technically that alone should change in my opinion. I could complicate this entire subject so I’ll quit for now. We all have our different views. But a man can’t even conceive a child. Therefore I’m not favoring the mans right to tell me after he’s assaulted me that he wants to keep the child. No. I’m not in favor of that. God or no God.

So many things this world has to offer. So many good and bad things. Some things are choices. Some are not. Always evolving. Life.

We’re not all equal. Thing’s that matter most, yes. Color, gender, sex, etc.

But on the same playgrounds? No. Can every single color play on the same slide? Absolutely. Do we deserve equal opportunities if we perform equally? Yes. Do we deserve the same if one is more brilliant and works harder than the other? Harder worker, more loyal and dedicated to a job? No. I assure you that you would not want me operating on your heart. That Dr. deserves much more pay than I do. I couldn’t even comprehend a medical text book at this point in my life.

In school I always wondered why my neighbor never had homework from the same class and why I cried trying to do mine. We were different.

I never knew how to raise my hand without crying and saying, “please help me” because I don’t understand something. We were different yet I had to know how to comprehend the same book as you did.

I never knew it was okay to be different. I never knew how to be the same. Funny thing is, now I enjoy being different and I enjoy working hard and asking questions.

As a young child I was always striving to be better because I never saw myself as good enough. I never want that same pressure on my grandchildren. I’ve already passed off my own insecurities to my children and they were left to dig out of them and become their own-selves. Hard to watch sometimes when you know that nothing you do can or will make their decision making through life any easier.

It wasn’t until I had cracked my head open that I began to discover how close minded I was. Who enjoys not being right in a world we are always striving for more in?

What if the woman who doesn’t drink is right? What if her saying to me that I have to learn the importance of picking my battles could turn my life around? What if for an example, I woke up and was facing a lifetime in prison because I was so close minded that I couldn’t play the tape through to the end and I drove instead of calling an uber. Close minded people are a lot like drunk people. We know it all and you likely can’t change our minds. We want you to prove everything to us before we might consider you’re right. Even then likely we will sulk in our ego and still find your proof is inadequate and we end up facing life alone or in prison because it was more important to us that our way was the best way. Only to discover it wasn’t.

I’ve written all of this as usual jumping from one subject to the next maybe confusing you.

I hope what that tells you is I’m this person and how you treat me because of it ultimately tells me the kind of person you are.

“The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in mind at the same time and still retain the ability to function.”

— F. Scott Fitzgerald

I love the works of Fitzgerald. He and I relate mainly in that I know my way is not the only way. Even when my ego wants to argue with me.

It’s impossible to be the same.

But being kind to each other IS most definitely doable. Apologizing when we are wrong is doable. Loving people with feelings of inferiority is not easy, but it too is doable.

If you can learn the language of someone who deeply battles with feelings of inadequacy you will be able to enjoy them more. Value where they are coming from when they speak to you. Respect they learn differently, speak differently and comprehend differently.

Just as we are willing to learn the Five Love Languages and the Four Agreements. We can learn the language of the literal, critical and abstract thinker.

My opinion after a weekend of deep feelings and reading material. I say this all now based more on my personal experiences then those someone else has written.

We can’t be equal. Not one person knows what it is to be in the mind or body of someone else. How you treat other people is definitely what matters most or we would never have to face making amends. Not you nor I will or can ever be Webster dictionary perfect. Our actions show the whole world who we are. Nothing we can ever say makes the big differences we think they do. What we DO most definitely changes everything.

That’s coming from the little girl who didn’t know why her mom and dad were getting a divorce. Still to this day don’t even have a memory that they sat us down to tell us.

2020 Smith, Lynn Rilean

Calling in Sick to Homeschool

2020 Smith, Lynn Rilean

I’ll warn you now this entry gets personal. I lighten it up but I also share deep seeded truth and fact from a piece of where I come from.

It’s 5:00 am and I have new titles this morning. I’m a teacher and a 4th grade student.

Dear God, Help me now. I think I’m going to call in today. NOT.

I can read and write. My vocabulary is fairly on point. I look forward to the reading part of this task but not too excited about the math. Saxon math to be exact. What in the wild earth is Saxon Math? Do they have a Saxon math for Dummies book that I can read first?

