KIDS: Chris and I have been talking about our parenting situation lately and while we haven't ruled out a time when we might get out those adoption papers and start filling them out in ink, at this point we've pretty much decided that now is not the time. We say this with some feeling of a heavy heart, because we both realize that the older the boys get, the less likely it is to be "the time." And a part of both of us WOULD very much like to have another child, in particular, we'd like to have the "parent a girl" experience. We suspect it's an entirely different road than the "parent a boy" experience, and we'd like to go down that road.
One of the wisest parents I know is a Catholic, homeschooling, single-Mom who gave me the advice that "the needs of the most vulnerable person in the house come first." Right up to the start of this year, I would have said that was Ben and Milo. Recently, however, we've come to realize that Ben and Milo have reached a nice coasting speed. They have a great teacher, they have us, and they have each other. They like their Primary teacher, they like their piano teacher, they like their school, they each have good friends in class, are ahead in both reading and math, and have cheerful, friendly dispositions.
So we turn our attention back to our eldest and check on him. How's he doing? Is he at coasting speed, too? And if we could honestly say yes, I think that would have resulted in a very different adoption decision, but neither of us could say yes. We both feel that our oldest is a little more anxious than he needs to be. He needs help staying on top of his schedule, guidance making the right decisions with his behavior, his homework, and his friends. Don't get me wrong--he's a great kid, has a good teacher, is doing well in many regards. There's just this very clear feeling between his father and I that he's more vulnerable than he needs to be. We feel he's doing well BECAUSE his father is his scout master and is at his school two afternoons a week, because his mother is at his school all the freakin' time, because we put so much time into what he's doing, where he is, and how he is doing. And there is definitely a feeling that this is NOT the time to let up . . . and won't be any time soon. I don't know if this is typical of parenting a middle schooler, or if it's just our kid. But we feel that if we were to adopt--in which case the new baby or child would be the neediest--that Max would be at risk in some way. I'm not saying that we're sure he would be, and I'm DEFINITELY not saying that there's ANYTHING wrong with the kid. There really isn't. It's just a gut feeling among Chris and I; if we need to "adopt" a kid right now, it's the kid we already have: the preteen. I know there are gobs of families that do adopt when there are teens and preteens in the house and it probably is exactly the right decision for their family. This year it's not right for us.
KNITTING: I have a lot on the needles right now and feel perennially behind. I spent half of this afternoon trying to fix the mittens I made for my nephew. They were fine in every regard but one--too tight at the wrist. I cut the mittens at the wrist and reknit the area in question, then grafted the top of the mitten to the bottom. Sounds easy in theory, but when you consider that I often make adjustments to a pattern as I go and almost NEVER write down what those adjustments were, I'm discovering this can be a nightmare. I honestly wonder if it wouldn't have been easier to just knit a new pair of mittens. I have one mitten fixed. I'm in the processes of undoing a million little kitchener stitches after discovering a major error--for the second time.
Tomorrow the twinks start skiing for the first time. I haven't finished fixing their knee socks so they don't fall down. I'm close though. I've got Ben's done and one of Milo's. I might get them done by 4 pm tomorrow. I've told myself I can't finish Milo's sock before O-bear's mitten though. That's a lot of knitting to get done AND still get enough Workwork done. Is the post office open tomorrow? I know it's MLK Jr. day. I just can't remember if that's a federal holiday or not.
I'm visiting a friend on Friday who could be in the antepartum ward for another 5 weeks. I'd really like to bring her a little something for her little one. I'm going to blink and it'll be Friday though, so I'm trying to keep an open mind about that.
My eye is starting to twitch. I should go finish my workwork and then do some meditation or something. :)