What About My Son?

It’s been an eventful bunch of months. I adjusted to working outside the home, weathered motherhood, and had countless moments of self reflection. Blah blah blah, I lived. I got wrapped up in it. This is just the obligatory explanation that I feel compelled to make after not blogging for so long.

I (we) also moved across town into my childhood home. There was a lot of drama around it but it ended up with us in a pretty darn good situation. And, for the first time in a very long time, I feel equipped (or more equipped) to handle this crazy little thing called life….

Anyway, there’s my little recap. What I really want to talk about is William.

William has come a long way. William and I have come a long way. But, like life with teenagers, there will always be challenges. (And I know that William feels the same but opposite way…life with moms are challenging.)

So, the kids’ school does a lot of award ceremonies. One a quarter to be exact. Some might say that’s excessive. I know I did. But, I also respect the intention behind it of trying to keep the kids feeling enthused, motivated, and supported.
I missed the first one because of work so when the next one came around, I was ready to reluctantly attend. I emphasize the reluctance because I asked the school if my three would be getting any awards (because I was fully prepared to bail if not). I was told that they try to make sure that each student gets one.

Now that might be an example of how kids today become entitled but for my purposes, it was just confirmation that we had to attend. So Brian and I put our big kid pants on and showed up. I was so glad we did because the pride on their faces when they got the awards made it worth it.

kidawards

I left feeling so proud of those three. So when the next one came around, I recognized the importance of going. The kids did, too, but, on the way, one of the two younger ones was a little less inspired (and a little more tired). They asked what the point in going was. And William, of all people, said that they do the award ceremonies to build confidence. Well, I thought that was pretty cool.

So, we went. They started with the younger kids first. Lizzie got an award for reading and her straight A’s. Antwan got one for science and something else that I wish I could remember right now.

Then it was time for William’s class. His teacher went through his list and I watched everyone get called up except for William. I sat there, stunned. Then his math teacher did his awards and made no mention of William, either.

I sat there, fuming. (And feverishly texting a friend to determine if I was overreacting or not. Ha!) Now, I am painfully aware that William’s grades…well, they suck, So, I understood that he hadn’t earned anything for his grades. But, my take was that you can’t have it both ways. If they were going to try to make sure all the students got an award, then they sure better include my kid.

As I sat there, I was flashing back on what he said about the awards building confidence. I was wondering if this was going to lead to a fall-out in the days to come as he dwelled on it. And when he came up to me after, he had a tone. It’s a tone that I believe is indicative of bad things to come. Although, to be fair, I could have just been reading it that way.

Either way, I handed him the keys so he could go to the car and then I marched my little, afraid of confrontation self to the principal’s office. (Fyi, the principal is also his math teacher.)

I mentioned to him that William was the only one who hadn’t gotten an award. I said that I understood that he didn’t earn one academically but I was concerned with the fact that everyone else got one. When I told him what William had said about the awards building confidence, that struck a chord with him.

He said that he didn’t want to damage William’s confidence and started to think out loud about the fact that he had given another student a “most improved” award and since William had also made up a lot of work recently, he had also improved. Next thing I knew, he was filling out a certificate.
Through the whole interaction, I was worried that I was a part of the problem and just being a helicopter mom. But, I was all in, anyway.
He then went to our car and presented William with the award.

He said – Your mom was talking to me and I realized that you had been working hard, etc, etc..

He gave him the award, William thanked him, he closed our car door and then he got ambushed with a teary-eyed hug from this helicopter mom. haha.

And, ever since that moment, William and I have gotten along great.
Initially, I cringed at the idea of William knowing that I basically went and complained my way into him getting an award. But, I think, inadvertently, I couldn’t have planned it better. He knows now that I have his back and I know that he hasn’t felt like I do. If the angry jabs that he has thrown my way, in the past, are to be believed. 😉 So I like to think that this meant something to him. Or maybe he’s just been nicer to me because he’s just been in a good mood, but I’ll take it, anyway.

Maybe just as importantly, I learned that I do have his back. I can’t say for sure if I would have bothered a handful of months ago, but I hope so. Sometimes, in the midst of the drama with him, it’s been easy for me to lose sight of the fact that I really love that kid.

