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Old 10-11-2005, 04:00 PM   #1
WSUCougar
Rider Of Rohan
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Port Angeles, WA or Helm's Deep
Cool Parents Anonymous, FOFC Branch

I know there are many other parents here at FOFC, so I thought I’d start a casual dynasty thread where we could share our stories. Good stuff, bad stuff, frustrations, joys, questions…anything goes.

Hopefully, we can build a decent group of participants, and it could make for some entertaining reading. To the non-parents out there, beware…some of this stuff can be a tad scary. And gross. But anyway…
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Old 10-11-2005, 04:00 PM   #2
WSUCougar
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Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Port Angeles, WA or Helm's Deep
I’ll go first. My name is WSUCougar, and I’m a parent. *tearful sniffling*

My son’s name is Drew, and he is closing in on his 4th birthday. He’s an awesome kid, and I love him dearly. Here are some recent tidbits:

• He is finally over the hump in terms of pooping on the potty. This has been a struggle without many glimmers of hope, but suddenly we’re there, as everyone promised would happen. There are still some “technical difficulties” to cope with, but we will face those without looking back. This was a huge relief and a joyous moment.
• We promised Drew a “real train ride” as a reward for his potty rite-of-passage. He has always loved trains. The curious thing is that he once loved Thomas the Tank Engine videos, but got freaked out last year when one of the nasty engines got very physical. Since then, he claims very firmly, “I don’t like Thomas.” He still plays with the train set, but will not watch the videos or the TV show. As an aside, I find it strange that it’s for kids but some of the characters and “messages” aren’t very good. Lots of anger, jealousy, and revenge, for example. Ah well.
• PBS Kids just switched their format and schedule, to our utter dismay and disgust. They call themselves “PBS Kids Sprout” now, and all of the favorite shows aren’t on at the right times anymore. Grrrrr.
• Drew is trying YMCA soccer, and it has been a test for me. Granted, this is VERY basic stuff for 3-4 year olds. Basically stretch some, kick the ball around a cone, listen to the coach, and run around. But my son’s reactions have frustrated me…which is something I will need to learn to cope with. He won’t do a lot of what the coach says, and starts boo-hooing at the drop of a hat. Lots of kids are having similar reactions, but it still grates on me. At least this past Saturday he got a bit more involved. Small steps.
• Lots of contrary talk and “But…” responses lately. Seems to be trying to establish control over things. Gets PISSED when things get forced on him.
• Halloween is coming, and Drew is jazzed. He wants to be a black cat.
• When I see my son smile his real, joyful smile it makes me feel unlike any other feeling in my life.
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Old 10-11-2005, 04:35 PM   #3
Radii
Head Coach
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by WSUCougar
• Drew is trying YMCA soccer, and it has been a test for me. Granted, this is VERY basic stuff for 3-4 year olds. Basically stretch some, kick the ball around a cone, listen to the coach, and run around. But my son’s reactions have frustrated me…which is something I will need to learn to cope with. He won’t do a lot of what the coach says, and starts boo-hooing at the drop of a hat. Lots of kids are having similar reactions, but it still grates on me. At least this past Saturday he got a bit more involved. Small steps.


Great idea, I'm sure my wife will be a frequent contributor here and I'll drop by quite a bit as well.


I just deleted a *huge* reply when I realized most of what I typed was about my kid and not yours, when my intent was to reply to what you're saying about your son

I felt the same frustration when I first entered my son's life(he was 5). Boo-hoo'ing and running to mommy at every bump and scratch, and more importantly to me, not sitting with the team when he wasn't on the field, bugged me an awful lot. The first year I watched him play the kids that were "on the bench" actually ran up a hill to a playground near a field and palyed there when they weren't in the game if allowed, or they played on the hill, rolling down it, etc. Remembering my days in T-ball at age 6, this frustrated me a lot.


I found that the best thing I could do was to very gently start to instill the ideas of team spirit, and of getting up and playing on when you got a little bump. He's 8 years old now and i'm sure mostly through just getting older and maturing, but also through my wife's and my encouragement, he's becoming quite a warrior on the field. I have not once this season(and I am his assistant coach, so i hear most everything all the kids say) heard him complain or whine when he gets bumped or knocked over, and not once has he run in the direction of his mom when he comes off the field, he comes over to the coaches and hangs out with the team. I'm as proud of these things as I am the fact that he's becoming a good little soccer player. But this is now 5 or 6 soccer seasons down the road from where we started. It's a very slow, but steady process.

Like you said, small steps. It'll take a number of seasons, and the kids around him maturing, and the coaches actively trying to keep the kids on the sideline with the team, and not with the parents, to see major progress there, but it'll come.
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Old 10-11-2005, 04:48 PM   #4
ibnsgirl
H.S. Freshman Team
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: South Texas
Cool idea, WSUCougar! I have been on quite a few parent-oriented forums, but they were all geared towards moms. As a mom, that's fine, but there is no guy's input. I look forward to actually hearing the "dad" side of the story.

Anyway, I'm Lucy's mom and TonyR's wife. We barely have this parent thing down as Lucy is just shy of 14 weeks old.

Been an interesting ride, so far. Not quite sleeping through the night. Little stuff sends her wailing. Constantly covered in spit-up. But all of that is offset by this little miracle's coo's and smiles! Definately the smiles!

Lucy is already in the works to be a soccer player. She was using my ribs to practice on long before she was born. She's even got her favorite player: Ilkka Vitkainen, one of the players on my Hattrick team. She loves the word "ilkka." We've got a long way to go before soccer practice!
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Old 10-11-2005, 05:02 PM   #5
WSUCougar
Rider Of Rohan
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Port Angeles, WA or Helm's Deep
Cool! Participants!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Radii
The first year I watched him play the kids that were "on the bench" actually ran up a hill to a playground near a field and palyed there when they weren't in the game if allowed, or they played on the hill, rolling down it, etc. Remembering my days in T-ball at age 6, this frustrated me a lot.
I had to smile at this. My son and two of his friends were playing a falling down game in the midst of the soccer scrimmage. The ball and a horde of 3-year-olds goes churning by, and there's Drew, Matthew, and John giggling at each other and falling down in dramatic fashion.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ibnsgirl
We barely have this parent thing down as Lucy is just shy of 14 weeks old.
Oh wow...the Dark Times. :o

Just kidding. You'll make it through with flying colors, and then for the rest of your parenting days you'll look back on that time and go, "Well, at least it's not as hard as THAT time period!"
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Old 10-11-2005, 06:03 PM   #6
MacroGuru
Coordinator
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Utah
Awesome...

I forgot what dealing with a baby was like....

Imagine to my dismay when my wife breaks the news on New Years we are pregnant, considering I had the procedure done....

9 months later, the little tyke is here, and things couldn't be better, except, I forgot that baby's wake up at night.

Now the other task is the 8 and 5 year old. They are both striving for attention from mom.

prime examples
  • 8 year old kicks the 5 year old in the face this morning, and claims....it was an accident
  • 5 year old likes to sneak into the pantry and take food to the neighborhood kids, we are now the 7-11 of the block
  • Halloween is awesome around our house, thanks to the wife, and she has the kids as excited as she is, and we are going to be a dead pirate family........with the baby being our pet monkey.
  • Oh...and they both seem to think money grows on trees, the 8 year old said she wanted a credit card so she could by anything she wants, which produced a WTF? response from me, and she received a very boring education on credit and what it is all about...
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Old 10-11-2005, 06:28 PM   #7
Breeze
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Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Northern Suburbs of ATL
Quote:
Originally Posted by indoorsoccersim
she received a very boring education on credit and what it is all about...[/list]


I wonder how many of these she'll need before she finally gets it?

I have 3 kids, a 5 year old boy and two 3 year olds, one of each. I'm sure I'll be posting here too.

Our biggest problem right now is taking turns talking. Man you'd think our house was the stock exchange with all the racket as each kid tries to talk over the other one.

For Halloween, we are going as 2 knights and a princess (pink princess to be more precise). We were going to be a Dragon, Knight and Princess, but when the 3 year old boy realized he wouldn't get a sword if he were a dragon, he changed his mind.

Last edited by Breeze : 10-11-2005 at 06:29 PM.
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Old 10-11-2005, 06:58 PM   #8
Radii
Head Coach
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Quote:
Originally Posted by indoorsoccersim
[*]Oh...and they both seem to think money grows on trees, the 8 year old said she wanted a credit card so she could by anything she wants, which produced a WTF? response from me, and she received a very boring education on credit and what it is all about...


