Monday, July 8, 2013

Perspective

I'm pretty sure I've had at least one post a year with this title.  Am I the only one that has such trouble with perspective?  I'm also quite sure that most of my posts and stories about perspective start with me and some friends around the lunch table in Miss Chinigo's fourth grade classroom over 30 years ago.  The topic was if our mothers were fat or thin.  My mother had been on a diet or talking about dieting much of my childhood, so she had convinced me she was fat.  I certainly didn't want to say that my mother was fat, but she had been telling me she was so I sat there in a 10 year old quandary wondering what to do.  It came around to me and three different kids at the table all said, "Julie's mom is thin,"  at least this is how I remember it.  Now I probably should state that a couple of these kids had moms that were pushing 300lbs so, but still this was very enlightening to me.  "She is?" was my first thought, followed my "oh yeah, she is (even if she doesn't think so)".  This story is always my introduction to the topic of perspective.  If I were a good blogger who labeled my posts with topics this one would show up a few times.  Before I continue with my thoughts on perspective I must say that anyone who knew me in fourth grade would see the irony here because it was definitely my chunckiest year as a child.
Aren't you glad I included that?  If that doesn't boost my readership, I don't know what will.  The funny thing about being 43 is that this doesn't even embarrass me!  But anyway... on to today's thoughts on perspective. 
 
But wait the more I look at this picture, ugh, maybe I'm a leeetle bit embarrassed, the angle that I took the pic of the pic with my phone actually makes me look obese, but I wasn't actually obese, just chubby.
 
Now I think I've lost my train of thought.  Actually I have a few subjects in my brain that are confusing me perspective-ally speaking.  One has to do with summertime and boredom.  I don't get boredom.  I see all kinds of facebook posts and hear all kinds of comments about kids and teens and moms being bored and I absolutely cannot relate!  I am always tempted to invite them over here to clean my kitchen floor.  I was just recently reading an article by a fairly well known mom writer who had a very common end of the schoolyear blog post that went viral and landed her on the Today show.  The article I was reading was about summer and how to keep the boredom etc away they go somewhere exciting every Thursday.  First I think most of her kids are younger than mine, but seriously we can barely find the time to go camping for two nights this summer with everyone's schedules, I can't imaging having a free day to randomly go somewhere each week.  Now maybe I've just answered my own questions right there.  Clearly we are a little too busy to be bored.  But even before I had teenagers who had jobs and mainstage shows and classes and and and, we were never a bored family.  Jake is only ten, has no schoolwork, no job, no real set chores, and no girlfriend, and even he isn't bored.  Last week every single one of his close friends was on vacation and still he never uttered that word.  Now I must admit Jake has said the 'b' word before, but not very often and not in the last few years.  Granted he might be watching super heroes shows on his ipod or playing the Wii, instead of finishing Tom Sawyer or vacuuming the floor, but the bottom line is, he's finding something to do.  I haven't even gotten to my perspective thing yet.  Let's see if I'm even capable of tying this whole thing together.  As we sit on the brink of a whole new adventure in schooling, I am reminiscing on our full time whole family homeschooling years.  I can never figure out if we've been the busiest people in the world or the laziest.  Well, I'm quite sure we aren't either, but where on the continuum did we lie?  If my kids have almost never had to be awakened by an alarm clock, if they've almost always had the opportunity to take their time eating breakfast and lunch (and often have the TV on at the same time), then we're not so busy right?  On the other hand if they are spending hours upon hours at the theatre, if Madi and Jake are two of only three cantors at church that are under the age of 55, if we commit and over commit to things that are important to us we can't really be considered lazy can we?  It's funny.  The general consensus is that Jake will have less free time when he starts public school, but Madi and I are thinking she will have more.  She'll only have four (or five) classes at a time.  When school and homework are over they will be over, this has not been the case at home at least for the last few years.  Homeschooling high school (and late middle school) never ends, there's always more to learn and when your teacher lives in your house, she is bound to tell you to do something else, go do more math, go read some more history, go take your science test.  I'm pretty sure none of her high school teachers are going to show up here in the evening and tell her to do some more work.  The great thing is I won't have to do that either.  Come mid August, I get to just be the mom.  The one with cookies on the counter ready to hear about her day instead of the nag ready to point out what she has left to do.   
 
I hope you know I was just being funny when I said Jake is ten and doesn't have a girlfriend, of course he does.  No seriously of course he doesn't.  I was saying that because Jonathan is 17 and for the last six months he has had a girlfriend.  I am good with that.  There's a common way of thinking in the conservative homeschool community that dating is taboo.  There's a popular link on facebook right now about how young kids going in and our of relationships is going to contribute to more divorce.  I read those things and look for ways to disagree.  How can you possibly learn about relationships without being in them?? (I'm not just talking about dating relationships, I'm talking about any relationships).  But of course I'm also reading these things thinking about my almost 18 year old son.  There are eleven and twelve year olds out there who think they are dating and I definitely think that is ridiculous.  It's perspective again.  I often read those things thinking the authors and the people who shared them are fairly ignorant and then I remind myself that I generally agree with about 90% of what they are saying, it's just the 10% that I'm choosing to focus on.  Perspective.
 
I have a lot more to say, but that will have to wait for another time.  In the meantime, don't worry about my chubby young self because I slimmed down by 5th grade, and here's me in 6th grade.
 
I didn't really become chubby again til I had a few kids.  Of course between 6th grade and getting pregnant with Jonathan I thought I was, but looking back now I was not...Perpective!!
 
I may or may not have written this post before, but I guarantee I never included such visuals!

3 comments:

Kat said...

I loved reading this post! :) My boys only have ever said the word "bored" once. After having me find something for them to do (chores/cleaning/something they didn't like, lol), they realized that wasn't a good thing to say in my earshot. It's not only them...anytime they have someone staying over (friends, cousins), they warn them. Whatever you do, don't say you're bored around my mom! :D

Also wanted to say that I'm creating a blogroll of blogs that blog (at least occasionally) about homeschooling high school. (http://letshomeschoolhighschool.com/homeschool-high-school-blogs/) I came across yours today and would LOVE to add it. If you would consider this, could you email me? katie@letshomeschoolhighschool.com. Thanks in advance! Blessings...

Katie

ann marie said...

Oh you made me laugh with this one. Seriously. I hate blogger because I can't see your post now while I'm writing this comment but there was so much here that I wanted to comment on. I will see you soon enough for coffee though. I am looking forward to Kate going to school. I think it's going to be exciting for her. On the dating thing...I'm glad I'm not on facebook anymore :) Ok, what else was I going to comment on? Oh yes, I thought I was a real moose back in the day! Why did I waste my skinny years not appreciating them? Reading all of your new posts makes me almost want to post something on my blog. But just almost.

ann marie said...
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