And, it’s easy for me to lose confidence in the idea that he loves me.

But, a few days after, as they were getting out of the car, I said “I love you.” I had actually made a mental note to say it out loud, to make sure they heard it. Well, first, William made some smart response. Then he stopped, smiled, and said “You know I love you.” He was right, I did know. But I didn’t know, until that moment, how much I really needed to hear that.

So, yeah, maybe I contributed to the problem. Maybe I taught William a bad lesson. Maybe if I had backed off, he would have tried harder next quarter to earn an award on his own.

Maybe.

But, maybe I don’t care.

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No Secret Sisters For Me!

So, recently, a friend posted a Secret Sister invite on her facebook page. Like many others, I was enticed by the idea of 6-36 presents. I’m not gonna lie, I am pro-present. I absolutely love getting presents. Now to be fair, I also love giving presents so it’s not that I’m selfish or anything like that. I just dig presents, all around.  Anyway, in previous years, I haven’t participated because I was afraid that I couldn’t be trusted to go through the whole process of buying a gift, buying a box and going to the post office. You see, I’m pro-presents but I’m not pro-hassle. But, as it points out in the post, it’s a “Hello, amazon!” society now. I realized that I could definitely commit to sitting in my recliner and clicking “proceed to checkout.” So, I commented “I’m in!”

Of course, I soon found out that I was obligated to re-post the invite on my page. So, I did. But, not before getting my 10 year old daughter on board. I planned to post one on my behalf and one on her behalf. Then I would help her pick a gift for her secret sister and enjoy watching her get gifts, too. That’s something that I also am in favor of, seeing Lizzie happy. But, once I reposted, this positive diversion in a sea of negativity became just another negative.
Because everyone said it was a scam.
When I saw my notifications after I re-posted, I was excited to see all of my future “secret sisters,” but instead I got one person who wanted to play along and a few others warning me that it was a scam. While I was truly appreciative that my friends had my back, I was disappointed. And after reading the article that one person shared, I still wasn’t particularly swayed. I wasn’t worried about identity theft since I was only giving out my address. Anyone could find that out, honestly. And, my friend who posted the secret sister invite assured me that her friend (the original poster for this particular exchange) does it every year and it always goes well.
Determined, I scammed on because I wasn’t going to leave my own Secret Sister hanging. She was waiting for her gift and a gift she would get! Plus, I had my one friend/cousin who still wanted to play along! Well, at least, until she re-posted and got all the warnings from her friends, too. Ha, figures. 
So, my concerned friends have guaranteed that I won’t receive any of the promised presents because it stops with me and my name will never be added to the list. It’s not really that big of a deal, just a bit of a bummer. Not the lack of a present, necessarily, just the lack of fun. Well, maybe a little bit the lack of present. haha. Not long after, I mentioned to my friend, who originally got me going on this secret sister almost adventure, that if I did get a present, I was just gonna give it to my daughter because I didn’t want her disappointed. And, guess who magically got a secret sister present just a couple days later??  Yep, even though, her name was never officially on any list, Lizzie got a gift!  And, then the next day and the day after that!
The Secret Sister gift exchange may be a scary chain letter, pyramid scheme to some, but to my daughter, it was an unexpected pack of socks “all with cats on them!” (“How did she know that I like cats??”). And it was a cat coloring book. And it was a ridiculously cute Fingerling toy.

So, I call it a success. 🙂

Thank you, Lizzie’s secret sister, otherwise known as Jessica, and your sister helpers, you made her week!

And, please, I beg you, no more links of articles or ominous warnings. I’m not going to be arrested for re-posting a chain letter or lose my identity because my church friend’s mutual friend knows my address. And true, I’m not going to get any gifts (so thanks for that, haha). But, I am going to go look for another happy diversion and borrow my sweet girl’s socks when she’s not looking. 😉

*Disclaimer: My blase’ take on this would not be quite so blase’ if some random person who I don’t know wanted me to send a stranger a present. That might be weird…

*Second disclaimer: Don’t stop looking out for me, friends of mine. There’s no telling what I’ll get myself involved in next week! 😉

Getting What You Want And Not Wanting It.