I went to the ATM yesterday to get some cash with my son in the car. He said "at least this isn't our money like the money at home." He explained that the money that came out of the machine was free money for everyone to use, and that the money from my job was all at home for things like eating out.
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Old 10-11-2005, 07:16 PM   #9
oliegirl
Head Cheerleader
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Caught somewhere between Raising Hell and Amazing Grace...
This is a great idea! I love that we'll have somewhere to vent, and to tell stories about our kids (good or bad) without non-parent people getting sarcastic and making "I don't care" comments...they just don't get it!

I am sure once I think about it I'll have lots of things to add, but for now, I'll just say that the kid radii is talking about is my kid - Anthony...I was a single mom for 6 years until I got lucky and radii proposed (I knew if I waited long enough the right guy would come along!). Anthony is wonderful - most of the time...like any child he has his moments when I want to kill him, but for the most part they are few and far between.
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Old 10-11-2005, 10:31 PM   #10
sachmo71
The boy who cried Trout
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: TX
Have to get me some of this.

I have two wonderful children. My daughter is 3, named Sydney.
My son, 2, is Max.

There are a multiple issues right now that we are dealing with.
Max is being potty trained. I guess I never thought about the challenges of potty training a boy, but I never thought about the stand up factor. So my wife read up on it, and the key seems to be putting him on the toilet backwards, so he is facing the potty like he will be when he's standing up, but had most of the bowl to aim for. We aren't using training potty's, because it worked better for my daughter on a normal toilet and so we'll see how it goes with my son. Also, he is in speech therapy because he was a little delayed, and he is talking up a storm. It's a wonderful feeling when the kids start putting words together and you can actually get some feedback from them. My favorite words are "football", "hockey man", and "boo" (his bear)

Sydney is a handful, and then some. We started both of our kids out at a home daycare, with an older lady who would watch them all day. It was relaxed, and there was no real learning activities...she was more of a babysitter, but she was within our budget and she loved the kids. At about 2, she started biting. Not much, but it happened one day. One of my friends decided to take his daughter there, because we recommended her and the price was right. For the five days his daughter was there, Sydney bit her every day. It was horrible!
So we would try to tell her not to do it anymore, but what can you say to a two year old when you aren't "on the scene"?
Anyway, so we took her to a day school, and things started out fine. She was learning at a very rapid pace, and everyone seemed happy. Then, she started biting kids. Every day it seemed, she would bite someone. We talked to the headmaster, who is also a psychologist. He gave us some tips, and never overtly blaming us, but the gist of his advice was that the child will do what the parents let them do. In our minds, we were BAD PARENTS.
So we tried his advice, and I have to admit, things got a little better, but I think we lost focus. Finally, she bit a kid so bad that their parents delivered an ultimatum...it was Sydney gone or her kid gone. So Sydney was out.

Thankfully, he kept working with us, in the hopes of her getting back in. We tried everything that he said to do. Walks when she lost her temper. The 5 rules. EVERYTHING. Finally, he let her back in. And it worked out well...for a while.

She started biting again, and not listening to the teachers. Every day we would get a report on what she was doing wrong, etc. Neither my wife nor I wanted to show our faces in the place. The guy must have thought we were the worst parents in the world, perhaps only a bit less than we did. Failures. Losers. My mindset at the time was that my wife and I together were possibly causing more damage to our kids than we would apart. I was actually comtemplting a seperation to see if that will help. Desperate, eh?

Finally, they told us she had to leave for good. Talk about a kick in the jumblies. She had lots of friends at that school, but it was just too much for them to handle. We didn't know what to do. So we scrambled to find her a new place, which we did after a couple of days. We also started seeing a family councelor to help us, as we were obviously in dire need.

The counceling has helped tremendously. The doctor first tried to get everyone to calm down a bit, and that helped settle Sydney down. He told us that she seemed overstimulated, so much so that he was afraid she was borderline autistic. His main focus was alone time with one or the other of us, less stimulation (which meant removing many of the gobs of toys from the playroom), and lots and lots of praise.
It's been wonderful. We still have our moments, and she will always be a high strung kid, mostly because he says she has above average intelligence and gets frusterated with her own limitations. But it's been almost two weeks at school with hardly a peep from her, and when she does misbehave, she is quick to apologize, and best of all...NO BITING.
The thing that surprised me was how often he stops to tell my wife and I what a good job we are doing, which we really needed. He's not afraid to tell us where we are lacking, but he says that most parents he deals with are resistant to his advice, and usually the behavioral problems are caused by some sort of family dysfunction. It was really good to hear that we weren't horrible parents. It's been a rough couple of years with all of that blame heaped on top of us.

So things are definately looking up for us.

As an aside, is anyone else starting to worry about this damn bird flu? I try and try to resist the media monkey fest, but when I start hearing "casualty projections" and "6 months before a cure", I start to sweat a little.
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Old 10-11-2005, 10:47 PM   #11
oliegirl
Head Cheerleader
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Caught somewhere between Raising Hell and Amazing Grace...
Quote:
As an aside, is anyone else starting to worry about this damn bird flu? I try and try to resist the media monkey fest, but when I start hearing "casualty projections" and "6 months before a cure", I start to sweat a little.

Funny you should mention that - yesterday morning, I found a bird lying chest down on our front porch. At first I thought it was dead, but then realized it was breathing very rapidly...I managed to pick it up and put in a box with some tissue paper and leaves/pine straw, by then it was standing but still breathing very rapidly. I took it to a local vet and they said they would check it and if it was suffering, put it down...it didn't occur to me until after the fact that I should have been more cautious...I doubt this bird was infected with bird flu, but it did enter my mind as I was scrubbing my hands clean! I haven't heard from the vet's office, and I am sure if they were suspicious of something they would have contacted me, so I am not worried (anymore) :|
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Old 10-11-2005, 11:43 PM   #12
PilotMan
Coordinator
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Seven miles up
I have to say that this is a very cool idea. I have already enjoyed what the rest of you have written.

I am a dad of 3. My oldest is Cole, he is 10. Then there is Zachary who is 3 and Ean who is 2.

Cole is my wife's from before we met, however, I have known him since he was 2, and I am the only Dad that he has ever had. I officially adopted him after we were married. Zach and Ean are my firsts.

We are in the first year of homeschooling Cole. I was finally fed up with the school system here. It just was not working for Cole. Cole has inattentive - ADD, which means that he has a very difficult time staying on task unless he gets his meds. For him it's like trying to watch a TV show, while someone else is changing the channel. Hard to stay focused. It has been a challenge at times, but I can see that we are working toward our goal of getting him to work on his own, and learn the study skills that he is going to need to succeed. Those were the things that he was really missing and that we are trying to give him. When we go to the library and are checking out books about the revolutionary war and he is legitimatly excited about the subject you feel like you are on the right path.

Cole is not a big sports person. Much to my dismay.
Cole has a terrible time remembering things - part of the ADD. Frustrating......
Cole reads like you wouldn't believe. He devours books.

Zach is the ring leader of the whole crew. Even of Cole. He sets the tone for everyone. He is an anal, perfectionist, who loves trains, Thomas the Tank engine, and anything train related. He is a social butterfly, who can grab the attention of anyone around him. He likes to tell stangers that "He loves them" I get a kick out of that. He is stuttering a little, but it doesn't keep him from really communicating, and it is usually due to his mind working way faster than his mouth. And it comes out like he is really excited, "I-I-I-I saw the choo-choo!" We are not drawing attention to it, as he will likely grow out of it. He also loves anything that Cole does. He played soccer this summer and had fun. He is potty training at night, as the daytime is down solid now.

Ean is sly, sneaky, way too smart for his own good, "I can solve any problem that is in my way," little boy. He just turned 2, and is interested in potty training, but we aren't pushing it. It will come when it comes. Ean also has had his biting problems, but since he stays home, we just get to deal with it here. Most of it, it seems is that he is trying to communicate his desires and he is not being heard, so his reply is to bite. Zach is ususally the recipient. Ean is a brute. He is 18mo younger than Zach and at least as strong. He has actually hauled Zach up a hill in a wagon and Zach alone outweighs him by 5 pounds, not including the wagon! He is built like I am, big! He is tough, shrugs off most falls, and injuries. He fell from standing on a chair in the kitchen and cried for 3 seconds and got up and kept going. Scared him more than anything. He like Barney, and he wants to do anything that Zach does.

