I am sitting here posting this blog while a sweet little lady sits beside me watching Sofia the first for the 50th time and still loving every moment of it.  Yesterday for me was a particularly rough day.  I know I have mentioned it before but not recently that Dylan my oldest suffers from anxiety and yesterday was a rough one for them, if I am being honest it has been more like a rough few weeks for him.  After a long day at work, and then a really long afternoon with the kids I was ready to throw in the towel and be grumpy about it.  I was just ready to post on facebook and then I saw a post from the #teamrobby page.  His mom was posting (I am summarizing here) that she was taking her son home because although he had a horrible brain injury he could breath on his own but had to much damage and was not going to be able to be rehabbed.  So here was this mother talking about bringing home her horrifically brain damaged child who would never be a "normal"child again and how was she going to move on with her life.  Suddenly I felt like a really huge A-hole.  Yes my kid has some anxiety issues, and yes that makes my life hard sometimes but not hard like this mom.  I can't imagine the pain that she is experience having had a child who is perfectly healthy one day and the next be basically brain dead taking them home to give them 24 hr care for the rest of their life.

My thoughts then went to a friend of a friend who after nine months of a healthy pregnancy had some complications during birth (don't know and didn't want to know more of this horrific story than I already did).  The baby was severely brain damaged and had a spinal cord injury.  The parents had to make a horrific decision and decided it was best for the child to be given up to someone who could provide the child with the 24 hour medical care it would need.

Here are two people who are living any parents worst nightmare.  A perfectly healthy child (or baby) and then some horrific life altering accident takes away your hopes and your dreams and the essence that is your child.  My heart breaks for these mothers.  For a loss that I can not even begin to comprehend and selfishly do not want to.

I realized that in my moment of self pity-there are these women and hundreds just like them that would give anything just to life my life (even on my kids worst days) for a moment.  To have the joy that I get to experience with my kids.  To enjoy the quiet moment I am having right now with Josie watching Sofia (although she is currently jumping on the couch).  So I took my pity party and shoved it out the door.  Yes there will be bad/hard days with my kids, but I am blessed to HAVE days with my kids.  I am a very lucky duck!
nutritionellaIn hopes of getting my shit in gear in terms of my weight loss I decided to join a challenge to help keep me focused on an track from now until Christmas.  The challenge is run by one of my bloggers I follow Lindsay over at Lean Green Bean.  I am looking forward to really getting down to business.  I have been spending some time realizing that I am in a good place and despite that things are crazy and I can't always exercise when I want to what I do have control over is what and how I eat.  So my plan spend the next six weeks focused on me and getting healthy before the holidays!
As I get ready to have friends and family I felt that I should take a moment to share what I am most thankful for

So it has come to my attention that I may be a judgemental B.  I wish it wasn't true but I am starting to realize that I often judge people by just a few pieces of what I see about them.  I can't go into too many details because I am starting to realize that people in my real life actually read this blog but I will just give loose references to get my point across.

I know that I often judge people who have a lot of money.  I sneer at how they spend there money, think to myself how nice it must be for money to not matter and to be able to buy what ever it is your heart desires and not think about it.  I often judge and think that they do not live in the real world.  Yet if I am being honest, I am judging them because I am jealous.  I wish I could buy things like they do.  I wish I could live a lifestyle like that.  I am judging them for no other reason than jealousy.

Another example is political beliefs.  I am often admittedly to liberal for my own good.  I find myself casting a stink eye at those with a republican flair to them.  I often think how could a woman allow her rights to be taken away, how could someone not want to take care of those less fortunate in society.  Yet, in reality I am just unwilling to look deeply at my own beliefs and be willing to have them challenged by others

The final example is the one I will be most vague about.  I have cast a few unsightly judgements about some of the people I work with.  I often see how they interact with other people and cast judgements on them.  I know that recently I have done this a lot and I think it has to do with certain of my own insecurities.  I know that I am judging them not on my own personal knowledge of them but perhaps gossip or snap judgement by a few interactions I have seen them in. 

Well I was recently proven wrong and it has made me think that maybe I am a bit too judgemental.  I do think it is part of human nature to make judgments on people.  I just know that I am not happy with this aspect of myself.  I think that I need to stop getting wrapped up in gossip, my own insecurities/personal stuff, and snap judgements and really take a step back.  Take a moment in the case with the people I work with be sure I know the real them, in the case of the first two items to take a moment and think about why I feel the way I do.

I know this is a bit of rambling but it was something that I needed to get out and off my chest.  So what about all you...do you judge others more than you should?
Jayne Larson was an out of work actress and took a job as a chauffeur to make ends meet.  She had an amazing opportunity to make some great money but being one of the many drivers for members of the Saudi royal family.  Larson wrote about her experience in the book "Driving the Saudis".  I felt that this was an unique look into the lives of the Saudi royal family and their staff.  It was an amazing look into a group of people who we normally do not get a look into their lives.  There were two specific aspects of this book that I really enjoyed.  The first was that Larson talks about her own observations and reactions to working with the Saudis.  The reason I like it was because she spoke of her own gut visceral reactions to what she saw and experiences with this royal family.  I liked that she talked about those positive experiences she had with the family as well as some of those more non flattering aspects of life with the family.  The second aspect of the book that I really enjoyed was the relationships that Larson formed with the staff of the royal family.  The way in which she describes the staff of the royal family, their life, and how they dealt with their position with the family was amazing.  It made me feel connected to those staff members the way that she was when she was driving for the family.  There were a few flaws in my opinion with this book, I thought sometimes the structure jumped around a bit and it ended very quickly (which that is how her job ended) but I felt it needed a bit more closure.  That Boeing said I really thought it was an exciting look into the royal family and a lifestyle that most people never get to see up close.  I think Larson does a nice job of showing us her insight into his unique royal family.  Overall I would give the book 4 out 5 stars