I want to be happy. I want to feel fulfilled. I want to figure out what my passion is and follow it.

But, I’m not. And, I haven’t (yet).

A couple of months ago, I started working. It’s not because I wanted to. It’s not because I thought I needed time away from my kids. But, I wanted to contribute financially. I wanted to help us pay off our debt so we can finally buy a house. Brian works his butt off but there are six of us. That’s a lot of us’es! So, I interviewed for a few things and when I interviewed to be a supported living coach, a position that I had held and loved before the kids, it seemed meant to be.

Before I go on, let me explain what the heck that is! A supported living coach assists adults with disabilities with living independently. That could mean taking them grocery shopping, explaining mail, helping with doctor appointments or anything that is part of life. Sometimes it even means going to movies.

Anyway, as I talked to my future boss, I remembered why I loved the field. I liked her immediately and loved the fact that she brings her dog to work. I left feeling really good.

It wasn’t long before I got the call back but here’s the twist, she wanted me for a different position. She basically wanted to create a new position. She wanted me to coach a couple people, but also work on quality assurance and oversee their new transportation department. She said she needed a right hand person. Talk about an ego boost! I was pretty excited and digging the fact that I wouldn’t be driving around all day, every day.

So, I got ready to start my job. As they trained me in all kinds of interesting managerial stuff, I realized how much I liked talking to grown-ups. I was exhausted but felt intellectually stimulated. I felt so….relevant. I hadn’t realized how much I needed it. All three kids were in school, I was succeeding at work, and we were slowly but surely, getting better financially. It wasn’t perfect but it was close. And then one of the coaches quit.

And then my boss needed someone to cover those people. And I was blindsided with basically a demotion. Now, that wasn’t how it was meant. She just had a list of people needing services and it was more crucial than my new hybrid position. I’m sure she didn’t think it was going to bother me since I had originally interviewed for that position. But, the thing is I was happy. I had found something that I didn’t realize I needed. And, I was going to lose it.

So, suddenly, I found myself out in the field full-time with no reason to go to the office and talk to the people that I had bonded with. If I had to stop by for whatever reason, I would find myself interrupting their meetings instead of attending them. I felt like I had been kicked out a club. Yeah, I know, my reaction might be an over-reaction. But, what are you gonna do? It’s my reaction.

Anyway, I had to get over it (or pretend to) and remind myself that it’s a job. And, there are a lot of perks to making your own schedule and working with very little supervision. I don’t have to elaborate there. 🙂   But, I’ve also discovered that it’s not the same. Being in charge of 8 people’s quality of life is way more emotionally exhausting when you have to then go home and be there for your children. And, in general, their patience is on level with my own children so….

So, here I am. I’m driving around town, wearing myself out, and being constantly reminded that my back doesn’t like being in a car all day. I’m in a constant battle with myself and my id. I don’t want to waste my life doing something that I don’t love but I also don’t want to waste my days constantly struggling. So, I’m trying to hang in there.

It really isn’t horrible. I don’t want to make it sound that way. I still love my boss who I never get to see and the office dog that used to hang out by me while I typed.

I enjoy working with this population and I love that I can stop in the middle of the day, take a long lunch, type this blog post, and no one cares. But, this break is also brought to me by one of my guys who bailed on me and I don’t have time to squeeze in anyone else before picking up the kiddos from early release. Either way, I’m enjoying my KFC because I will be scrambling to get the required hours with him later.

They say that if you do something that you love, you won’t work a day in your life. I can’t relate, at this point. But,  until I get paid to tell everyone what I think of my new job, in great, dramatic detail; I guess I’m stuck with working many days in my life. But, I’ll try to remember to appreciate those good moments. I’ll try to accept things I can’t change and look at this job as an opportunity to change what I can. And, not to state the obvious, but I get to do something that really matters for some people who really matter, in the meantime. 🙂

Do I Love My Kids Enough To Let Them Go?