They are all best friends, and I get the feeling that they are forming the bonds right now, that they will share the rest of thier lives. We are very happy.

Of course, there is always a darker side. The company that I work for has gone into bankruptcy and I am awaiting word on how many pilots are going to be laid off. I think that I am safe for now, but with 5 mouths to feed, the pressure and stress is overwhelming. I will have more later or as things happen.

Sachmo...about the bird flu. No. There has yet to be a case in the US, and there is no idea when one will ever happen. The media wants to see you scared so that you will keep watching. Just live man. Remember how bad SARS was supposed to be. You are better off worrying about dying falling down the stairs or being in a car accident. At this point they are much more probable.
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Old 10-12-2005, 07:29 AM   #13
WSUCougar
Rider Of Rohan
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Port Angeles, WA or Helm's Deep
Quote:
Originally Posted by sachmo71
Every day we would get a report on what she was doing wrong, etc. Neither my wife nor I wanted to show our faces in the place. The guy must have thought we were the worst parents in the world, perhaps only a bit less than we did. Failures. Losers. My mindset at the time was that my wife and I together were possibly causing more damage to our kids than we would apart. I was actually comtemplting a seperation to see if that will help. Desperate, eh?
Wow, powerful emotions. I can totally relate to that “worst parent in the world” feeling. A remember a low point for me was very early on, when Drew was an infant and I was on leave while my wife had just gone back to work. Drew had this tendency to cry/scream in what we called “wildcat” fits, you know – the really worst ones - and one day he was on his FIFTH wildcat when I just lost it. I screamed back at him, cussed a lot, and started throwing pillows and stuff against the wall. In the end it was just a loud vent session, but I hated myself for quite awhile. I thought I was the worst father ever.

Quote:
It's been wonderful. We still have our moments, and she will always be a high strung kid, mostly because he says she has above average intelligence and gets frusterated with her own limitations. But it's been almost two weeks at school with hardly a peep from her, and when she does misbehave, she is quick to apologize, and best of all...NO BITING. The thing that surprised me was how often he stops to tell my wife and I what a good job we are doing, which we really needed. He's not afraid to tell us where we are lacking, but he says that most parents he deals with are resistant to his advice, and usually the behavioral problems are caused by some sort of family dysfunction. It was really good to hear that we weren't horrible parents. It's been a rough couple of years with all of that blame heaped on top of us.

So things are definately looking up for us.
Great news! I think it serves as strong grounding for a parent to realize daily that your kid isn’t the only one doing what they’re doing, and you’re not the only parent facing this. Seriously.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PilotMan
When we go to the library and are checking out books about the revolutionary war and he is legitimatly excited about the subject you feel like you are on the right path.
Very cool!

Quote:
He is an anal perfectionist, who loves trains, Thomas the Tank engine, and anything train related.
Perfectly describes my son.

Quote:
Of course, there is always a darker side. The company that I work for has gone into bankruptcy and I am awaiting word on how many pilots are going to be laid off. I think that I am safe for now, but with 5 mouths to feed, the pressure and stress is overwhelming. I will have more later or as things happen.
Yes, please keep us apprised, and good luck with your current company. I assume you work for an airline? Tough industry that is hard to comprehend these days.

I have to say that becoming a parent sure changed my outlook on career. As a “provider” the safety net is gone. I have also become much more rooted despite being in an agency that favors relocation for promotion.
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Old 10-12-2005, 08:15 AM   #14
sachmo71
The boy who cried Trout
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: TX
Quote:
Originally Posted by pilotman
Sachmo...about the bird flu. No. There has yet to be a case in the US, and there is no idea when one will ever happen. The media wants to see you scared so that you will keep watching. Just live man. Remember how bad SARS was supposed to be. You are better off worrying about dying falling down the stairs or being in a car accident. At this point they are much more probable.

Thanks very much...that eases the stress quite a bit. Stupid SARS. Funny about the media; the more gloom they put out, the less I want to watch.
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Old 10-12-2005, 09:06 AM   #15
FrogMan
Hattrick Moderator
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Pintendre, Qc, Canada
ahhh, so this is where all the FOFC parents hang out, cool

Seriously, great idea WSUCougar. I've not read everyone's comments so far but I will and will probably comment on some of them. I will certainly come here to post every once in a while about my own kiddos.

I'm the lucky dad of two wonderful sons: Andrew and Matthew. While these names sound top 10 in the nation to most of you around here, I have to remind you I live in French speaking Quebec City, land of the Stéphane, François, and where Steve (my first name) is most often spelled Steeve, so they do stand out in a crowd around here

This could be long, here are some specifics about each of them...

Andrew:
  • Andrew was born in Pittsfield, MA, giving something special over his classmates: he has dual citizenship.
  • He's now eight and a half
  • A real bright kid but is a mover and shaker, always jumping around, not really hyperactive, but needs to move
  • He can be a real rebellious kiddo at times and that started very early on. The word "no" was often met with him doing exactly what we didn't want him to do. My sister, who has no kid but is trying to, will always tell that story of the day where he swatted a plant at my parents. I told him "no" once, he did it again a bit more fervently. "No Andrew, don't do that" and he was doing it a bit more roughly, but with two hands in the plant. All the way looking at me with a smug smile. I got up from the coucha at that point while saying firmly "Andrew, stop that" and he went all crazy on the poor plant. The plant survived though and we still laugh about it today.
  • He has been practicing kenpo karate since he was 5 and is now a blue belt w/green stripe. I started karate about a year after he did to be able to follow if whatever he was doing was about right, especially when he was practicing his forms for a competition. I needed to pick up a new sport after injuring my knee in football and karate offered a controlled environment in which I could go at my own pace. Our school offers parents/kids classes at the same time (in different room) so it was perfect. Turns out it motivated him quite a bit to keep going on and while I've now gotten to a higher belt than he is, he really wants to try and get to his next belt so he can get as close to me as possible. Kind of cool to come out of karate practice on a Saturday morning and ask him what he practiced and know what he's talking about. The one other sport with which this could have happened is hockey, but he was never really interested in it, oh the shame. Nah, not really
  • He also has been playing soccer in the Summer since he was 5 and WSUCougar (and Radii) I can understand what you both mean so easily. As I said, he's 8 but he still does the kind of thing that drive me nuts. This Summer, he played with the city U9 selection team as an 8yo, so with kids mostly one year older than him. At one point, I tried teaching him stuff after the game, like how to position himself and he kept telling me it was not how it had happened in the game (remember, I said rebellious) and I got fed up. Didn't offer advice for a couple of weeks. I try not to be too demanding of him, but if there'S one thing I won't accept, it's when he refuses to listen, or try. I will never ask of him to be the best of the best, only that he tries *his* best, that he gives his all when he does something.
  • Among other interests have been Thomas The Tank Engine (and train in general) for many years, although this has faded as he grew up. In the past few years, Spiderman has been his main thing with a major interest in Lego blocks, especially the Bionicle series. This past year has been mostly Star Wars, culminating in him disguising as Darth Vader for the upcoming halloween
  • He's in 3rd grade and does really well in school if not for the fact that he always has to keep his mouth in check. He tends to know the answer to most questions but often forgets to raise his hand to answer. This has meant many little communication from his teacher to that effect and many "challenges" to do better. I thinks the fact that he was a lonely child (and grandchild on either side) for the first 7 years of his life has made greedy with attention and he's gotten used to having all of it. We're still teaching him that it's not right to cut off two people who are talking (say me and my wife) just because you have something to say.

