Friday, February 01, 2008

Able to yell again

Well, last time we talked, I had lost my job, backed into the neighbor's car and set myself on fire. Good times. Since then things have settled down a bit. I lost my voice, got a temporary job that could maybe turn into something longer, got my voice back, lost my voice again and found out that something is munching away in my sock drawer.

I was so stressed out last week that I didn't even KNIT for three whole days. I don't think I've gone three days without knitting since back in 2004 when I learned how. It amazed me. Three days. Then I started thinking, wow, is that NORMAL? Do you guys knit that much? I don't mean all day, every day, but a little in the evenings or when waiting for kids at basketball practice and as a little break after the day at work is over? Do you guys have the local yarn shops saved on your cell phones too? Or is it just me?

I'm normally a pretty shiny, happy kind of a person. Life doesn't often get me down. But when stress gets too much for me, my body just kind of picks some strange thing to do and goes crazy with it. Bad divorce and sick baby? Hives from head to toe that WON'T GO AWAY, tons of allergy meds, steriods, and relaxation techniques. Crazy white-van-with-no-windows-driving Stalker Man? Hair fell out in clumps and put on 40 lbs in 2 months. Lose comfy job and have to go back to the real world? Throat closes the hell up. I couldn't hardly breathe. I finally was able to massage my muscles and give myself a talking to and relax things enough to breathe and swallow again, but my voice was gone. Whisper with an occasional croak. Whenever the heart rate got pumping and that freakout feeling came back I'd have to stop to rub my throat to be able to just breathe normally. Seriously freaked me out as this lasted for almost a week.

That's when I got the call back and had to do some negotiating for the temporary independent contractor gig. Yup, I sounded like a damn frog that was going through puberty. Long story short, I got the job. I've got funds coming in soon and I'll just see where this takes me. The BEST part is that I've got a little flexibility and can still be home in the afternoons with the kids most of the time. sweet. This will help me get through to the spring (hopefully) and then I'll figure out what to do for the summer and beyond.

I also survived a weekend with all four children with NO VOICE. I always knew I was a yelling mom. I don't yell often, but when I do, it's LOUD and it WORKS. I'm fine with that. The only problem is I yell a LOT more when we've got all four here. Sometimes this house is so freaking loud that a good HEY! is about all that will cut through the noise to get anyone's attention. I needed an air horn. Next time I freak out and can't talk I'm getting me an air horn.

The voice was just starting to come to a low whisper level when I took 3 of the 4 monsters out for a day at Shawnee Mission Park last Sunday. It was so beautiful outdoors, in the upper 40's and low 50's that it felt like summer after that week of temps in the teens. Jeff had taken his youngest boy to ski up near Weston, MO so it was just me and the rest of the gang. David (Jeff's oldest) asked if he and Joey could hike down from the playground to see the ice on the lake and I said "Yes, but make sure you look out for Joey." It was a good LONG way down to the lake. I went off to get our picnic lunch carried down from the truck and was setting it up in the shelter. Elizabeth yelled out, "MOM, I think you'd better come see this!" I go running over to the top of the hill and the two boys are in the MIDDLE OF THE FREAKING LAKE ON THE ICE! OH my holy hell. I had NO VOICE. (and apparently no mind working to tell me to have Elizabeth yell for me). I scream-whispered GET OFF THE ICE! NOW! GET OFF THE ICE! It was this freaky horror movie sound effect thing that echoed through the hills. The boys looked up and saw me and apparently the mom-eye works from afar as they boogied themselves to the edge of the ice again. When Elizabeth and I hiked down there (a big-ass brush and tree covered hill) I asked David what part of "look out for Joey" didn't he understand. He said, "What? We had sticks." Yes, they were tapping the ice with the sticks. Then came a lesson in what happens when little boys are in the middle of the ice over a 30 foot deep lake by themselves with only a stick and the temperatures are WARMING UP. We all promised that none of us would go out onto frozen ice without a grown up with them to help pull them out and get help should something happen. cripes almighty. I did let the kids slide around for about another half hour but made everyone stay within 10 feet of the shore. Voice was officially gone once again. I also learned that I need to be a bit more detailed than "look out for Joey" to include "don't place my boy in mortal danger please." kids. Yes, I've TOTALLY gone sliding around on a frozen lake with a few cousins and no parents involved when I was a kid too, but it's a whole lot different from the mom-side of things.

Also in the last week I've now found holes in FOUR of my knitted socks. Of course, it's one sock each from FOUR PAIR of socks. grrrrrrrrr.... Now, being a woman who takes care of her feet, I'm thinking it's not just a coincidence that each of these socks suddenly sprang new holes. damn damn damn. I've microwaved all my socks and am finding a new place to keep them to see if I can quit feeding the yarn munching bastards, whatever they may be.

I'm back to knitting and even decided it was safe to crank out on a sweater again and give the freaky sock knitting a break. Ok, I'm still knitting socks, just not with every moment of my time. I finished the back and half the right front on the ribbed lace-front sweater from that Lingerie Style book in cascade 220 heathery blue. I'm LOVING this yarn. It's turning out spot on for gauge, but sure looks long and skinny. really skinny. I keep stretching it out and holding it up to me and it seems to look ok, but damn this thing will be form-fitting. I made one of the larger sizes and it's still really skinny. Guess this is why I should be knitting it in the damn round so I could be trying it on. Yeah. I know. Good thing I'm a process knitter and love the getting-there and don't mind frogging big projects, huh? I'm interested to see how this one turns out.

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