Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Parenting Off of the Stage

I've come to the conclusion that children are high maintenance.

Yeah, news flash. Adult ones too. Perhaps especially the young adult ones. Young adult children are too poor for cars so they need to share your cars or get rides everywhere. They don't know how to fill out forms and applications, tax stuff, and life in the modern world is one form after the next. Then this happened:

Leading to this:

I won't get into details on how but it had something to do with the tire of a BMW.  This created more forms along with lots of drives to the orthopedic doctor's office, and a sudden inability to look for a job after her summer temporary job was complete.  

(Rabbit trail: I've seen some articles going around that tell parents not to discuss their kids on blogs because it's mean. My kids read my blog and I don't put things on it that they would be bothered by, so rest your minds as I continue to toss our world out there. They aren't likely to sue me like that girl in Australia who is suing her parents because they post embarrassing pictures of her on facebook because suing me would mean filling out more forms.  There you have it.)

For the record, neither adult child was hired on at Starbucks. Their loss. Katie is working for a famous restaurant that shall not be named (so I can trash it later), until she is able to complete some swimming lessons and Red Cross lifeguard training in hopes that the recreation center will hire her. Alex, the kid with the broken foot, has been promised a job at Chick-Fil-A just as soon as she gets the OK from the doctor to be in regular shoes and walk around, which should be this Friday. She plans to return to school as soon as she can get the funds figured out and get in-state tuition through the local community college. 

Sean initially got a job at the restaurant-that-shall-not-be-named, but the general manager appears to be a slightly less stable muggle version of Professor Umbridge. (Harry Potter, fifth book, for those confused.) He's younger and his stress was very high so we suggested he quit and get a job elsewhere.  He was almost immediately hired on at McDonalds, which is one of the teen friendly job locations within walking distance, and he is doing great. He likes the job, likes the managers, (who are not related to death eaters, it would seem), and it seems to be teaching him a lot of valuable skills. He's just about to get his 3rd paycheck and is raking the minimum wage dough. Currently, he's working at the register but wants to Learn All the Things, from cooking to the drive through.  (I have asked him to not tell me about the food he eats while there and have increased his probiotics.)

Katie, still at the restaurant-that-shall-not-be-named, is getting 40-50 hours per week because they are constantly under staffed because no one wants to work for the place.  Go figure.  She appears to be the type of person to blend into the background enough that the less stable muggle Umbridge has not given her much trouble. She got a slight raise and is left to her own devices most of the time, with the general manager largely working at the other nearby restaurant-that-shall-not-be-named, so all is tolerable for now. 

Now for a word of advice: Use extra caution if you live in Virginia, because the boy child mentioned above now has a learner's permit and is driving. His dad is the boss of that.  Every time he gets behind the wheel I can be found at home curled up in a corner and praying.

The same child is back in violin lessons, which he pays for himself with his stellar minimum wages. His teacher seems to match his mental wavelength perfectly and gives him the end of each lesson to mess around with a 5-string electric fiddle. Sean is in heaven. Initially, his plan was to get money to build the ultimate gaming computer. Now his priorities have changed. He plans to get a 5-string electric fiddle, complete with all the electronic bells and whistles that will make it sound like anything he wants it to sound like. Then he plans to be a YouTuber and do weird creations online with the fiddle.

In the end, parenting off the stage is getting complicated for all except Mary. I had to take her to a play date yesterday, but that was fun for me too, since I had a nice mom-to-mom chat while they played. As the weather cooled to pants weather the other day, I found out every single one of her jeans are 2-3 inches too short, so shopping is a must. Other than that, she's the low-maintenance one. Does her school. Reads lots and lots of books. Does the dishes, too.

To round it all out, we now have a rental house that suits us quite well for now. I took an evening job cleaning medical offices after hours, partly to give us a financial boost with all the new changes, and because I needed to be free during the day to play chauffeur to the high-maintenance ones and do all that homeschool mom stuff, plus it's mindless work where I can escape with an audio book every evening. The local library has free audio books I can download onto my phone with an app. Ahhhh...

Benny is safe and sound for the winter, stored in a local lot. We've moved out and scrubbed him clean. Part of me already misses it, but ultimately we were more than ready for the change. If all goes as planned, we'll drive him back to Colorado in the spring for a visit and perhaps sell him. 
After cleaning every bit of stored clutter from under every bench, then moving it to a wall in my bedroom for sorting, I spend the last month wading through five years of STUFF. The piles are almost gone so as a reward, I hunted for a perfect desk, finding one this weekend at a thrift store. It goes with the awesome, comfortable, and like-new office chair I dumpster dove to get (literally). 

I'm hoping that the close of this post will eventually become the opening to the next phase for me. Because... I have plans. Mwahahahaha! Plans I've made and been forced to put on hold multiple times while on the road because running the band and travels did not allow for the time and focus to pursue anything else. Now that we've settled, if I can get the little ones, oops, er, older kids a bit more, uh, independent, I just may be able to jump in on that next dream.

I also want to sew again, make more of the cute clay jewelry, and enjoy life off of wheels for a change. It all starts with a work space and a few hours a day. Ah, dreams. They're free, you know, and now and then if you dream enough of them, one may come along you can actually grab.