“You must love having the whole summer off.”

As a teacher, I hear this a lot. A. Lot. First of all, the last time I checked, summer ran from June 21st to September 21st, and I most definitely do NOT have that entire time off. Secondly, I have no less than 4 different all-day workshops scheduled over the summer and have received no less than five e-mails regarding school issues since we got out of school a week and a half ago. And last, since we have been “on vacation” I have carted children to and fro from swimming lessons, helped to burn a wongo pile of wood, helped to cut down and move over/cut up/haul off two 50 foot pine trees, attended two house meetings, gone to three doctor appointments, and there is no end in sight. Summer is just the time to do all of the things you can’t do during the school year, and I most certainly DO appreciate having it “off.” I figure it makes up for the rest of the year when I get a 30 minute lunch break, and can’t use the phone or the restroom except during my 45 planning period IF I don’t have a meeting.

That being said, nothing burned up but what was supposed to burn up when we burned the pile of wood. Tony actually started it on his own while I took the kids to swim lessons. Then we went out there in the BLAZING heat and roasted hot dogs on a much SMALLER fire (as the one in the middle of the lot was way too hot to stand near). We ended up spending the night. The children slept in the back of the car with swim noodles as pillows, while Tony and I slept on an air mattress in the bed of the pick-up truck. Tony keeps two filthy pillows and an equally filthy blanket in his truck “just in case.” I normally avoid physical contact with these items, but at 10:00 PM when you are getting ready to sleep in the bed of a truck, beggars can’t be choosers. It did not help the next morning when Tony told me that the holes in the blanket were caused when he covered his gerbil cage with it about 25 years ago and the gerbil pulled parts of it into the cage to chew up for bedding material. He was uncertain as to whether or not it had been washed since then.

In doctor news, the endocronologist to whom I was sent by my internist seems to think that my low calcium, high white count and swelling are unrelated events that sort of all happened simultaneously as I am not in congestive heart failure, kidney failure, or generally at the point of death. He is testing me for every single thing he can and will give me the results on Tuesday. He seems to think that I will need to be “treated” for the low calcium level–and hopefully the white count will have righted itself making that a non-issue. Then my internist can decide how frequently I need to take the Lasix if at all. I had never been to an endocronologist. Mine has no exam room. The little room where they take you to see the dr. has a table and two chairs. The end. No exam table–no medical equipment. Just a place to sit and chat. Evidently your “endocrines” cannot be examined except by the removal of 7 different vials of blood. At least that’s how many they took from me.

In the mean time I had to go to a psychiatrist for a medical consult for some medication I take stemming from premature ventricular contractions brought on by panic/anxiety attacks that began back in 2004. From February to April of that year Daddy had open heart surgery, my mother-in-law had a massive stroke, Victoria had bacterial pneumonia, and I had to find a job and childcare for my then three year old. By May, I was having horrible chest pains that were pretty much non-stop–racing heart–weird heart beats. I was tested extensively, and my dr. concluded that since I tend to not panic, my body did it for me without asking my opinion about it at all. He prescribed an anti-depressant even though I was not technically depressed, but when I have tried to stop taking it, the heart palpitations have returned within a few days. . .my idle is set on high. Not only did it help with the heart palpatations, but it also helped with the horrid black temper that everyone in my family is saddled with–not that I don’t still have my times of losing my temper–it’s just a lot less common. So. . .my gynecologist recommended that I have a medical consult to determine if that is still the best medication to keep my heart from going wonky. It appears that even though I try to “handle” the stress, my body takes it upon itself to “act out” and say, “Enough already.” And I think that is what happened this year with the ankles too.

I have never been to a psychiatrist until now. The one that I went to LOOKED like a psychiatrist and talked very, very softly so as not to frighten me I suppose. I told Sarah to imagine Professor Trelawney from the Harry Potter Movies but without the glasses. . .and she only had on one necklace–not several. She seriously was wearing a SHAWL. After 50 minutes of her asking me questions and me laying it all out there she said, “Um, I’m going to need to see you again.” Guess that speaks for itself. She actually said she wanted to see blood work from the other doctors, but I know that was code for, “Chick, you are some kind of a mess.” Maybe if I wore a shawl and talked very softly I wouldn’t be in this predicament.

In other news, Thad turns 7 on Thursday. And also that is our 15th anniversary. The whole anniversary thing is secondary to Thad turning a year older, but we still try to remember that we got married on that day. Thad is seriously into Indiana Jones. And he’s not seen ANY of the movies, but Lego got in on the action, and he loves him some Legos. . .so he now loves Indiana Jones via the information he’s picked up from Lego.com. Tony has built a box for him like the packing crates of yore that says, “Property of Dr. Jones” on top with the serial number 06122008– for June 12, 2008–on top and “Top Secret” on the front. It has rope handles and a lock with TWO keys–one of which we will keep just in case.

Inside the box he will find a REAL Indiana Jones fedora (for real–not for fake–we sized it to grow with him and got the actual wool felt one–he’ll have to add his own dirt), a khaki canvas shoulder bag (a lady’s purse from Wal-Mart that is brown and brown with a long, brown strap) with a golden “treasure” inside (a fleur de lis from Hobby Lobby spray-painted gold), a REAL whip (from my sister that will remain coiled and tied for decoration upon pain of death until he is as tall as the whip is long–which is 6 feet), and a DK book with everything you ever wanted to know about Indiana Jones.

My mother bought him the toy Indiana Jones whip that won’t actually injure anyone and makes a whip crackin’ noise and plays the Indiana Jones theme song when you press a button. It’s about 10 different kinds of fun.

We did not get him a bomber jacket or a pistol. We figured if you can’t feel like Indy with a hat and a whip and a theme song, you have no imagination.

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2 thoughts on ““You must love having the whole summer off.”

  1. The comment “you must love having the whole summer off” for you is right up there with “you don’t have anything to do” with me.

    The Indiana Jones gift is so creative and darling. Will Thad get to wear his hat to church.

    Lastly, you are in my prayers as all this testing continues.

  2. Vacation doesn’t mean there is nothing to do – oh, how boring! It’s that we get a break from the usual routine. That is what makes a weekend great, and a summer vacation awesome. Routines are fine, but it’s so great to hop out of the hamster wheel now and then 🙂

    Hope you get all kinds of things done this summer, so you’ll be ‘ready’ for the routine again in the fall!

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