In pajamas,eating homemade soup,waiting for my man to come home just before the stroke of midnight…

So off we go into a new year. It feels like a big one.

HT is changing. He’s kind of stepping into himself. Figuring some things out. I won’t go into detail, because it is his stuff, but it’s good. A little frightening at times, but good.

Then there is the fact that we will begin homeschooling Riley in, oh, four days. Seth is seriously leaning in the direction of joining us. At first he wanted no part of it. He loves recess and his friends at school. But as we’ve been making plans, preparing curriculum, he’s been walking around with a wrinkled forehead, fretting about not wanting to miss any of the fun we’ll be having at home. He’s a wreck. We finally had to tell him, “Mommy and Daddy will decide.” He seemed relieved not to have to make such a heavy decision. But now we have to! Part of me thinks it would be great to start with just Riley, one on two (Todd is home ’til 12:30 each day to help). Kind of get our rhythm. The other part feels like if we’re going to homeschool, we’d better be a homeschooling family and get our feet firmly planted in one world and not go back and forth between the two. It will be an easier transition for Riley if she doesn’t have to pick Seth up at school everyday. But Seth has a lovely teacher this year, and he’s doing really well.

As parents, do we ever know anything for sure?

Some feel they do. 

I know one woman who with absolute conviction, “beats her kid’s ass” for serious transgressions.

She’s not wondering if it’s okay. Or if there is a better way. Or worried about what people think of her. Or terrified about the effects of her parenting on her child’s future.

How does she do that?

I worry about everything. Not just the kids either. I worry about telling the truth. Is it okay to say what I think? Even if others don’t agree? Even if it pisses someone off? Is it brave or is it just asking for trouble? Is it attracting more of what I don’t want? I’ve had experiences of saying or writing what I thought only to face painful backlashes. Sometimes later the person thanks me, but not always. I’ve taken a whole lot of heat in the truth telling process in my life. Sometimes I just stay quiet, but that feels suffocating and cowardly. I hope to get more clear on this in the new year. When do you speak up? When do you walk away. Who gives a rip what I think anyway? When are things just none of my business? Then, isn’t that the point of relationship and of writing? To toss ideas around and say what you think, and learn from the interactions?

I need to seriously lighten up.

Who cares if I make mistakes?

Who cares if I piss people off?

Who cares if I beat my kid’s ass? KIDDING!

I’m not going to beat my kid’s ass.

Aha! Finally, something, I know for sure!

It’s a start.

Happy New Year to all of you who ponder with me. 

Lovingly yours, 


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10 Responses to In pajamas,eating homemade soup,waiting for my man to come home just before the stroke of midnight…

  1. Betty says:

    I wonder if I’m doing the right things for my children all the time. I think good parents do. I pray that when I do something wrong, my kids will understand and forgive me because they know I am human and not perfect.

    For whatever it’s worth, I think you are doing the correct thing by homeschooling Riley. I think Seth needs to stay where he is at school for right now; you can always home school him later if need be.

  2. jess wilson says:

    i have no idea how those people do it. i question EVERY move i make. i even question the questioning. it’s what we do.

    happy new year, my sweet.

  3. Amanda says:

    Like it says on my dishwasher (so it must be true!) Wonder is the seed of knowledge.

    I for one wonder what’s in your head. Looking forward to hearing more of it in 2010 – and all about the home schooling, the dog, life chez O’Neil…

  4. Wanda says:

    Wow…HT stepping into himself. More? Yes. To the extent that you get to share stories, I am looking forward to hearing them. And…not that you are taking a vote, but in the vein of speaking my truth, I agree with Betty about the home schooling. And…I look forward to hearing your process and your decision. Questioning is good.

  5. Chloes Mom Mary says:

    Happy New Year to you and your family.

    I always, always wonder if I am doing the right thing, especially with Chloe. I am finally accepting, after 19+ years that this is how it is. You are not alone in this matter.

    I truly believe you are on the right track with Riley.


  6. Carrie Link says:

    Yours in the pondering,

  7. Jerri says:

    Like you, I am a ponderer. Like you, I search for the few things I know for sure. Like you, I will not beat my child’s ass.

    Like I still could…. Ha!

  8. goodfountain says:

    I question everything I do. I have a friend who jokes that I have spreadsheets of data on my kids that I use to make decisions.

    No decision taken lightly, even if the outcome either way will not be affected.

    It’s torture at time!

    I wish a Happy New Year to the O’Neils!!

  9. amber says:

    Oh my gaaaawd, I know!!!! I worry. About.Every.Single.Choice. I can’t believe some of these people who don’t seem to! Whaa? HOW do you not do that?? And like you, man, I could stand to lighten the eff up. I know. I know.

    Last year, I had my chart read, and the whole thing was about “knowing when to talk”, “knowing when to speak up, and knowing when to let it ride”, and “Waiting”. I so felt it, too, all year. I was so happy I went into it with that insight, because I KNOW I would have been a lot more high strung if I hadn’t had that in my mind.The whole house thing woud have made me more nuts!

    This year my chart was all about “Letting go and clearing out”, and “going forward” with my own goals and truths. And I feel that, too.

    You are intuitive. Maybe you are just feeling your “theme”.


  10. Kim says:

    I worry about every little thing to! the big decisions, the little ones, everything in between. I hear ya!

    Happy New Year!

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