Matthew:
  • Matthew was born in Quebec and will turn 21 months old on Saturday.
  • While there's nearly a 7 year difference between him and his big brother, they do share a special bond. Matty is calling Andrew's name all the time, especially whenever he sees something that reminds him of Andrew.
  • He is quite the impersonator and he mimics about everything we do. Show him something once and he'll repeat it pretty easily. Probably because of that part of his nature, we find him quite a bit talkative, especially compared to what we remember Andrew being at his age. He repeats everything we say especially connecting stuff he sees with the person it belongs to or remind him. A soccer ball? Aaaannnnew. My sweater? Paapaa. My wife's slippers? Maaamaaan. Pretty funny.
  • He smiles when he sees me or Andrew practice a karate move or two. When I ask him if he does karate, he starts shaking his hands in a kind of block
  • We've not really started potty training him. The pot is in the first floor bathroom and he's sit on it a few times, even peeing in it a time or two. He seems aware of when his diaper is filthy as he will usually tap on it and say "caca", so I'd assume it will come in due time. We never really pressured Andrew to the potty training and while it did take a while, it was eventually done...
  • Since my wife and I both work, Matthew has to go to a daycare. It's a fairly big place, subsidized by the Quebec Government, so it's fairly cheap with good services. The one thing sad about it is that he's in a group of 10-12 kiddos. That's nice for socializing but bad with microbes and the like. He's already going through his second cold of the Fall season and we're only in mid-October. For now, knock on wood, he's not as inclined to ear infections as his brother was, so a cold comes and goes. Ear infections suck.
  • My wife working, and working weird shifts like nights for the last 6 months or so, has also contributed to Matty being quite the daddy's son, while Andrew was more of a momma's boy. This is something I didn't live with Andrew. A bump, a bruise, he'd run to mamma. With Matty, it's the exact opposite. While it can be fun at times, almost rewarding, I sometimes find it almost taxing, especially in the morning when it's me and the boys, bugging one to get ready to go to school, the other dressed and ready to go to daycare gives me a whole new perspective on how single parents can deal with kids on a daily basis. Hats off to you my friends!
  • Some may remember me posting about him going through a fairly long period of diarrhea last Winter. Well, he got over it, but we now have to watch him so he doesn't get constipated. We have to watch his diet to make sure he has a bowel movement about every two days at the worst because if he doesn't, he gets all fussy on the third day (who wouldn't?) and looks uncomfortable. This means not too much bananas on some days.
  • Speaking of eating, Matty is the big eater of the two. Man can he eat. And he eats of everything. I've not found much that he doesn't like, quite the opposite of his brother who is quite the picky eater.
All in all, we got two amazing kids and even though I whine sometimes, I wouldn't change anything about my life as a dad.


FM
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Old 10-12-2005, 11:53 AM   #16
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So Steve when are you going to grace us with Excel spreadsheet about your kids
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Old 10-12-2005, 12:00 PM   #17
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Dola,

I'm expecting my first in mid January so I will be here posting soon
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Old 10-12-2005, 12:02 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by KevinNU7
So Steve when are you going to grace us with Excel spreadsheet about your kids

hehehe

I think my kids are probably the only part of my life that is not, in some way, represented in an Excel spreadsheet

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Old 10-12-2005, 12:03 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by KevinNU7
Dola,

I'm expecting my first in mid January so I will be here posting soon

Matthew was born on January 15, will be two when yours show up

Welcome to our world

FM
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Old 10-12-2005, 12:13 PM   #20
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I don't have a kid (yet - probably 2-3 years away) but I think this is a great idea. I'll be following along, if that is allowed
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Old 10-12-2005, 12:16 PM   #21
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Hey, you're the doc, I don't know about otherts, but I was hoping you'd be following along

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Old 10-12-2005, 12:24 PM   #22
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hehehe

I think my kids are probably the only part of my life that is not, in some way, represented in an Excel spreadsheet

FM
If you track your checking acocunts in Excel like I do then I'd imagine your kids are in Excel atleast financially
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Old 10-12-2005, 12:48 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by FrogMan
Hey, you're the doc, I don't know about otherts, but I was hoping you'd be following along

FM

I second the emotion...
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Old 10-12-2005, 12:52 PM   #24
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Great thread, parents. I'll be reading along, hoping to pick up some pointers for when the time comes a few years down the road...
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Old 10-12-2005, 12:56 PM   #25
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This is awesome, this is what I need today...

Okay, I'm a daddy. I have a beautiful daughter, she's 4 years, less than four months from turning 5.

Her name is Zia.

But it's all confusing.

Why so? Well, because I'm not the birth father. I'm really just now, an ex-boyfriend, who at the time was the only father figure.

But we never told my daughter, and I'm not sure when the truth will be illuminated.

Never adopted by me, I retain no legal rights, but I can arrange doctor appontments (whenever my ex decides to get insurance) and I get her every other weekend.

Now for the longest time I was raising her, so now I'm in withdrawl because it's long before I get to spend time, and it's limited in that it's just about 3 nights, and 2 days (I pick her up Friday evenings).

So today, my ex calls (She is married now) and tells me wonderful news, she's got a new job, decent pay and insurance.

So I'm happy that my smart wonderful daughter will now visit the doctor and the dentist, but frustrated because my ex seems to have everything go her way...and when it doesn't; it doesn't really affect her as much as it does my daughter.

I try to provide stability, but I feel like I'm losing ground. I try to be a better man and be happy for my ex, but I feel envious. I was the good guy, and I'm struggling, not to accept...but amazed at how well everything turns out while I have to settle for less, for me and my daughter.

I'm going to Australia in two weeks, I'm contemplating not returning, in fact, if it weren't for my daughter, I wouldn't, I'd rather start anew.

She's the only reason I'd come back; She's the only reason I stick around.

I get a call everyday, "When are you coming to pick me up?" or "I really miss you", generally both. I know sometimes it's embellishment because Zia is the center of my attention when she's over, she really is my world.

It's been two years since her mom and I split. I was there for ultrasounds, I was there for the birth, the first time she rolled over, the first words, crawling, standing, walking, love yous...sometimes I feel that I won't be seeing more, I got her first bike, her first bed, I make her brush her teeth, she learned my street address first, she knows my phone number (and can dial it), she knows what 911 is and what to do in most emergencies. She's brash and tough, she amazes my friends with her manners. She's has my personality, she learned to pout from me, and I read her stories and she's learned how to say "secured" and "explanation" and what they means; she sings to the Talking Heads, Janis Joplin, Sonny and Cher (don't ask), Booker T and the MGs, Sam and Dave...

She's my best memory of everything.

Everyday is hard, but like Homer, I do it for her.
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:02 PM   #26
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Forgot to mention the latest thing that happened with Andrew: a lie, not a tiny one, a pretty good one, at least to my eyes.

Let's put it in perspective. In his class, there's this thing where every kid has a spider with his/her number on it. Every Monday, every kid's spider starts the week in the grass, you want your spider to keep playing in the grass. A kid's spider goes up one step if in the day the kid has been warned more than once on any of 5 simple class rules. The one rule with which Andrew has the most problem, and you might be able to guess it if you read my long post, is speaking without being allowd to (i.e. not having raised his hand to ask for permission to speak). If your spider doesn't move up at all, you get some reward (that the kid has previously picked out of possible rewards, Andrew has picked a 10 minute period on their class computer as a reward I think). If your spider moves up one rank, you don't automatically get your reward but your name is put in a drawing to maybe get picked for a reward. Up two and three ranks you're in the grey zone, nothing really happens. Four ranks, the kid has to write his challenge in his notebook and get it signed by his parents and 5 ranks, the teacher writes something to the parents, mostly so the kids sees it's important to behave.

Three weeks ago, Andrew had a rough week relatively speaking, getting 2 or more warnings on all but one day, so his spider went up to the 4th rank, not good. He wrote his little message and we had a good talk. The following week, so the week before last week, he went all but one day with less than two warnings, so all in all a very good week. No need to tell you we praised him and told him not to give in to the temptation of talking without raising his hand. He seemed in high spirit and when he kept telling me all last week that it was going great and he was getting warned only once a day, I saw nothing wrong with it. I'm sure you see where I'm going with this. Turns out is week last week was not that good. he was warned two or three times even in some days for 4 out of the 5 days. When he was telling us that everything was fine. Now, remember that a kid with 4 bad days in a week has to write a note to his parents. When Friday morning came, he got absolutely desperate and admitted to his teacher that he'd been lying to us. I think she handled it very well, as she had him write a fairly long letter, at least for a 3rd grader, in which he explained that he was sorry he'd lied to us, that he didn't want to disappoint us by telling us it wasn't going well. He was in tears when he presented me the letter after I'd picked him up from school. I'm usually fairly prompt to reprimand him, but I just couldn't go hard on him. I simply told him that he had to see this as a lesson, that everything you say and do can, and often will be held against you at some point in the future. Same, as I reminded him, that if I asked his karate teacher if it had gone well and he lied to me, I'd have a chance to talk to his teacher at one point someday. I also asked him if he thought he'd get away with it, knowing he had to write something if it didn't go right in the week. He acknowledged that he had not thought about that.

