Small Town Tragedies

Small town tragedies
12/29/14
Less than a week ago a tornado hit the outskirts of our neighboring town wrecking havoc. Lives lost, homes destroyed, business torn apart. Driving through there on Thursday as we went to the coast brought back visions of the coast following Katrina. Tin tossed into what remained of tree tops, notices on Facebook of pictures found on the other side of town, photos of the young girl who lost her life, leaving behind a young son and a grieving husband. These are images one shouldn’t have to see around the holidays, especially Christmas–that time of year we celebrate the birth of our Saviour, that time of year of giving and putting others first.
Then last night the prayer chain request came through-a young life had been snuffed out. Age 15, the son of a mother who had lost her life just a few years back in a fatal car accident. This young boy was visiting a friend, they were looking at a pistol when it went off taking Devin’s life. So young, yet gone. I think of his grandparents who were raising him, his twin brother and older sister. There was an older brother but I believe he was grown already. Grandparents who had already laid to rest their only daughter.
My own granddaughters grief stricken, trying to make sense of it all. We stood tonight in the circle of people gather at our local school for a vigil in honor of Devin. I heard the prayers for peace, for understanding, for comfort. I wondered where would that come from for these young people who are struggling with accepting the loss of a friend along with their own identities and purpose in life. I listened as young men, 15 or so years old, stepped forward and expressed their loss, their love for this young man gone from us and offered up their thoughts on why and how God allowed this to happen. I heard the grief take over as one young man broke down and cried–yes under the cloak of darkness but exposed yet by his voice and still not concerned about what others thought. Awesome! Being able to express their thoughts and grief during such a time will go far in helping them heal.
May God be with them all. May God be with us all.

Who I am/who I want to be

We can’t get away from ourselves, at least not entirely. ….

There is no rule that says I have to be and think and act the same way my whole life. Today is a clean slate. I can be who I want to be.

This struck a chord with me, especially the last part. Every day of my life/every phase of my life has been a clean slate and I have written onto that slate the ME I wanted to be; for the most part anyway. Some days I want to be this woman in long flowing skirts, with wildly colored hair and lots of knowledge to share. I have the skirts; I look like crap in them!!! I have almost white hair that would color up wildly-so why not? Fear of what others will think? Fear my one or two good friends won’t want to be seen with me? My grand (16 year old) colors her hair every color she desires. I love that freedom. Knowledge, I have a bit, but forget more than I know.

I may begin to re-invent ME and not worry about others think!!!! It is, after all, a clean slate and for that I am thankful.

Drama Dad

SMH
Can’t figure this young generation! What does our pastor call them? Milleniums? I call them self-centered, egotistical, selfish peeps!
Example: The girls dad….I know a few weeks ago when he was home and had them for the weekend that he told them he would let them be homeschooled and they could live part time with him and part time with their uncle and me. I don’t know for a fact, but I imagine that he promised them all sorts of wonderful things, building up an ideal life for them with his words or at least in their minds.
Now, 2 weeks or a bit more later, he is saying: Shan still wants to come live with me, but with everything going on with (new girlfriend) there is no way. Too much drama.”
Too much drama???? Excuse me!!! What does maw do when the drama gets knee deep? I certainly don’t send them back to dad nor up to mom’s. I just wade on through the drama and sometimes sink up to my eyeballs in it, but with the help of God I make it to dry land and the walk is easier for while. Then just as I think it’s smooth sailing, along comes a rock in the path and I stumble over it and down a go, but only for a brief moment!!
I wonder how a child feels when dad says to her one week–You can come live me and I’ll………..(fill in the promises) and then less than a month later he is saying there is too much drama? I know I’d feel unloved, unwanted, discarded, useless, worthless. I know I’d feel as though everything else in my father’s life took precedence over me.
The oldest girl had already decided she didn’t want to go live with dad. She’s fairly level headed, thinks things through after a bit and sees some of life realistic. Still to know dad doesn’t want the younger one tells her that he wouldn’t want her either, tells her that a dramatic life prevents him from being a parent.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m glad. I don’t see it ever working out with him working offshore, with his temper, with his inability to manage money and to keep a woman. But the fact remains that he has put drama ahead of his children, drama in the form of a woman, as always.