4th grade. Day 1. Waiting on bell to ring. 🤷‍♀️

I scuffle through my 9 year old sons back pack. Organized, yet quite obvious that took some help. Once crumbled up in big wad balls for the trash papers now appear somewhat smoothed out and locked in a 3 ring binder like a professional student.

My sons father and I share custody so we are also sharing online learning at home. My first round starts today.

I wasn’t sure how to feel when I saw a progress report for the first 9 weeks that showed an F. Especially when the school has now sent them home twice for Covid19 precautions. That means 4 weeks already taught online at home under the watch of his parents.

Insert, Serenity Prayer here now.

Accept the things I can not change. No worries. We got this.

Have you ever watched someone with no teeth take a bite of steak?

Throwing this curve ball into my routine feels a bit like that image. A doozy this one is for me. Will I be able to gnaw away and eventually reach some level of safe enough to swallow without choking progress today?

Nothing I love more than learning new things. However, I’m 46 and I do not even remember 4th grade at all. Maybe it was when Mr. Sanders was my teacher? Grandma flirted her way through my time there. Homemade treats and giggles at the desk on party day.

Wait. No. It had to be Miss Billy Todds class. She was allergic to the sun and as white as a ghost. Super cranky that one was. Obviously needed some sunshine. She’s the one that made me question why people become teachers when they have no personality. Mean like the witch in The Wizard of Oz.

Needless to say, with so many different schools and teachers it’s hard to remember 4th grade at all.

Oh well. None of that will even matter today as I gear up for my first day of elementary school again. I even get to sit next to one of my favorite people. My 9 year old mini me.

Computer out. Head phones polished. Internet connection strong and………… now what?

Okay. Teacher. Teacher. Where are you?

Ground control to Major Tom. Hello. Is anybody in there? Nod if you can hear me. Is there anyone home?

Yeah. It’s like that.

Here goes nothing. I threw my favorite bathrobe on, because I remember how cold classrooms were back in the old days. A girl has to be warm.

My son. “Mom, it’s not pajama day.”

Me. “Son, everyday until approximately 10:00 am is pajama day.” He looks a bit weirded out by my reply and explains that I might get in trouble for not wearing normal clothes.

Normal clothes? 4th grade? What in tarnations are normal clothes now a days? Obviously not my bathrobe but hey, it’s my first day back. Lighten up on your old mom would ya. Do you at least appreciate that I did my hair?

Pig tails like Gramma use to give me for school.

Welp, wish us luck. I’m about to go to school in the comfort of my own home. I’m also about to get schooled by a 4th grader.

Will be back to update this entry later.

An hour in. SCHOOL SUCKS.

Nothing, I mean nothing at all, has made me feel as dumb as I do after our first hour. We have virtually achieved little. Called teacher. Everything was foreign language. My son says he is done and thatall assignments are completed because there were no assignments. Um. Not quite little man. We’ve been in the wrong app.

Oooooooo Calgon? Where is Calgon?

Over the half way mark of todays first day back to school. I know I sounded quite unhappy earlier. I keep forgetting what I feed my mind is what my mind tends to follow. But, it was a rough start. So that’s fair.

We did manage to find the assignments. We have now completed 3 lessons, 3 quiz’s and 2 tests. Would I want to be a teacher? My answer is still NO! Elementary school teachers need a raise. I don’t believe they get paid enough.

Is having him run laps corporal punishment for paying attention? Just kidding. He actually is doing better than me with this focus thing we have got going on.

The day came and went fairly quickly once we got the hang of it. Now the hard part is letting him do it all himself. You don’t believe that do you? Yeah. Didn’t think so.

If I had to grade today I would give us a B.

B for Bring it on. 💪🏼

Day 2 ~ was not much different than day 1. A lot of navigation errors on our end. I would like to make a suggestion for the elementary school age children that are struggling as I sit back and watch my son get frustrated. Don’t be so hard on yourself for getting an answer wrong. Chances are you didn’t even see the lesson first so the mistakes are legitimately not your fault at all.

It is complicated trying to find all the info you need. Yes. It is there somewhere. But so much time is spent searching for it, that by the time you land on a place you think you need to be then it’s time to move on to something else.

If they could all work in one program that would be great. At least until Jr. High. Maybe? Just a thought as I myself have never felt dumber.

Day 3~ I’m not sure how to start my thoughts on Wednesday ~ half way through. Thank you sweet baby Jesus. I bet the teachers regret that I have their personal cell phone numbers. I am most definitely working those chat lines. So far they haven’t blocked my number.