I then told him that trust is something you build over time, but that you can destroy quite rapidly. I also told him that he had to see this as a lesson. I'm like that in life, and with my kids. It's not always a big deal if you screw up, as long as you learn from it and don't do it again. Nothing irks me more than a person (say a coworker) who keeps making the same mistake (or a similar mistake) over and over.

Thing is, a bit like sachmo and the weight of being the worst parents in the world, I felt a bit guilty for what he'd done. Had we put too much pressure on him? Had we put too much emphasis on the good, so much so that it made the lie look like nothing much? Sigh, kids can bring so much to ya, but they also force you to be a better person...

The lie in itself isn't that big deal, it's the realization that he can lie to us, knowingly, and with it, the fact that we could lose control over him like that. He's only 8, yet he's already 8. We know what he's doing most of the time, but someday he'll be with kids we don't know about, even though we'll try to know what he does in his time, but it doesn't take much to lose him, or any kid. That's my fear, not a big fear, but one I've got in the back of my mind...

Thanks for reading.


FM
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:03 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qwikshot
This is awesome, this is what I need today...

Okay, I'm a daddy. I have a beautiful daughter, she's 4 years, less than four months from turning 5.

Her name is Zia.

But it's all confusing.

Why so? Well, because I'm not the birth father. I'm really just now, an ex-boyfriend, who at the time was the only father figure.

But we never told my daughter, and I'm not sure when the truth will be illuminated.

Never adopted by me, I retain no legal rights, but I can arrange doctor appontments (whenever my ex decides to get insurance) and I get her every other weekend.

Now for the longest time I was raising her, so now I'm in withdrawl because it's long before I get to spend time, and it's limited in that it's just about 3 nights, and 2 days (I pick her up Friday evenings).

So today, my ex calls (She is married now) and tells me wonderful news, she's got a new job, decent pay and insurance.

So I'm happy that my smart wonderful daughter will now visit the doctor and the dentist, but frustrated because my ex seems to have everything go her way...and when it doesn't; it doesn't really affect her as much as it does my daughter.

I try to provide stability, but I feel like I'm losing ground. I try to be a better man and be happy for my ex, but I feel envious. I was the good guy, and I'm struggling, not to accept...but amazed at how well everything turns out while I have to settle for less, for me and my daughter.

I'm going to Australia in two weeks, I'm contemplating not returning, in fact, if it weren't for my daughter, I wouldn't, I'd rather start anew.

She's the only reason I'd come back; She's the only reason I stick around.

I get a call everyday, "When are you coming to pick me up?" or "I really miss you", generally both. I know sometimes it's embellishment because Zia is the center of my attention when she's over, she really is my world.

It's been two years since her mom and I split. I was there for ultrasounds, I was there for the birth, the first time she rolled over, the first words, crawling, standing, walking, love yous...sometimes I feel that I won't be seeing more, I got her first bike, her first bed, I make her brush her teeth, she learned my street address first, she knows my phone number (and can dial it), she knows what 911 is and what to do in most emergencies. She's brash and tough, she amazes my friends with her manners. She's has my personality, she learned to pout from me, and I read her stories and she's learned how to say "secured" and "explanation" and what they means; she sings to the Talking Heads, Janis Joplin, Sonny and Cher (don't ask), Booker T and the MGs, Sam and Dave...

She's my best memory of everything.

Everyday is hard, but like Homer, I do it for her.

Alright, damn near made me cry here..I feel for you, and I feel for the decision you are now thrusting upon yourself with Australia.

Please, let us know, keep us up to date on anything and everything, and hey, if you just need to vent and/or chat...PM, I am willing to be that person that listens....
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:09 PM   #28
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Wow, Qwik...what a wonderful yet terrible situation to be in. You sound like such a devoted parent. Seriously, man.

Yet I'm not sure where things could lead with that, at least from a legal standpoint. It sounds like you are on decent terms with your ex, but how is she as a parent? Is she as devoted to Zia as you are? What does she say/think about you and Zia? Ever discuss things in a future sense?

I'm not sure what else to say, except to say keep posting about your feelings.
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:18 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrogMan
The lie in itself isn't that big deal, it's the realization that he can lie to us, knowingly, and with it, the fact that we could lose control over him like that. He's only 8, yet he's already 8. We know what he's doing most of the time, but someday he'll be with kids we don't know about, even though we'll try to know what he does in his time, but it doesn't take much to lose him, or any kid. That's my fear, not a big fear, but one I've got in the back of my mind...
I can totally relate. My son is only pushing four, but I have that same fear lurking in my mind. The little voice that says, "If he does X behavior now, and you don't nip it in the bud, just think what it might develop into...YOU MUST BE A BAD PARENT!"

One of Drew's issues that we are currently facing is his tendency to use the word "Sorry" as a get out of jail free card. Almost any poor behavior, bad word, accident, or whatever, if he gets called on it, he just says his stock "sorrrrrrrry" and acts as if that clears the issue. We've taught him to apologize if he does something inappropriate, but DAMN. And if we continue on, he'll sometimes say, "But I said sorry!" and act wounded like we've crossed some sort of hideous boundary. Alert the media, we're mentally abusing our child!
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:26 PM   #30
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Frogman - out therapist told us that children don't really learn right from wrong as a concept until they are around 11 or 12, if that helps.

Qwikshot - I really feel for you, man. Hopefully you can keep things on a good footing with your ex, because as you say, all decisions affect your daughter first.
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:41 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sachmo71
Frogman - out therapist told us that children don't really learn right from wrong as a concept until they are around 11 or 12, if that helps.

you know, I read what you wrote and thought to myself "nah, that's too old, he had to know it wasn't right", then I stopped and thought about the scene on Friday when Andrew told me he'd lied to me, about what he had written in his letter. I do believe he simply didn't want to disappoint us, that he knew it would make us happy to hear him tell us he was doing well, and it was/still is making us happy to hear him do well.

Maybe you're right sachmo, thanks for putting it in perspective... Live and let live I guess...

Qwikshot, I've known about your situation for a little while now, as you've brushed the subject a couple of times in the HT forum I think, but man, I feel for you. Not much I can tell you but that I hope everything turns out for the best. I know that if one day I get split from my sons, it'll rip my heart out. I'm crying as I type this, to let you know how much I feel for your situation... Best of luck dude, hang in there...

FM
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:41 PM   #32
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Man, Oliegirl and I are pretty lucky. We both realize it, but 99% of the time we have a damn good kid. Healthy, smart, and generally well behaved. I honestly have not ever had the fear/worry/guilt that I am a bad parent, but I'm coming from a drastically different situation, since I didn't come into Anthony's life until he was already 5. I wonder how that will be different when we have another that is biologically mine and that I help raise from day 1.

Frogman, on the lying thing, it could be worse. I remember having a natural instinct to try to get out of trouble by any means necessary, and my son does too. Pretty sure my wife does as well for that matter, even if it means telling a fairly obvious bold faced lie.

Last year, and keep in mind this was in the *1st grade* we had a little incident with Anthony taking an attempt to avoid trouble quite a long ways. He had some bad behavior mentioned on a weekly report from his teacher, probably for talking in class too much, after having had a rough few days and being scolded and reminded to be on his best behavior, etc. So he is supposed to get this report signed by his parents. We never see it, until a week goes by and Oliegirl is in his classroom and goes in his desk to get something and finds it.

Apparently, he told his teacher he gave it to us and we hadn't signed it yet. He told us that his teacher didn't hand out the report to get signed(she didn't always have weekly reports for us so this was believable). He signed his mother's name on and put it in his desk. When I say "signed his mother's name" I mean that he wrote her first name in big giant 1st grade print, in pencil. Her first name was misspelled. No last name. We asked him what he thought would happen when his teacher asked for it, and he said that he thought she would just take the note, see his mom's name on it, and everything would be fine.



