You know the saying....March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb? I don't know that they meant the weather - it seems to apply much more to life. March began with a roar. I know we still have another week to go, but already the pace is less frantic. No big stresses are viewable. I'm hoping for the lamb-like ending.
The last week of February was busy - very busy. Come in late and get to bed late - busy. 5 hours of sleep a night busy. Ben was on academic probation, so Mean Homework Mom was required everyday. Nate's iron must be really low, because he is sleeping 16-18 hours a day. I am slightly overcommitted (as usual), but am handling it. not well, but doable. Until...
Friday the 27th, I was elected Teacher of the Year for my campus. This should be a great honor, right? I had a moment of "awww...somebody noticed" which was cut short when they told me that I had to write 7 essays (~14 pages by the following Friday). You know that I HATE to write! I have terrible writers block on a good day, and I wasn't having any good days lately. Panic sets in.
Saturday the 28th, Ben is to be in Austin for the state German competition. This is a 3 hour drive each way. Nate is too sick to go, so I drink about 3 diet cokes and head out early in the morning. I take a wrong turn. I call my sister for internet directions and Ben makes it to his competition time with 10 minutes to spare. (Turns out that the wrong turn was a benefit as there was a terrible wreck on the road we were supposed to be on, and traffic was backed up for an hour). Ben does his 2 competitions (german play and german skit) and we get back on the road home. I force him to go to the store where they are having a 70% off men's suits sale. He chooses a beautiful sport jacket. We arrive home at 8 p.m. A really, really long day, but I lived.
Monday, March 2nd. My shelves arrive. They were ordered in December for my lab, but installation got quirked and they arrive today to install them. My new directive is to get that unholy mess from the 2 room floodings the past fall cleaned up before the EP comes to visit. (Oh, and by the way, don't forget those essays). I come home to write, and promptly get in a fight with Nate, who is not really very coherent. I really, really want to run away from home. Really.
March 4th - spend the day getting my essays rewritten (since the computer didn't save my last changes). Principal assigns me to attend a meeting next Wednesday evening. (Science Fair is on Tuesday and Family Science Night is on Thursday. Evidently someone told him that I had a couple of free hours on Wednesday afternoon) Ben gets his Star rank in Scouts. Good job, Ben! (good job, mom, for grounding him until the last requirement was finished) Find out that Ben is 28 entries behind in his journal which is being picked up on Friday. Thus start the super-late nights...
March 5th - send off essays in the morning to my 2 dear friends for editing. Nate has doctor appointment spurred by our argument on Monday. Docs see him, run labs, have no answers. Go visiting teaching and then drop into my hair person, as I cannot gray gracefully anymore following 13 ma'am's since Saturday. As I walk in her door, the phone rings. Nate's doctor is admitting him to the hospital immediately. I apologize and go directly home. Thank goodness Heather can take Ben overnight and do school dropoff and pickup on Friday. We head to the hospital where all they can tell us is that is hemoglobin is less than 6, and his hemocrit is 1. (both of these are critical levels). The plan is to transfuse blood until Nate's levels are above critical, and then do IV iron in hopes that his body will make more blood. By this time, I am dangerously tired, and a little stressed because I haven't done the final edit on my essays. Nate sends me home at 11:30. I return home and get through the essay edits. Many thanks to my friend who chatted with me online until I was through the crisis and could think. Get to sleep around 2:30 a.m.
March 6th. Print final copy and put in dividers. Go to school to drop it off and head straight to hospital. Nate is looking less pale - he actually has some color in his skin instead of the transparent sallow look of the past few years. They haven't started the iron iv, yet. The doctor comes in and is quite concerned that the full workup that we had done 1.5 years ago hasn't been followed up on. Gets him to a new hemotologist on Monday. (yay!) After the iron iv and confirmation that he is 2/3 full of blood, and the final okay, we head home at 6 p.m. Nate eats dinner and goes right to sleep. I decide to color my hair myself, so that I can squeeze in for a haircut on Tuesday. (put this one under things NOT to do immediately after bringing your husband home from the hospital). It's rather light - blond in some places.
March 8th. Get word from my AP that the last 2 words on the essay were cut off, and can I fix it and bring it to her first thing on Monday? Nate feeling better, but starting to look pale again. Ben up until midnight writing.
March 9th. Science fair is tomorrow. I don't even know how many projects are actually completed. I have 9 judges scheduled for tomorrow. I call for all projects and end up with....5. 5 projects. Last year we had over 100. Decide to cancel the judges since it isn't worth their time to take off from work to judge 5 projects. Start cleaning the lab to make administration happy. Get an "FYI" e-mail informing the school that I am now the 'bat containment specialist'. ??? Which means that if there is a bat on campus, they should call me so that I can contain it and call the district animal control. (in the past few years, there have been some rabid bat incidents). What I want to know is how I got assigned this job? I'm only a science teacher! Start laughing hysterically which beats crying hysterically. Nate comes home from his hematologist appt with a calendar. His body made blood (nearly a pint!) with the iv iron from the hospital. So now we know that his body makes iron, but we don't know if it is an absorption or storage issue. Plan is to give heavy iron ivs for each of the next 3 weeks, and then wait 3 weeks to see if his body will store iron and absorb it. At last! After 3 years there is a plan! Ben up until 1 a.m. writing.
March 10th. Science Fair. Judge 5 of the WORST projects I have ever seen. Start prepping for family science night which is in 2 days. Get my hair cut. It looks cute. Come home - Ben is reading my high school yearbook and informs me that I have the same hair as then. Ben up late writing again.
March 12th. Family Science Night. Very, very nervous as I changed the way it was handled from previous years. Starts POURING at 3:30 p.m. Get all set up and ready. Crocodile Encounters and J.C. come to do their presentations beginning at 5:30. All 6 earth science activities are ready and most of my volunteers show up. -- Only 6 kids are there. Finally about 6pm, we have to start adding chairs and the evening begins. It went great! Everyone was pleased with the presentations and the activities. It ran very smoothly and we were cleaned up and out of there by 8 p.m. My principal even called me to say thanks. wow!
March 13th. School. Spring Break begins at 3:30 p.m. I'm trying to stay awake....trying....trying... I sleep for the next 3 days.
March 16-20th. My sister and our friend TA have set up a project goal as well as a daily reward for meeting our goals. I get the Den clean. Yes, for real! for the first time in 2 years, everything has a place and is in it. I finish the handmade book that has been sitting in pieces for the past 14 months. I get the house clean, I shop, I cook, I start working out to get ready for my trip to Yellowstone. It's a great week. Nate is getting much better - not normal yet, but now only sleeping 12 hours a night.
March 21st - we all go out for lunch and then to 2! stores. This is something Nate hasn't been able to do since the summer. (and back then, I couldn't do it because of my broken foot). He evidently overdid because he had a migraine for the next 24 hours, but he is improving.
March 22nd - It has been a really long month. I was under enormous amounts of stress. I was so stressed I stopped eating (and you know that I am usually a stress-eater). I need to thank my family and friends for their support. Heather, the Wards, Rebecca, Jim - you were all true blessings in my life and I could not have gotten through without you.
March 23rd - back to school. Not completely rested, but the days are more normal now. regular labs, regular classes, regular life...I hope it continues for the rest of the month.