Fat Girl-Fairy Boy despite its horrific title was a very original book that I highly enjoyed.  According to its publisher the book is "Is a Darkly Humorous Tale of Family, Friendship, and personal discovery".  The book follows a film star Frie and her gay stylist Robin Morris through an incredible journey of their kidnapping.  Although I really did like the story of their kidnapping, imprisonment, and then escape what I really liked more was the back story that the book provided.  Throughout the book, but mainly located in the early part of the novel was the early stories of both Frie and Robin.  Frie's early years look into her horrific childhood and her soon to be obsession with her looks, weight, and need for food.  For me it was an amazing look into the comfort and power that food can have and how even in the most beautiful women there is comfort found in eating and food.  Robin's back story was also fascinating and a look into the life of a child who has been bullied and his evolution from a wimpy little boy into a strong male by the end of the novel.  On the downside there were parts of the story that were a bit outlandish that I just wasn't buying into (Yes, I know its fiction).  Yet, that being said the character development in this story was really excellent.  Overall I would give this 4 out of 5 stars.  
Friday at work we were having a lively discussion at lunch.  We often do and sometimes that discussion turns a bit negative which it has to be...as any teacher knows that faculty room is a place to vent, get your frustrations out there so you don't unleash on a kid.  I usually take comments in that room for what they are...people venting etc.  I hardly ever take them personally or get upset by them.  Well on Friday one of my coworkers made a comment that got me so upset that if it had been made anywhere but the faculty room of my building I would have unleashed a wrath like no other.  The person who said it is not a friend exactly but not someone I dislike or have any issues with.  The comment they made came out of a place of ignorance as well as not thinking about how her comment came across.  The comment she made was referencing how as we blend our class levels together (putting the high level kids in with lower level kids) what parent would want their kid to be in a class with "those kids".  She then went on to suggest that "those kids" are the ones that bring weapons to school and do drugs.  I quietly replied before I could shut my mouth "umm...as if those kids are the only ones who do drugs" and she acknowledged that her comment was a bit unseemly.

Yet the longer I sat there the more pissed I got....I am not talking mad, I am talking pissed off Momma Bear.  "Those Kids" are the ones I have taught my entire career.  "Those kids' who may be in a lower level academically are some of the greatest children I have ever met.  "Those kids" are the reason I love teaching and I would teach "those kids" over an AP or honors class any day.  I know that her comment came from a place of not typically teaching lower level kids and mainly advanced kids.  Yet the longer I sat the more mad I got.

I began to think of my former students.  The young man who was always having a hard time keeping himself out of trouble in my room and in the building but tried his hardest because he had one goal...to be a police officer.  I just saw him a few weeks ago, driving his squad car around the town I work in.  He is now a member of town's police force.  Or I thought of another young man who was charming with a smart ass mouth who although smart didn't always apply himself.  He had a goal too...he wanted to a Marine.  He was recently severely wounded while serving a tour of duty protecting my freedom.  Despite his injuries now that he is recovered and he has made it clear that he plans to stay in the Marines.  Then there is my Billy, the boy who is like my son.  The boy who came to the hospital after Josie was born to check on me not visit the baby.  Billy who wrote me and my kids letters from bootcamp. The boy who when Ryan was ill mowed my lawn, racked my leaves, and shoveled by driveway.   The kid who is currently working on getting his EMT certification so he can be a paid firefighter instead of just the volunteer one he already is.  Billy who who while most of us sat in our houses during the hurricane was called up by the National Guard to help deal with the flooding along the shoreline.

All of these boys have an amazing sense of character, are great young men, and each of them I would consider a hero in his own way, and they all have one thing in common.


This is why I am so upset because for every kid who might meet that teacher's stereotype I have ten that  examples of students who have been amazing successful both in school and life despite the fact that they never took an honors class in high school.  I am a Mama Bear when it comes to "those kids".  Those kids are the reason I love my job and I am fiercely defensive of them.  How dare someone ever tell a child that they can or can't do something because of Thieu rank in school, how dare someone in a position of power judge a child just because of the classes they are in.  I will defend "those kids" with every breath I have the same way I would defend the children I have given birth to.  

I know that this comment was made jokingly and not as a direct attack by any means.  It just blows my mind how any teacher even on their worst day would say that about the kids.  Yes, some of them are bad kids-there are bad kids in every school and in every level of courses.   To lump one group of kids together just because of their academic ranking makes me sad...well lets be honest it makes me mad and sad.

This happened two days ago and I am still upset, still wavering between tears and wanting to throw things around in anger.  I know that I have to let this comment go-take it as a stupid comment by someone who is a good person- and I will let it go but just not right now.  I am a Mama Bear whose babies just got attacked it might take awhile before my fur goes down.

taking deep breath now and hoping hitting publish will make me feel better

As I mentioned last week I have been struggling on the weight loss front, ok let me be honest it can not be a struggle if you aren't trying.  So let me say I have been having a lack of motivation.  Today I had to stay home with my wee little lady.  We had to make an emergency trip to the doctor and it was scary but things are ok now.  So after reading a few blogs from some great ladies like Leslie @bodywontbreak and Jess @apilgrimsoul and there goals for the next month or so.  So I decided to really think about what I want to achieve.  My overall big goal is to hit onderland sooner rather than later.  Yet, I know the best best is to go in small chunks not related to a number on the scale.  So here are my goals from the rest of November
    1. Track every day from Nov 2-Dec 1
    2.  Drink 6 glasses of water a day
    3.  Exercise three times a week

Ok so there it is is...I will see where that takes me from there.  Happy November All