Tuesday, June 01, 2004

Children Make You Crazy

It doesn't even matter how old they are. My daughter is 19, wants to be a nurse. She can't get things together but doesn't want me to help. She's missed the deadline now for applying for nursing school for next semester...so now she'll be shooting for the spring semester. She will probably lose her scholarship. ARGHH! For 19, she's mostly pretty responsible -- and she's VERY independent -- but it makes me crazy when she does stuff like this.

I keep telling myself, though, that this too will pass.

It does help -- actually helps a lot -- that I worked child inpatient behavioral 2 nights over the long weekend. No matter how stressed, angry, or sullen my kids get -- they don't use drugs, I don't have to take "violence precautions" or "special precautions" (the new euphemism for sexual perpetrators) with them, and they are resilient. And content most of the time.

I will probably never again work 2 nights in a row, though...too tiring, all those sleeping changes. But the extra money will be helpful. I am about to dig my way out of the horrible divorce debacle in 1997, when the ex stuck me with all kinds of yucky debt (3 months of house payments, bill payments, plus credit cards he'd taken out in my name and charged up...to the tune of $18,000). It's been horrible, but I am almost there. $5,000 and dropping bit by bit. I pay off my daughter's orthodontia bill this month.

Perhaps I should have blogged this weekend -- it seems like I have a lot to say today. :)

Dad tells me he went out to the cemetary yesterday to participate in the Memorial Day functions. He's a vet, was on the Enterprise during WWII. He could never talk about it while we were young, and when we were older and would ask questions, he'd often tear up while telling us stories. Of course, he never told us the horrible ones...like the guy who walked into a propeller by mistake, or the time the Japanese pilot crashed into the #2 elevator, or the time he had to hide under a desk while bullets slammed into it. Two years ago, he asked me about post traumatic stress disorder -- apparently someone at the VFW was getting disability for that, and he wanted to know all about it. When we talked, it turned out Dad had all the symptoms, but had never told anyone. So I suggested he talk to the psychologist at the VA...and what do you know, they put him on disability even though he is retired. He's been to some groups where they all talk about it; he says most of the guys are younger and from 'Nam so he doesn't really feel like he fits. But he talks about it more to ME -- which seems to be helping. Plus the disability money makes him feel like maybe the government really does care about what he went through during the war.

Ten years ago, his house was broken into, and (among other things) all his medals were stolen. I contacted Don Nickles, our representative at the time, and he said he couldn't help me, that Dad was just out of luck. What a jerk -- obviously, he's not there to help his constituents. I wrote to the Pentagon (not knowing what else to do) and some lovely person there (whose name was unreadable on the letter, maybe on purpose because I bet they're not supposed to do that kind of thing) sent a set of replacements. Turns out, though, that all I had to do was go through the VA. Duh. They even have a form for it and you get the first replacement set free. But he was thrilled to have them replaced -- I didn't tell him I was doing it, just surprised him (and if you knew how much trouble I have keeping secrets, you'd be impressed). In going through the Navy, though, it turns out you can ALSO get mini medals -- so he has those pinned to his VFW hat. Of course, all his cronies there had to get them, too.

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