I always loved watching those shows where people reconnect with their birth families. It’s so amazing to see it when families are back together. But, then I adopted kids. I don’t know if I could be like those moms on tv. I don’t know if I could give my blessing. Well, I don’t know if I could give my blessing and mean it.

As amazing as adoption is and as glad I am that we went this route, you give up a lot when you adopt. You give up the ability to take it for granted that they are your kids. You give up being normal. You give up knowing that your kids love you as mom and dad completely. When you adopt transracially, you give up the ability to blend in.

When you adopt, you live with society’s notions and stereotypes. Do you love them “like your own?” Are they “real kids?” What about their “real mom?”

It goes without saying (but I will, anyway!) that to me, it’s worth it. I just want to make sure that I put that out there.

In general, people don’t ask about us anymore. I assume it’s because it’s so obvious that we are mother and son/daughter (or father and son/daughter). Or maybe it’s because it’s becoming more common or people are getting more tactful. Who knows?

But, once in awhile, like the other day, someone will ask. And it will get me thinking again.

It’s never tentative like it should be. (Honestly, I don’t mind answering a polite question.) It’s almost always abrupt.

This time, on the way out of the grocery store – “Are they foster kids?”

I answered like I always do when questions like this are asked, I said – “No, they’re mine. All mine.” and then I squeezed Lizzie and Antwan’s hands a little tighter and felt proud of the fact that they are in fact mine.

Neither Antwan or Lizzie seemed bothered by the question and I was left hoping that my carefully worded response had the desired effect on them. That it made them feel wanted.

It’s not the end of the world and it’s still worth it, but it is reality.

But, what would feel like the end of my world would be the day that one of my kids wanted to find the birth family. It would be understandable but it would suck. Just suck. After years of trying to have kids and then become parents to these kids, to be reminded that they are not all mine would be really hard for me.

Of course, there’s an extra layer to our story. At the last update, the biological mother was not any more “together” than she was before. (And, that’s all I will say on that topic.) And, at the last update, William and Kaleb had nothing but contempt for her. Lizzie and Antwan don’t have an opinion at all. Or don’t seem to, anyway. So, I’m thinking that this is not a scenario that I will be dealing with any time soon.

But, what do you do? What do you do when the kids that are yours, all yours, don’t want to be? How do you make peace with that? How do you deal with working so hard for them to exist in your life and then find yourself demoted?

There’s no ending to this post because there’s no clear answer to the question. I would want to be a noble person and handle it well, but I don’t think I would. But, I guess I would handle it one way or the other because I would have to. I signed up for this mom gig. And, I’m supposed to love my kids unconditionally. There are no rules about how they are supposed to feel.

Actually, that wasn’t a bad ending.

If anyone has any experience with this from either perspective, I’d love to hear!

A DIY Kit That Even I Can Handle.

So, Lizzie and I got to make lip balm! Candy of geekmamas gave us a “do it yourself” lip balm kit from Kiss Naturals.  It comes in an adorable package and has everything you need to make your very own lip balm. 🙂

I have to admit I had the kit for several days before we finally sat down to make the lip balm. I had trouble finding time because I wanted it to be perfect and I wanted to make sure that it wasn’t rushed. But, as a result, I frustrated Lizzie slightly as she waited to do it. The other day, I promised myself that the day wouldn’t end without all natural lip balm in our lives so I sat myself down with my girl and we got started. I soon learned that these kits don’t take a huge amount of time, but they do take enough time for you to reap the benefits of spending time with your child. 🙂 And I was reminded of how it’s more important to have the moments with your little ones (or anyone, really) than to plan the moments with them. So, I guess you could say that I learned way more than how to make lip balm.

But, back to the lip balm!

Like I said, the packaging is super cute and the directions come in both English and Spanish. The process is broken down in really easy to follow steps. So simple that my daughter was able to make the second batch all by herself. 🙂

The kit that we used makes 6 lip balms: 3 tubes and 3 containers. This is so all-in-one stop that it even includes a measuring cup and spatula.

I’m now going to summarize the steps! There’s some Safflower adding, beeswax adding, mixing, flavor adding (Bubblegum and Boysonberry), melting, and pouring. Then a handful of minutes in the fridge and you have lip balm! There might be a bit more to it, but you get the idea.



