Starting in late August, Peter began traveling for work. In this economy, it's almost impossible for an older person to find full time professional work; even with a practical career like his (he's a mechanical engineer with a biomedical focus), Peter was striking out until he decided to begin looking at the short-term, remote jobs his head-hunters were sending him. This style of work agrees with him; he enjoys the variety and the travel. To date, his jobs have taken him to Dallas, LA, and now Ann Arbor, Michigan. I've seen him a few times since then, but his brief stays at home aren't the same as our previous team approach used to be. It's an adjustment for us both. I'm expecting him home in a day or two (hurray!) before he begins the Michigan job. I look forward to curling up around him, and falling asleep feeling his warmth again. There's nothing more comforting to me. Except foot rubs. Love those foot rubs.
It's been an awakening, in many ways. While I'm perfectly capable of living a solitary life, I'm reminded of why I searched for him in the first place. It's awfully nice to have someone to share things with on a daily basis (both the good and bad). Someone like him.
The week before Thanksgiving, I had a much needed joint replacement in the base of my right thumb. This rendered me left-handed (not my usual dominant hand) for a few months. It was impossible to lift heavy objects, do buttons, put on certain clothes items, open cans; you get the drift. And teaching art was interesting; I believe it made me more sensitive to the challenges faced by beginning artists. Using my left hand instead of my right to draw, paint, and sculpt put us all on a level playing field in terms of skills. It was good for me to feel that again. I managed to get through those months, and have emerged one small bone lighter, and immensely more comfortable than I was just a few months ago. My thumb joint was so deteriorated that it had been giving me constant pain. That's gone now, and I'm ready for spring kidding season at the farm. Just in the nick of time, as the does are scheduled to drop their kids in about 2 weeks. I LOVE this time of year!
My mother, who is 85, has accepted my invitation to come and live with us. To make our little home more functional for her, I had a full bathroom built on the first floor. The construction took about two weeks, which happened right at the end of the first semester, and into the first day or two of the second semester. Life was chaos for awhile, but it paid off: the bathroom is beautiful. I want to live in it. Just around that time, my administrator let me know that I'll be moving to a different classroom next year, which means boxing and moving17 years worth of art materials and examples. It also means losing a grant I won to develop the outdoor area by my current classroom. We have lost one art position because of retirement; I won't go on about all of this, as it contradicts my self-imposed ban of blogging about school, but you can imagine the consternation this is causing me when compounded by the disturbances on the home front. (Just these few sentences have made my heart pound). I've actually considered seeking a counselor to get me over this bump.
|Goats make good counselors. They're good listeners.|
I try to turn my thoughts to the spring when I'm feeling helpless. I've purchased several packets of seeds, and hope to start some carrots and lettuces today. There's nothing like a tender, newly growing vegetable to give you hope for the future; that is, nothing except a tender, newly born goat kid! And they'll be coming soon. I'm holding on to that thought.
|Lettuce give thanks for Spring.|
And so, we move on. Some things change, and some stay the same. It's a dance, this life I'm living. The tempo has changed slightly, but I'll pick up the beat. It's just a matter of time.