We continue to catch him on occasion telling incredibly stupid lies because he's afraid he's done something to get into trouble. Often its over simple stuff that we wouldn't even care about but that he thinks he'll get in trouble for. We have to continually impress upon him that the consequences of lying are *always* worse than coming clean in the first place, no matter what you've done wrong.
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:46 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WSUCougar
One of Drew's issues that we are currently facing is his tendency to use the word "Sorry" as a get out of jail free card. Almost any poor behavior, bad word, accident, or whatever, if he gets called on it, he just says his stock "sorrrrrrrry" and acts as if that clears the issue. We've taught him to apologize if he does something inappropriate, but DAMN. And if we continue on, he'll sometimes say, "But I said sorry!" and act wounded like we've crossed some sort of hideous boundary. Alert the media, we're mentally abusing our child!

Avery, my 5 year old, uses the "It was an accident" excuse now that we told him that sorry doesn't hack it, when you do something that you have meant to do, and it gets you in trouble.
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:46 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WSUCougar
One of Drew's issues that we are currently facing is his tendency to use the word "Sorry" as a get out of jail free card. Almost any poor behavior, bad word, accident, or whatever, if he gets called on it, he just says his stock "sorrrrrrrry" and acts as if that clears the issue. We've taught him to apologize if he does something inappropriate, but DAMN. And if we continue on, he'll sometimes say, "But I said sorry!" and act wounded like we've crossed some sort of hideous boundary. Alert the media, we're mentally abusing our child!

The word "sorry" is also one he uses very often. For simple things like letting out one big burp at the table. I mean, it's one thing to let a big one go at home, with only the four of us around the table, but saying you are sorry when you rip a big one in the middle of a karate class will still put you in trouble with the teacher. (it has happened in the past, from now on, no hot-dogs before karate )

But then there are more important things, like throwing a toy in the air and having it fall very close to his small brother's head. You look at him, ask him what went through his mind when he thought it'd be a good idea to throw said toy (say as big as a truck) and he'll go "I'm sorry"... sigh...

FM
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Old 10-12-2005, 01:52 PM   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Radii
Frogman, on the lying thing, it could be worse. I remember having a natural instinct to try to get out of trouble by any means necessary, and my son does too. Pretty sure my wife does as well for that matter, even if it means telling a fairly obvious bold faced lie.

I agree, it could be quite worse and Andrew isn't really the worst of it kids, I guess it caught us off guard. Seeing myself as possibly the worst parent in the world is probably also part of my own personality, as I'm very critical of myself, in everything I do.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Radii
We continue to catch him on occasion telling incredibly stupid lies because he's afraid he's done something to get into trouble. Often its over simple stuff that we wouldn't even care about but that he thinks he'll get in trouble for. We have to continually impress upon him that the consequences of lying are *always* worse than coming clean in the first place, no matter what you've done wrong.

That's the thing, this one was the first big one we caught him into. What I bolded is exactly the way we are going about it from now on...

FM
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Old 10-12-2005, 05:14 PM   #36
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I hate this computer. I’ve spent nearly an hour restarting this thing every time it freezes.

Anyway, wow…. I’ve got a couple of comments to make and a way-too-long vent session, so bear with me.

Quikshot: I cannot imagine what you are going through. If something were to happen that I had to be away from my daughter, I don’t know what I’d do. To say the least, I would be lost. You sound like you are trying to do what is right by your daughter. Hang in there. (sorry, tears welling up.)

Pilotman: For what it is worth, I was homeschooled, so if there is any way I can help, let me know. Also, I understand some about the flight industry (my dad was a test pilot). It isn’t always the easiest community in which to work.

In my first post, I just wanted to introduce myself. After reading what some of y’all have written, my issues seem like nothing. They still worry me, though:

I guess the number one thing that has been on my mind is the grandparents. Lucy has three grandparents: Tony’s parents and my mom. This is the first grandchild and great-grandchild on both sides. We live about 2.5 hours from where they do, which is either too close or too far. It’s too close in that we are expected to drive up to see them. It is too far in that to go means spending at least one night.

There was always a lot of stress when I was growing up, but all that changed a couple of years ago when my dad was killed, and Tony and I got married. As the two events were not that far apart, my mom’s home life really changed (I was an only child, so she’s on her own for the first time in 30 years). As a result, she went from being controlling to not wanting to interfere with the way we are raising Lucy at all. It seems like she is walking on eggshells all of the time. As she sees it, we have our family, we need our privacy, etc. Which is not necessarily bad, but…

Tony’s parents *really* wanted grandchildren. I can’t stress this enough. So much so that it seems as if they see Lucy as theirs and not ours. That may seem awfully harsh, but it is the way it comes across to me. I admit that I am a sensitive person, but man, having a baby obviously really changed me. I went from mostly easy-going to uber-protective. It is these little comments that get me. First, I was not feeding Lucy enough (our pediatrician was thrilled with her progress). Then, Lucy was being held by Tony and I too much (as opposed to other people [them]). We weren’t bringing her up to see them enough. Lucy is never going to learn their language. (Tony’s background and mine are pretty different. His mom is from a different country, and at home, his family often speaks that language. I am really not good at speaking it, so I don’t. We have always known that Tony would teach her.) You get the drift. Meanwhile, my mom doesn’t even want to hold Lucy if that is going to bother us or Lucy (as she is easily overstimulated and pretty high-strung, and even someone else holding her can be too much for her to handle).

All of this seems like such little stuff, but when this happens every time we are up there - ugh. Last time, she was having a very difficult time sleeping, so she would start crying when she got tired. Lucy was then labeled “touchy” and given to her grandma to be settled down. I guess I’m just around to feed her and change her. I’m just her mom and I obviously don't know what I'm doing or she'd be quiet. I end up a nervous wreck when we go to their house and looking for the earliest opportunity to ease out of the room. These are Tony’s parents, for goodness sake!

Tony knows all of this, and we’ve spoken on it and are in agreement that we know what is best for Lucy and we will do the best we can. As I said, it might just be that I have gone way too sensitive as I am having such a hard time letting things slide.

Is the grandparent thing ever going to get easier? Does it help when the “new” wears off or with subsequent kids? Do I just move to a different state? I know I can’t be alone here.

This got way too long, but I feel somewhat better getting this out. Thanks guys!
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Old 10-12-2005, 05:36 PM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ibnsgirl
I hate this computer. I’ve spent nearly an hour restarting this thing every time it freezes.

Anyway, wow…. I’ve got a couple of comments to make and a way-too-long vent session, so bear with me.

Quikshot: I cannot imagine what you are going through. If something were to happen that I had to be away from my daughter, I don’t know what I’d do. To say the least, I would be lost. You sound like you are trying to do what is right by your daughter. Hang in there. (sorry, tears welling up.)

Pilotman: For what it is worth, I was homeschooled, so if there is any way I can help, let me know. Also, I understand some about the flight industry (my dad was a test pilot). It isn’t always the easiest community in which to work.

In my first post, I just wanted to introduce myself. After reading what some of y’all have written, my issues seem like nothing. They still worry me, though:

I guess the number one thing that has been on my mind is the grandparents. Lucy has three grandparents: Tony’s parents and my mom. This is the first grandchild and great-grandchild on both sides. We live about 2.5 hours from where they do, which is either too close or too far. It’s too close in that we are expected to drive up to see them. It is too far in that to go means spending at least one night.

There was always a lot of stress when I was growing up, but all that changed a couple of years ago when my dad was killed, and Tony and I got married. As the two events were not that far apart, my mom’s home life really changed (I was an only child, so she’s on her own for the first time in 30 years). As a result, she went from being controlling to not wanting to interfere with the way we are raising Lucy at all. It seems like she is walking on eggshells all of the time. As she sees it, we have our family, we need our privacy, etc. Which is not necessarily bad, but…

Tony’s parents *really* wanted grandchildren. I can’t stress this enough. So much so that it seems as if they see Lucy as theirs and not ours. That may seem awfully harsh, but it is the way it comes across to me. I admit that I am a sensitive person, but man, having a baby obviously really changed me. I went from mostly easy-going to uber-protective. It is these little comments that get me. First, I was not feeding Lucy enough (our pediatrician was thrilled with her progress). Then, Lucy was being held by Tony and I too much (as opposed to other people [them]). We weren’t bringing her up to see them enough. Lucy is never going to learn their language. (Tony’s background and mine are pretty different. His mom is from a different country, and at home, his family often speaks that language. I am really not good at speaking it, so I don’t. We have always known that Tony would teach her.) You get the drift. Meanwhile, my mom doesn’t even want to hold Lucy if that is going to bother us or Lucy (as she is easily overstimulated and pretty high-strung, and even someone else holding her can be too much for her to handle).

