Surprise! I am still here. The thing is life has just been chugging along , doing it's thing, and I have been jogging along side it trying to keep up. All is well here in these parts. We are having a winter with more rain than snow ( a source of frustration for this snow lover). Both girls are doing quite well. Both earned Honor Roll (a first for Bean).
Caroline is still driven and hard working. The realities of grown up life have become apparent to her. She is mulling over the cost of college and a car and a future career. She wants to choose a path with a good financial future. While I admire her practicality, I would rather she choose the path that makes her happy. She really wants to do something that will help people ( social work or psychology), but is worried that there is no money in it. We toured George Mason today (one of her top choices). She seemed so overwhelmed with choosing a major. I told her that she didn't have to decide right now. It will all become clear once she starts taking classes and exploring her interests (high school here does not allow that, everything is geared towards specialty programs, no wonder my child feels like she needs to have her path set). Of course, when you are standing on the edge of a perceived abyss, trying to decide your entire life, you don't want to hear platitudes (regardless of their truth) from your mother. So, I stopped talking. This is a new skill that I am polishing. I am mastering the art of just letting things go. Generally, my words are heard, stored away, and brought up later.
Lily is doing much better. I might not agree with her teacher's methods, but she clearly loves Lily. She is the first teacher to see the same intelligence and creativity that we have always seen. She is in robotics club and the Lego club. As of this moment, she wants to be an architect or engineer. Of course, she is Lily and in two years this will all change. She still has her "shiny happy fits of rage," but they are short lived and she easily moves on. She still has trouble sleeping and for the life of me, I don't know what to do about this. I have no choice but to wait it out.
As for me? There is a good reason why I have been so absent on this blog. I have been really busy. I LOVE my class. They are the sweetest and most amazing little class. I have a student with a pretty severe seizure disorder and I have been spending a lot of time researching and creating modifications for her. I am also pretty entrenched in local politics in relation to education. There are big changes going on here with budgets and education. I am a polite advocate who has been trying to rally the troops to come up with some solution that will not hurt students and teachers. It is my opinion that the further away educators move from working with actual children, the less their decisions reflect what is best for children. As a country our education system is in crisis. We need less business and political input and more educator input. See, I have big opinions. My motto should be "Speak softly and carry big ideas." As my girls start to head off on their own paths, I need to find one for myself. Education has always been the path I return to time and time again. I am a career teacher with no aspirations for administration positions. I intend to stay where I am needed until I retire.