A whipping wind day. A rain pouring down day. Both kids were bitchy, but they both got off to school. I worked hard all morning on a new drawing with an absorbed interest that fascinated me. By lunchtime when I had finished several preparatory drawings, I grabbed a peanut butter sandwich and ran for the beach.
The wind-dried sand was blowing across the wet surf sand leaving lines of white in the surf line. Millions of sea gulls were hunched into the wind. I leaned into the wind with them enjoying the wonderful few moments.
Mother was at the apartment when I got home, and she brought me five books on pen and pencil techniques. She took me on a hair-raising ride to the art supply store where she bought me real artist's pencils just like the ones I used to have when I was in college. She further buoyed me by telling me that she learned all her techniques by frankly copying the artists she admired. Now I shall copy away without guilt.
Raul to visit until midnight.
Lessa has been skipping school again which leads me to “confer” with the school this morning. Ugh! But the “ugh” is balanced by seven good hours sleep last night.
The therapist recommended Lessa stay in a home for runaways. We went with it. I called her school.
Joleen and I had a very important talk yesterday afternoon. She had been deeply hurt over the years by remarks I had made. They were judgmental and hurt, she said. I assured her that nothing I said was meant maliciously at all. Nothing I said was meant to hurt.
Lately I have been seeing her mainly as a friend to my friends, and I had been feeling left out. It was good to be able to say this to her. Jo told me that I had been introducing her as my friend, or my friend who collects artists, rather than as a writer. She had wanted to be called a writer. I couldn’t do this, I told her, for I have only seen two things she had ever written. Even I write more than she does.
She talked to Don about how she was feeling about me. Don said, “Tell her.”
Today, this spurred a communication between us that we have needed for years.
While we communicated, we had a constant battle with my usual influx of visitors, the kids, and Don. I just kept tossing them out as I felt that nurturing my friendship with Jo was the most important thing right then. We talked of our lives and our energies, our prejudices and bigotry’s, our children and our loves. We talked of the core group of us, and the peripheral people like Jim. They too affect us all.
Right at the end of the conversation, Raul and Will dropped in. Will was straight from the hospital and filled with painkillers for another migraine. We let them stay. I reintroduced Jo as my friend the writer, and she left with hugs and kisses. Pizza’s at Will’s house. Then Raul and I came here and talked my eyes drooping all the while. I wasn’t very good company. How well he fits me; how badly I fit him.
My background thoughts are constantly with me despite all the things I do or think. How to help my children become decent adults by the time they are grown, and thinking of my life alone after they leave home are the two most important things on my mind right now. The kids, at the moment, are my job. Sure, I want a life and love for myself as well as time to work on my flaws so I can be a complete person, but right now my whole focus is on my kids.
Basic nutrition. How to make the most of my ‘food money’ so that the kids get three meals, or that three meals a day are available to them. I have been strongly encouraging them to partake of them so that the disaster that happened to Lessa will not be repeated. I am sure that the kids just see me as a bitchy, old, complaining woman. I worry that Lenora’s stubborn streak will prevent her from opening up and learning some vital task that might help her to survive. I worry that Lessa’s irresponsibility will kill her sooner rather than later.
Is my idea of stability important? I have felt that keeping this apartment so that the three of us will have some constant is one of the most important things of all. Despite the cost, I decided to keep this place because the kid’s reacted so strongly when PAH moved so often. The repeated raises in the apartment rent have made this goal so very fragile.
Home from the “home,” Lessa doesn’t want to go to school. She tells this to all of us. Now she is going through the full battery of psych tests, and meetings have been arranged with the school counselors and our therapists to discuss the problem. A change of schools? My children must go to school. This is the only issue in my kid’s lives that I have not hemmed and hawed about. On any other issue, I will make compromises, but not this one. Even Lessa admits that, except for disagreements with her sister, she has no complaints with the house and its rules.
Continuation school is the solution, they tell me.
Lessa is home now from her first day at the new school. She loves it. Yea! Let us hope the honeymoon lasts.