Answered Prayer-I think

9/14/14
I sit here tonight just pondering on the latest developments in this roller coaster I call life. The girls are wanting to go live with daddy part time and my son in Louisana the other part–I love my son but there is so much chaos, drinking, disorder, confusion and God only knows what else that I simply am not comfortable with them staying there for more than a day or two. The girls think their dad will set homeschooling up for them, and they can do school when they darn well please, they can do school and live with dad when he is home from work and they can go my son’s and do school there when dad goes back offshore and it simply isn’t going to work that way..so…
I’ve prayed and asked God to handle this situation-work things out so that the girls can’t go to my son’s either because their father won’t allow them to, or they decide they don’t want to or my son doesn’t have time or space for them.
So today I get a phone call from son’s step-son. Seems my son is in jail, aggravated assault and illegal possession of a firearm. When the law was called to break up the fight son was involved in at his home and the law walked into their home, propped up by the door was a gun–son is a felon so cannot be around guns and there goes that charge against him.
God sure has a way of answering prayers. With son in jail there is no way my girls are going there either from my house nor their dads. I simply do not seeing daddy agreeing to them going there without my son there.
It’s funny, but it isn’t funny. I hate son is in jail. He’s been out of jail now for about 5 years and lets himself get into a fight and off he goes. Of course I have been knowing that the time was nearing near. Son has never been good at freedom for more than 5 years and more often it has been 3 years then he blows a gasket and does something that lands him in jail. He had been doing so well, working, fixing up the house his woman owns, just really a likeable person when he wasn’t drunk…but now who knows when he will get out if he does.
I think about that; the pain of knowing a child is in jail, the fear of knowing the other adult child might end up there within the next few months and the fear of not having the girls here and I have to say that such things as *I wasn’t given the right information* simply fade into the background and people who become so focused on such petty things should stop and count their many blessings.

Kids n Grands

First thing this morning, Robby called. He’s been in Louisana working with some guy he hooked up with right after he got out of jail in Ok. He couldn’t go back to the mechanic shop he was working at because of his dui and insurance on him at work…..so he hooks up with this dude who is going into tree surgery work.

He wants me or his dad to come get him. His boss has went all nuts on him. Finally I said to him all the things I should have said a long time ago, starting with NO. When he asked why–I simply told him that he screwed us over far too many times for me to come get him and open the door for him to do it yet again. I reminded him that he has warrants out for felony bad checks on him here in Ms. He hung up.

Fine.

Around 1 the school called saying Shandi was crying and complaining with a headache and wouldn’t do her work. I went and got her, even though I had to lock up the store since mom was at work and Terry was gone on a delivery.

When we got home, I gave her Ibuprofen, then had a good talk with her. I reminded her that if she refused to do her work, then she would fail. Failing meant she wouldn’t be in the same grade with her best friend next year. I also told her we would have the headaches checked out when we see her doc next week, but since she is fine once she gets home, from now on if I have to come get her because of a headache on Tuesday or Thursday, then she won’t go to the park when I take Ana to cheer practice. If it’s any other day of the week, then she forfeits her tv viewing time.

She did all her work and even helped me some cleaning up the pansys.

I picked up Elizabeth, and Cheyenne had rode the bus home with Ana for cheer practice…..so off we go. Teams were chosen this evening and Cheyenne and Ana are both on the Saint’s team. Elizabeth is on the Colts team. We left early and went to open house at school Ana missed making the advanced level on her MCT scores by one point…….but still her grades are very excellent. I’m very proud of her.

Shandi read her whole story this evening with minimum help from me. I am proud of her for trying her best.