Saaflower Oil



Beeswax





Adding the flavoring


My favorite part, of course, was watching my daughter and her reactions. 🙂



On a side note, the tray (above) makes a great holder to reduce the risk of anything getting spilled.

And since it’s all natural, no crazy chemicals are going on my Lizzie’s lips.  Or mine, for that matter, because you know that I had to try some!

You can get your own on their website or on amazon. They also have other fun kits like make-your-own soap and bubble bath.

I guess I should get one of those soap kits now so I can then make my daughter wash her hands! haha.  (The things you notice too late!)

She’s been bringing them everywhere!

Thank you, Candy and Kiss Naturals. for reminding me what’s really important in life: time with your loved ones and shiny lips. 🙂

 

To Live Is To Change.

I don’t generally like change. Or change that doesn’t involve chocolate or a new pet, anyway. But, the last couple of weeks have been full of change.

After a lot of soul searching and discussing (some might say that I nagged), we made the decision to send William to a very small k12 private school. The thing about this school is that it’s on the westside. And we are not. We are about 45 minutes from the westside, actually. But, after learning about the school’s small class size, individualized learning options and familiarity with kids with special needs; it seemed worth the drive. I also love that the school is more diverse racially and that a teacher and the pastor have both adopted from foster care (one of them transracially like us). All these things convinced me that it was worth driving him across town for their “new beginning.” (That’s the name of the school, by the way.)

As you can imagine, William was not happy. He didn’t want to leave his friends at public school. But, sadly, after a year of different behavior issues and lousy grades, he didn’t really have a lot of room to complain. Not to suggest that he didn’t, haha.

So he went. He had a way more positive attitude than I expected and even cooperated with a first day picture! 

And his first week went well despite his negative opinion of this life change.

We learned a couple things. He looks spiffy in a uniform; even if he didn’t want to wear one

And we learned that despite their typical private school rules, they were willing to be flexible at times; like when your kid shows up with no shoes, for example.  Because on the third day, William  announced that he didn’t have shoes when we turned on the road to his school. Embarrassed, I went in and asked what their “no shoes” policy is. They took pity on me and said he could come in since he had socks and we live so far away. Naturally, when I went back to the van, I discovered that he was in fact not wearing socks, either. I woke up the sleeping Antwan with “Antwan, give him your socks!”  To Antwan’s credit, he did, right away. Antwan later said that he was too tired to argue, haha.

That was Wednesday. Friday, he didn’t grab his lunch box and I had to call and ask them if they would feed him. They assured me that they would give him pizza and I assured them that I would bring pizza money when I picked him up.

Meanwhile, we were thinking of sending Antwan and Lizzie, too. Antwan misses school and I think Lizzie could benefit from someone else teaching her. Where as Antwan is academically motivated, Lizzie would rather focus on the animals….and so would I. 😉  Anyway, William was able to get in on a different scholarship, but we are waiting on financially based scholarships for them.  Because even the cheapest private school in town is still a private school. After being waitlisted due to lack of funds on their end and having to reapply elsewhere; we found ourselves with a 10-12 week wait. (It’s been 3.)

So, we wait.

Also, meanwhile, I started casually looking for a job. Feeling painfully aware that we really need to bring more money in, I sent out a few resumes. When I got a call back the very next day after sending out my first, I had to face the fact that it might actually happen and before I was ready. And before I knew it, I found myself interviewing for a few different jobs in the non-profit world. They were all intriguing but one stood out as the best fit. Thankfully, they agreed. 🙂  It should have been obvious that I would end up there because it is located across from one of my all time restaurants, Beach Road Chicken. I joked to Brian that it was fate. And when I walked in for the first interview and was greeted by an office dog named Mischa, I couldn’t hide the crazy dog lady inside me. She obviously sensed it too because she sat by me and “let” me pet her while I interviewed. It’s no wonder that it went well. 😉

Anyway, I left there, feeling good and a few days later, as my son was eating “I’ll pay you later pizza,” I went in for a second interview and was offered the job.