All of this seems like such little stuff, but when this happens every time we are up there - ugh. Last time, she was having a very difficult time sleeping, so she would start crying when she got tired. Lucy was then labeled “touchy” and given to her grandma to be settled down. I guess I’m just around to feed her and change her. I’m just her mom and I obviously don't know what I'm doing or she'd be quiet. I end up a nervous wreck when we go to their house and looking for the earliest opportunity to ease out of the room. These are Tony’s parents, for goodness sake!

Tony knows all of this, and we’ve spoken on it and are in agreement that we know what is best for Lucy and we will do the best we can. As I said, it might just be that I have gone way too sensitive as I am having such a hard time letting things slide.

Is the grandparent thing ever going to get easier? Does it help when the “new” wears off or with subsequent kids? Do I just move to a different state? I know I can’t be alone here.

This got way too long, but I feel somewhat better getting this out. Thanks guys!


I like quoting the entire thing and then responding in small responses....

Honestly,

This is the way it was and has been with my wifes family. They feel they should be able to tell us how to raise the kids, and they stepped back when I told them, these are our children, Dennis and Emilie's not yours, you can voice your opinion once, we will note it, and then we will move on. Thats the best advice I can give you, and it is hard, especially when emotions are involved. Our baby boy (Born a month and a half after yours) has been a blessing, both families have left us to deal with it as seen fit and not tossed their hands into it.

Our problem person in the family now has moved beyond the Grandparents to the Aunt...My wifes sister lives an alternate lifestyle but wants kids, she has basically assumed that my daughter (First grandchild born on both sides) is hers, and she treats her like hers. We just recently found out that she has introduced our daughter as hers to people when they have been out together. This caused me to hit the roof, pick up the phone, and prepare a major chewing session, my wife calmed me down and told me no. She handled it on her own. I do not know what was said, but I received an apology from the sister.
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Old 10-12-2005, 10:13 PM   #38
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This caused me to hit the roof, pick up the phone, and prepare a major chewing session, my wife calmed me down and told me no. She handled it on her own. I do not know what was said, but I received an apology from the sister.


I've learned that one as well. Bite thy tongue and let cooler heads prevail. It usually get's better results.

ibnsgirl, I've been through a lot of the stuff you are going through with my MIL. They live about an hour and a half south, and so it's the "not a big deal but a hassle" to go see them for the day. The MIL is very much into spoiling the kids, and I now let that pretty much go, because a number of other things have happened and I'm still trying to figure out how to have a normal relationship with them. But the one thing that has helped me with her is honest talk. She seems to read me and my concerns, and goes out of her way to accomidate me. That doesn't work with everyone, though, so take that with a grain of salt. I hope things relax a bit as your daughter get's older, which obviously they will, but to what extent you can't be sure.
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Old 10-13-2005, 12:03 AM   #39
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Frogman - out therapist told us that children don't really learn right from wrong as a concept until they are around 11 or 12, if that helps.


That is sort of correct, but not completely so. Kids don't learn abstract thinking until 11 or 12 and that is when one's moral system is really developing. However, they can tell right from wrong by about age 8 (give or take a year depending on the child.) Kids that are 8 should be able to start understanding rules, and actually tend to "over-follow" rules sometimes.

That being said, what happened with your child isn't that uncommon Frogman and it doesn't make you a bad parent. However, I would encourage you to continue to work on teaching your kid to follow the rules and to help him distinguish right from wrong. From what you told me, I think you handled the situation very well.
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Old 10-13-2005, 02:04 AM   #40
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Great thread...A young college buck myself, I am still on the highway drivin' 55 before exiting for children (but someday). It's amazing to see all the growth and development of children to where we are today. Looks like you should never underestimate your children's mind from these posts.
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Old 10-13-2005, 03:40 AM   #41
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I've been reading and keeping up so thought I should finally post.
I'm Tony, and I'm married to ibnsgirl. We've been married 14 months, and we have a 3 month old (Lucy).

To Qwikshot - my heart and prayers go out to you. I've only had my little one for 3 months, and I know I can't be without her.

As for me, the thing with my parents is mostly my mom. She grew up in a large family, and (imo) regrets not having a big family of her own.
She'd been trying to marry off since I turned 17. Needless to say how much she wanted a grandchild.
She's thinking that I am going to neglect my heritage/background as far as teaching it to Lucy as she grows.
I've already told her once that Lucy was my wife's and mine not hers. It's like she doesn't get it sometimes...oh well, I'll fix it soon enough.

Lee's done the noble thing of being a stay-at-home mom. I could never really tell or show her how much I appreciate that.

The big issues on my mind involve my work. For those that do not know, I'm a Border Patrol Agent stationed in Laredo, Texas.
Laredo is (imo) one of the worst place to raise a family. The city ranks dead last (of the "major" cities) in literacy and education, customer service is non-existant, and there is no "safe" neighborhood anywhere in town.

We get no respect in this town what-so-ever. The laws we enforce are a joke to everybody. We send people to court for smuggling people or drugs, and the worst most people get is probation. The community knows it, and it is very frustraing for me because it makes me feel that doing my job is worthless. I've taken countless criminals off the streets (child molesters, murderers, sex offenders, narcotics trafficers, etc) but most usually end up getting sent back to their country of origion to try and re-enter another day.

I like my job, but I work 50+ hours a week. Lately I've been pulling 11-12 hour days. That in itself is not bad, but I rotate shifts every 4 weeks. That's 4 weeks of days, 4 weeks of evenings, then 4 weeks of mids and start cycle again. To top things off, I never have set days off that are consistant. This week it's two days, next week 2 different days, next week, 2 more different days, etc. I'm afraid that spending all this time at work is making me miss all the things that Lucy is going through. All the little milestones.

I've been trying anything and everything to get out of this place to another federal job. I've spent 4 very hard years with BP. It's a very good job and it's treated me well enough so far, but ever since I found out I was going to be a dad I've been trying to put my family first and get us out of here (No luck so far).

I've been encouraged by several current supervisors that I should put in for supervisor and that I would do a good job at it. I would love the opportunity of promotion, but I would've liked it to be somewhere nicer where I can raise my family. It just seems that more likely you have to be a supervisor to be considered for any type of transfer. Not to mention being a supervisor adds at least another hour and a half to your workday.

Moral at my station is in the pits. It's been said that out of 400 or so agents that work there, over 330 have put in for other jobs. Yet nothing has been done to try and improve moral. The service itself is more focused on recruiting over retention and veiws us all as replaceable.

I'm just trying to be a good provider as well as trying to make sure I raise my family in a healthy environment and I know it will not happen where I am at now.

In anycase, thanks for the thread and for listening.
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Old 10-13-2005, 10:54 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by ibnsgirl
Anyway, wow…. I’ve got a couple of comments to make and a way-too-long vent session, so bear with me.
Wow! Everything you wrote was exactly how I fear my/our families will be. My wife's parents are divorced and we only really see her mom on a regular basis. Meanwhile my parents live 90 minutes away and are both Portuguese and want to make sure my son speaks Portuguese (even though I don't speak it well). I fear that they will be very much on top of us and it will really piss off my wife.
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Old 10-13-2005, 02:51 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Eaglesfan27
That is sort of correct, but not completely so. Kids don't learn abstract thinking until 11 or 12 and that is when one's moral system is really developing. However, they can tell right from wrong by about age 8 (give or take a year depending on the child.) Kids that are 8 should be able to start understanding rules, and actually tend to "over-follow" rules sometimes.

That being said, what happened with your child isn't that uncommon Frogman and it doesn't make you a bad parent. However, I would encourage you to continue to work on teaching your kid to follow the rules and to help him distinguish right from wrong. From what you told me, I think you handled the situation very well.

Thanks doc, good insight. I'm not so sure about him "over-following" rules though Not that he'd regularly try to find ways around said rules, but he can have a very a very short memory as to what rules exist at times

Teaching Andrew to follow these rules and remind him of said rules is indeed what we try to do whenever something like that happens.

Thanks again.

FM
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Old 10-13-2005, 03:22 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eaglesfan27
That is sort of correct, but not completely so. Kids don't learn abstract thinking until 11 or 12 and that is when one's moral system is really developing. However, they can tell right from wrong by about age 8 (give or take a year depending on the child.) Kids that are 8 should be able to start understanding rules, and actually tend to "over-follow" rules sometimes.

