Hairs

I went to the store for a dog chain today and ended up also buying blue hair dye. Now, before you start telling me about not letting boredom make you change your appearance etc…let me tell you, I’m not bored. Ok, I might be a little bored with the whole rarely leaving the house thing, but I’m mostly frustrated at not having time to do more now that I am home 24/7(ish). I am also a teacher who loves bold, bright hair colors. I have an amazing administration team who is very open, very accepting, and very person oriented (as opposed to political agenda oriented); however, I bet that not even my amazing principal would be ok with me showing up blue hair with orange tips (and possibly roots, I haven’t gotten that far yet). I know that I am still distance educating, but I like to change up my colors over the summer and this feels like the time.

Here’s the kicker though, I bought the dye, got home, looked in the mirror, and thought, “Oh, my hair looks pretty good. I’m cute!” *insert forehead slap here*

Have any of you changed your hair lately? Hope that you are all well and safe!

A Day in My “New Normal”

I know that we have all had to adjust, or are still adjusting, to a new normal routine. Most of the world is changing with isolation, quarantines, and distance learning right now and where I live is no exception. While I am not someone who habitually goes out very often, several of my daily habits have changed significantly.

Some people may be asking themselves how much could have really changed in my life if I don’t usually go out and about. Well…I am a teacher. I no longer driver 30 minutes every morning in order to spend my day teaching reading, writing, and music to my tiny, tiny classes in my tiny, rural school. I don’t get to see my babies in person. I don’t get to finish the school year with my 8th graders, who will no longer be in my classes after May. I no longer spend my hour roundtrip listening to audio books with my 7 year old.

I now create videos and forms for my reading and writing kids on an online classroom. I was told that I did not have to create content for music students, just send links to videos. I do, however, have some videos of me reading music based picture books to my littles. We had to cancel our spring concert and we are all sad about it.

Instead of waking up at 6 am and rushing myself and the 7 yr old to get dressed, ready, and on the road, we wake up slowly on our own. I get extra baby snuggles instead of handing the 7 month old to her grandmother for daycare. That makes the classwork very interesting, by the way.

While people are helping their children with distance crisis learning (this is not technically homeschooling) I am creating content for my students…and also helping my 2nd grader do her distance learning…and also taking care of most of the cooking, cleaning, yard work, laundry, cleaning…my father is still mostly unable to do anything for himself and my mother mostly tries to lock herself in her room for alone time whenever possible (helping Dad and her online job takes a lot of time and energy). 3 adults, 2 kids, 4 animals, 5 very different classes to create and teach long distance and trying to watch tv/movies, read, write, or breath on my own. I leave the house about once a week. Most of my adult interaction came from my co-workers/school family so I don’t get ‘in person’ chats much anymore. Thank God for my snapchat, messenger, email buddies!

I miss my students. I miss taking my daughters out to places (we went on a walk last week but between weather and virus, we keep home). I miss being able to send someone else on errands because, right now, I am the only person leaving the house to go shopping or pay bills or any of the other myriad of things that need done.

That is how my days are different. How about you? Have your days changed significantly?

Adulting: The Game Show

Does anyone else ever feel like adulting is like the weirdest game show ever?

I am currently searching for a teaching job. When you’ve been interviewing and discussing possible classrooms and assignments, some conversations start making you giggle (hopefully to yourself). One such comment that has come across a couple of times is “you are a finalist for the position.” While that feels amazing to hear…it has also made me start feeling like I made it to the last step in a game.

Any minute now the deep announcer voice will come over hidden speakers and say something like: CONGRATULATIONS ELIZABETH! If you win, your prize is to be placed in a room with 15 mid-elementary students that you must teach mathematics, social skills, how to not pick their noses in public, and what a comma is used for. Good Luck!

And you know what, I really want to win this particular game!

Narrative Nonfiction: My Dental Distress

Have you ever heard of something called “Ludwig’s Angina”? No, No…ANGINA dear, mind out of the gutter please. So have you? No? Neither had I until a few days ago. It can be pretty scary stuff, involving medically cut throats, infections, possibly suffocation…Oh my, you are looking a little pale there. Are you feeling ok hun? Maybe we should try this a little differently: Ok then, what is it that the children say? Oh yes, STORY TIME!