We managed to make progress yesterday. I shared my very strong opinion with one teacher. I have yet to hear back from her.

She felt my son was doing great now because he had been sent for swats at school before they closed down for Covid19 precautions, again. Which by the way he had been sent to the principal for swats on more than one occasion. His father and I share custody and the info shared with me is limited. I intend to see that change. Of course he has shown improvement. I’m by his side. I leave his side and he accomplishes little because the programs confuse him. He doesn’t even know how to find half of his assignments.

I have watched and learned with my son for 3 days now.
Allow learning to be fun. He is honestly one of the funnest teachers I’ve ever had.

I’m just as confused as he is. Maybe more. But we are making great progress now. I keep repeating that to him. I even explained not everyone will pat you on the back so tell yourself, Great Job.

I’m letting him teach me and I have been fortunate to be home with him this week.

What a wonderful world it would be if teachers had assistants to help in a classroom. So more students could have a little extra aide in the learning process. If it weren’t for other older kids coming into my elementary classroom to help my teachers there is no telling what my grades would have been. I likely wouldn’t have won a Spelling Bee either.

Laws have changed so much and it is sad that they have to take from the children when the children are what need the most protection. Classroom sizes, materials, safety, teachers. What is next? Take away school desks and make them sit on the floor? Feed them fried beans and potatoes at lunch?

I have heard, read and now this year am fully aware of the lack of professionalism that walk the floors our children do. They come with a degree in education and a background check with a thumbs up allowing them to tell us what to do to help our kid’s. Follow me here.

A principal. Fired. Nudity over the school server. Teacher. Kindly asked to resign over similar circumstances. Teacher allowed to move and teach in another state. Ohio to be exact. Teacher’s and students engaged in romantic relationships. No. Not all teachers. Just like not all cops. Just like not all people. Just like not all priests, babysitters or parents.

I look back and recall my friends and I drinking with my high school teacher. He was so cool. Cough, Cough. As his private part is stabbing you in the back. He was twisted and had no business teaching. Pretty sad when in order to have a feeling of safety and security in a classroom or school setting you’re considered the cool kid if you party with your teachers. Nothing about that adds up to make any sense. Absolutely disgusting. That is about it.

Why are so many parents choosing other alternatives and lack faith in our school systems, all our systems in general? My experiences from the past and now with the pandemic panicking and protocols I can’t help wonder. If Elon Musk can design a car to drive itself then maybe he can create a virtual teacher that is safe and makes sense at the same time? My opinion is keep your damn paddle to yourself and if my son is being distracted easily let’s talk about all the options. My hands are tied co-parenting with a custody agreement out of Mayes County. ( No change of venue in sight ) You do not rock a boat you know is going to drowned your child. Or I assure you this would NOT be happening like this. When is it a Principal or a teachers responsibility to advocate in a domestic? Is that even a thing anymore? Too afraid of lawsuits so they sit on their hands quietly.

Listen Linda~ children have love languages too. Mine gets more from positivity and affirmations then he does your principal and her paddle. I’m not anti- butt whoop. I am anti- lazy. I know what hitting me did. You become numb to it. Same for some of those closest to me and countless others. We build more prisons instead of closing and tearing them down. Why? Because a corporal punishment system works? 🤔Nah. I don’t see the proof. Not today Satan. If you only knew what it’s like for that kid when he gets home after he had swats at school. Maybe you would re-think that trip to the office. When you see his fear maybe it isn’t of the paddle. That’s the least of his worries. Maybe it’s the wall he will be bounced off of when he gets home. Don’t think that happens more than not? There is always more than one side to a story. Overhaul a system. I agree but the focus is on the wrong system. Especially when an entire county and school district is corrupt. No one listens to the truth anymore. They listen to the amount that follows the dollar sign when it comes to anything involving the laws of anything.

I have to say this and make sure that I am clear. Just like anything else. One bad teacher does not mean all teachers are bad. I had some of the best teachers and my children have been blessed to have had some of the best. But, if you’re drinking with your teacher I assure you that teacher is not cool. Speaking of drinking. Where is my coffee. It’s almost time to start day 4.

Parents, listen to your children. The bully doesn’t have to be another child. The bully could have a masters degree in education. The bully could be a parent.

Day 4~ Let’s do this. A focus band and a day full of the best we can do starts…………. Now.