The belief that children start to distinguish right from wrong about the age of seven or eight is based on the work of Piaget and Kohlberg, which is what most of us have been taught in college and high school.

It is critical to note that there is a lot of good, current research that calls into question many of the conclusions drawn by these researchers. Newer research indicates that children often much younger--even as young as three--can distinguish to a surprisingly degree of complexity the difference between right and wrong actions.

A lot of this arises from the realization that often children at very young ages can view an incident from another person's perspective. In short--much earlier than Piaget believed possible--many children are able to empathize.
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Old 10-13-2005, 05:14 PM   #45
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My wife and I always try and keep a runnning track of things that we have had to tell our kids, that are things that you should not ever have to tell your kids. Some of these are pretty funny.

- Don't bite the dog.
- Don't lick the dog.
- Don't stick chopsticks in your (eye, ear, nose).
- Your choo-choo's should never be hauling poop.
- Don't stand on your brothers head.
- Don't bite your brother.
- Don't throw dog poop at your brother.
- Don't stand on the dog.
- Don't touch the dog's butt.
- Don't let the dog kiss you after she licks her butt.
- Don't eat dirt.
- Don't put dirt/sand in your brothers hair.
- For the second day in a row, do not put a bean up your nose.
- Don't eat the dog's food.
- Don't drink out of the dog's bowl.

There are more than this, I will need to post them as I remember them.
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Old 10-14-2005, 12:16 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by Godzilla Blitz
The belief that children start to distinguish right from wrong about the age of seven or eight is based on the work of Piaget and Kohlberg, which is what most of us have been taught in college and high school.

It is critical to note that there is a lot of good, current research that calls into question many of the conclusions drawn by these researchers. Newer research indicates that children often much younger--even as young as three--can distinguish to a surprisingly degree of complexity the difference between right and wrong actions.

A lot of this arises from the realization that often children at very young ages can view an incident from another person's perspective. In short--much earlier than Piaget believed possible--many children are able to empathize.

Spot on. I'm a fan of Jean Piaget (and to a lesser extent Kohlberg), but I also like and in my own mind agree with the newer research that is being done. However, when I'm teaching I'll usually teach the older stuff such as Piaget because it is usually the right answer on board examinations and such. In reality, I think there is also a great deal of variability between children.
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Old 10-14-2005, 07:03 AM   #47
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When Zia does wrong, she doesn't outright lie when she's with me, she will try to justify it. But when say I am watching a show while Zia is playing with my brother, and she comes back into the room, if is something we can both watch, I will allow it, but if it isn't, I will switch it off, and Zia understands that it isn't "appropriate". She understands that word, because I have used it for Family Guy, South Park, and other shows.

Of course, my ex lets her watch "Buffy".

Still I was watching bits of "Cold Case" and Zia wanted to watch, and it was rather dark, (a woman is trapped in a burning house with grills on the windows). Zia wanted to see it, so I decided to use it to my advantage in explaining the dangers of fire, and what you need to do in case of a fire. We had had a real life experience with fire when she was younger (she remembers amazingly) when my ex had a grease fire occur, and we had to use an extinguisher to put it out.

What I do try to instill is fairness. Zia will lie over the phone, but it is hard to guage if she understands so. Sometimes I think she just wants attention which I may lavish on her, being a single guy, when I have Zia, it's just me and her (sometimes my parents and brother)...when Zia is with Craig and Zoe, Zia is not the center of attention...so I get messages (she calls everyday) that she hasn't eaten, or that her friends hit her, or that they refuse to give her milk, or that she hasn't done anything all day.

So either Zia knows how to manipulate, or there are half-truths floating around. I think mainly it's because of attention...I have noticed that she does get jealous if she's not the center of attention, and she has a one track mind when it comes to getting attention, if she sees me I trump my parents, my brother, etc...she used to barely acknowledge them...more and more though I have told her, shown her, that you can share and allow everyone acknowledgement and attention...

I don't know where I'm going with this, I ramble.

I think children don't lie so much as they make their own perception, they may understand that it is wrong, but feel that there is justification (I get the cookie, I get the attention). I don't punish when I catch Zia in a lie as much as I make her accept the truth.
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Old 10-14-2005, 09:24 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by Qwikshot
I don't know where I'm going with this, I ramble.
No worries...that's the point of the thread.

Soccer tomorrow morning is going to be interesting. My wife has some other stuff to do and won't be attending. Drew tends to be more willing to do "new" stuff if mom isn't right there to cling to. Keep your fingers crossed for me.
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Old 10-14-2005, 09:42 AM   #49
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No worries...that's the point of the thread.

Was gonna post something eerily similar to that

Quote:
Originally Posted by WSUCougar

Soccer tomorrow morning is going to be interesting. My wife has some other stuff to do and won't be attending. Drew tends to be more willing to do "new" stuff if mom isn't right there to cling to. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

That is a good situationg there. When Andrew started doing karate when he was 4, no parents were allowed to watch the class, except once a month. You know what, most teachers have told me that these once a month invite to parents were the toughest on the kids as they are more often than not too focused on their parents and they tend to forget about doing whatever karate they knew.

Good luck with it though...
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Old 10-14-2005, 10:10 AM   #50
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One of the biggest problems that I face is where to draw the line between being a parent with a lot of influence in my children's lives and where to be the bread winner and be responsible for our quality of life. My job is unique in that I am not home every day. In fact, I can be gone for days at a time and home again for days at a time. Sometimes, the transition between daddy being home and gone is difficult. My family gets into routines that I screw up by being home, and that is a source for friction.

We live in very fragile financial state. The investment to do what I do was very costly. Not only in terms of lost wages by being a student for 13mo, but also making next to nothing for 2 yrs. Look at it this way, my wife worked a part time job while I worked 2 jobs. In the end, she still made more money than I did. The cost of my training, coupled with the CC debt and money borrowed from family members has put us in a large hole. Think 6 figures plus. About 80% of the debt is off the books, as it is money that I owe my parents, and money that is not in my name. But it is still money owed. Of course, at the time the aviation industry was in a good state, and the expected return on investment was very good compared to comparable industries. Not so much now.

Kids go through this very important development stage up to the age of 3, where they are developing the personality, and mindset that will set the stage for how they develop the rest of thier lives. Cole's three and under years were hard, and it is plain to see the impact that it had on him, and how it affects him today. Basically, his Mom worked up to 3 jobs at a time, and he stayed home with his deadbeat grandma. This was like being on his own essentially, as she didn't pay a whole lot of attention to him.

Anyway, back to the point, my wife and I share the opinion that our family is more important than being financially secure. I need to be home as much as my job will allow, so that I can be the leader, father, and have the impact on my kids lives that I missed out upon as my parents divorced when I was two. Yet, I am the bread winner, it is my problem if we can't pay the bills. It is my problem if our house/duplex is too small for our family. It is my problem if there isn't enough money send our kids to any extra activities, like soccer, instrument lessons, karate, etc.

I feel totally handcuffed. I have held the road that my family is #1, and I try and stay home as much as I can, but I feel horrible when we can't afford to do things, and we struggle on our tight budget every month.

Now, with the company in bankruptcy, there are going to be layoffs (furlough's) as well as a pay cut. I don't make a whole lot, my base is around 36k, but I should make around 50k this year. The pay cut is going to be in the neighborhood of 10-13%. That is going to be significant to us. I still have to feed 5 people. I still have to pay the bills, and and the credit cards that got us through training.

So now there is no light at the end of the tunnel. Our lives are stuck here in limbo, when we though we would be getting free of some of it, we are mired in a bog that won't let us go. We are so tired of just getting by. Tired, of going paycheck to paychek. Tired of never seeing or feeling like we are making any progress. And I am tired of feeling like a failure and that I have let my family down, or lead them down the wrong path. A failure that I have family members holding promissory notes and not able to pay them any money. I am squeezed by the fact that I have to be committed to this career, that I cannot work for a smaller airline, as I couldn't handle the paycut. The other option is to leave the career alltoghether and go back to restaurant management, or something else where I could start off making the same amount of money right away. Right now, I can't see doing that either, because of all the time that it took just to get here, to a job that I really like.

I am leaving on a trip today, I guess I am feeling it.

Thanks for listening.
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