One of my groups is a small one and one of the ladies is a staunch Democrat.  Another friend who is in the group and myself are a bit put off by one ladies constant reference to how stupid the Republicans are, and/or the American public for not seeing how voting R got them into the mess the country is in. It is rather insulting to me, so I’ve been quiet in there.

I just don’t feel comfortable a lot of the time anyway. I don’t have the money they have, I don’t have the fancy homes, the nice lifestyle, the cool clothes. I’m very much happy with who I am, but still I sometimes feel that I don’t belong in that clique. Maybe there is a certain amount of envy rearing it’s ugly head. Maybe it’s just my old insecurities and the old tapes playing in my head….I love all the women in there and as a whole they seem like really nice people. I can’t help but wonder though if any of them at least think about how I’m not up to ‘par’ with them, or worse yet, say it among each other in private. Again, that’s insecurities talking but they are a very real part of who and what I am, even though I work hard on removing them.

Shandi’s ongoing school problems

Shandi is 8 years old, ADD/ADHD/ODD. For 3 years, her mom and I have been trying to get her the help she needs to succeed in school. We may be getting somewhere now.

Wednesday

I had a meeting with the school, the TSP and Shandi’s teachers, both 1st grade and 2nd grade. *she’s in 2nd grade this year, having passed by an administrative decision.* Seems the 18 week evaluation done toward the end of the 1st grade, and turned in by her teacher has been lost. Without that evaluation, we must go through the process again, so they say. However, I did get it down to by the end of the 1st 9 weeks, rather than 18 weeks. The interventionist who attended the meeting also said that there was a possibility that if I brought a recommendation from the psychologist, which we see the 3rd, we might could bypass that and go on to the next level of their process.

I looked the TSP, who is the one who lost the evaluation and said-It is not fair that the child suffers because an adult couldn’t be responsible for the paperwork.

Both teachers spoke on Shandi’s behalf, stating that without one on one help, she could not do the reading work. Whether it does any good or not, I came home and emailed the MS. Dept. of Education, specifically the policy and procedure department, because it is their P&P’s that is keeping the school from putting Shandi in the tutoring class.

Last night at church, I had put Shandi and her school situation on the prayer list. I told them in brief what was happening and that I knew God could move mountains and he could find lost paperwork.

Frustration is a mild word for what I’m feeling at the moment. I’m also determined. I made a copy of the letter written to the Dept of Ed and plan to deposit a copy of it on the desk of the Superintendent of Ed and one on the desk of the lady over the Special Education department for our local school system. My motive for doing that is simply to leave a paper trail of what I’m doing to get Shandi the help she deserves.

Thursday:
I received a phone call from the Special Ed Dept of Ms. Dept of Ed. The lady was very nice and wanted permission to contact the school board. We talked a bit about Shandi and her situation, and she promised to call me back when she got answers to the questions she needed answered.

While I was in town this evening, the TSP from school, *Terry thinks that is who it was, either her or the Interventionist* called to say that Shandi has been moved into the 2nd tier of testing/evaluation. The local Superintendent of Education made a phone call or two and the papers were located.

In the meantime I had gone by his office and left a copy of my letter to the MDOE. I didn’t get to meet with him as he was busy, so I left it with the secretary.

I also got another surprise. When I opened the weekly local paper this morning there was a write up which included a letter to the Supt. Of Ed., informing him of the areas our Walthall School district fell short in their review made last school term. Seems every deficiency was in Special Education, and especially in providing Supplemental aids and services. I still don’t know what those are-I haven’t found it defined and I’ve searched the website over. I will be asking though for I feel it includes inclusion teachers to help children like Shandi, who don’t qualify for the special ed class where they are separated from the main class, yet need some extra help to keep up.

I was told at the meeting last week that Salem does not have inclusion teachers. I also want to find out why they don’t and what is needed to get ever how many they need.