It all started late on Thursday afternoon. As the work day wound down, my mouth randomly started to twinge. I took some ibuprofen and thought no more about it until the following day. Unfortunately, by the end of school on Friday I was drowning in pain killers. At supper I was unable to eat my French fries and I knew that something had to be done…so I got some tooth numbing gel and went to bed.

Saturday morning found me in pain, exhausted, and driving the two hours to my parent’s place so my kid could hang out with them. Though I had just woken up before making the trek, by the time lunch was finished I could barely stay awake.  I passed out immediately upon laying down for nap time, my daughter sneaking out to watch television with her Gaga.  3 hours later I woke up, still exhausted, still in pain, and with a new bout of swelling along my jaw and under my chin. Yes, under my chin. I looked a bit like a bullfrog. Mom immediately kicked me out and sent me to Urgent Care, where I was diagnosed with an abscess and given pain pills and penicillin. A few days later my dentist drilled a hole in the canine causing the problems, tsked at the amazing amount of infection and swelling (SO FAST! I’ve never seen something like this before!) and scheduled a root canal for the following week. Unfortunately, I wouldn’t make it that long.

Not only did the pain and swelling refuse to dissipate, it worsened. My dentist appointment had been on Tuesday; Thursday morning I awoke groggy, running a 100.4 temperature, and with even worse swelling under my chin…which was pressing on my throat and causing difficulty in breathing.

I called the dentist, I called my mother, and I took the kid to school and had them call a sub.  Two hours later, my mother checked the kid out of school, picked me up, and headed us toward a specialist.

With a brief stop to drop them off and swap to my dad driving, I made a 5 hour drive to the specialist. Who, after a cursory inspection, (I’ve NEVER SEEN THIS BEFORE!) called an oral surgeon and had us rush across town to the next office.

The oral surgeon (young, adorable…regretfully seeing me at my worst) comes back after his work hours and, when he could not convince me to go to the hospital overnight for antibiotic drip, finally removed the offending tooth. (SIDE NOTE: As he was numbing my mouth, the song “I can’t feel my face when I’m with you” came on. We shared a healthy giggle as the nurse’s looked on with confused worry).

Even after the removal, Dr. Cutie tried to send my to the hospital and it’s IV drips, but I out stubborned him and Dad and I set our wheels toward home. Per orders, and on threat on being taken back in for a tracheostomy if I provoked the swelling any more, I spent Thurs evening thru Sunday afternoon doing little more than sleeping and whining.

Though I probably should have taken more time off, I went on to school on Monday. Those first couple of days we hellacious. My mouth continued to pain me, the extra cuts left open to drain the infection making even the act of licking my lips excruciating. I had to sleep sitting up for a week, and wear a face mask in the classroom for two.

the swelling started to go down about a week after that first trip to the doctor, but even now (almost 3 weeks since it all began) the discomfort lasts.

According to all three dentists and one doctor (All who had “never seen this before”) I probably shouldn’t have been able to wake up that Thursday morning to get into surgery. Ludwig’s Angina  is reasonably rare and can lead to suffocation…if I had arrived to surgery as swollen as I’d been upon waking, a tracheostomy would have been the immediate next step.

I’m just happy to be able to hear a voice near me without the need to cry at the pressure of the vibrations hitting my jaw now.

 

*this has been a true recounting of the insanity that hit my mouth over the past few weeks.*

Midnight Thoughts of a Rambling Mind

Growing strong, learning what I believe. Drinking it in like sweet nectar and I am a newly formed butterfly, thirsty to know more.  Reaching and ever strengthening, my mind and body are as one as I find my pose and balance in life. Firm in the knowledge that my world, much like that tricky yoga pose, is completely figured out and I am totally myself. We are totally myself. We are growing in our truth and gathering strength and passion for our new discoveries. Technology, selfie sticks, a universal melding of minds…we are totally unique.

But Wait! How am I unique? How can I be me, if I am ‘we’…

I must break away. Do not jump off that bridge, you don’t even like that trend! Back Up, your soul is suffocating. Listen to it! Follow your dreams, wear Your clothes, write YOUR story…and good grief PLEASE do it without taking a staged, sad, pathetic attempt at a non-selfie selfie…or pictures of your ‘on point’ food, or that trendy place you DESPISE but shop at anyway because Vickie from the office does and she’s the boss’s cousin. And stop lying about Yoga, you can’t even do that pose where you just stand up.

Get Over It *mic drop*