I have a lot of mixed feelings about going back to work but I’m going for it. 🙂

So, William is in a new school and I’m in a new job. Lizzie and Antwan are still technically homeschooled until the scholarships come through.  This means two things. One, I didn’t plan this well and two, for the next several weeks, I’ll be begging my family and friends for help with them.  (If I have your number, you might want to start ignoring my calls, haha). And, poor Brian’s days off just got a whole lot busier….

I guess this is officially a new chapter in our lives. Hopefully, it’s a good one. 🙂

Don’t Yell At My Son.

“Don’t yell at my son!”

The words echoed in my head and a combination of pride and panic filled my insides. In the past, when things had gotten heated with Brian and anyone else (as will happen at some points in life), I had only panicked. I went right to the “don’t cause a scene” mentality. But, on this night, it was warranted.

It was right after bedtime, we thought we were basically done for the night. We were chatting with Kaleb about who something or other. Then the neighbor called. She never calls. My first impulse (always my first impulse) was not to answer. I’m one of those “just text me” people. But, it was weird that she was calling so I knew I couldn’t completely ignore it. Kaleb stepped in and answered. She instantly hung up and called again. Before I could answer, she texted. When, in all honesty, I texted back and told her that I was at 1%, would charge for a few and call her back; she said no, call her now. Now I wasn’t really aware that you could order your neighbors around but I dutifully called.

I have to be vague now because, even though, I’m pretty sure she doesn’t read my blog, but you never know. And, I’m not trying to gossip about others, in any way. But, since I was there, I feel it’s my story to tell, too.

Anyway, let’s just say that there had been an incident. She had found her sons in possession of something. It was something on the low end of concern (comparatively) but still not a thrilling discovery. Her sons immediately blamed my sons. Which is pretty typical. They were taken at their words and I’m told that her husband is coming down to find Kaleb, question him and call the police if he didn’t cooperate.

As I’m trying not to freak and asking her what “cooperate” means, I’m learning from Brian that Kaleb had gone out for a walk. Flash forward to me calling Kaleb in a panic and saying “Make it right. Apologize and make it right.” I was less interested in who did what and more interested in keeping the situation under control. Flash forward again to me calling her back and hearing that Kaleb is there and hearing A LOT of yelling.

All I knew was that I had to get my kid out of there. I was imagining worst case scenarios and only cared about keeping him safe. Thankfully, Brian had the same thought and we went down the street to get our kid.

As luck (or not so much) would have it, our kid was not there when we got there and we were invited to come in so we could “talk.”

We didn’t really want to talk. Not when everything was heated and so confusing. But, we went in, anyway. Brian said lots of smart, calming things as I just stood nervously. My eyes darted around the house and I wished that my house would look so put together when people come over unexpectedly. I wished folded laundry on the couch was the only thing that I would have to move. I noticed that she had lost a lot of weight and I resisted the urge to blurt it out. And I wondered where the baby was.

Side note: These are Emily defense mechanisms, through and through.

So, as they were talking, Kaleb came back. I don’t know why but suddenly, he was there, sitting angrily in their kitchen. And he was so angry. Really angry. He was breathing heavy, his body was shaking, his eyes were so bulged that, initially, I thought he had gotten hit. He looked like Bruce Banner before becoming the Hulk.

I rushed over to make sure he was ok as I told him “We are not here to gang up on you. We wanted to make sure you are ok. Are you?”

Not long after, we are all in the kitchen. Kaleb starts yelling, complete with many expletives, that he didn’t do it. (I instantly believed him, by the way. I didn’t believe that he was completely innocent but I believed he was innocent of what he was accused of.) Then the husband starts to yell at him, also with plenty of expletives. I don’t remember what he said but it was loud and it was scary.

And then, Brian stood between them, pointed his finger and said, loudly and resolutely “Don’t yell at my son.”

Time froze. This was the moment when this man could have decided to hit Brian, it could have gotten out of control, weapons could have gotten involved, anything could have happened. And, like I said, as I panicked, I was so proud.

After all the transitions and challenges, we had gotten to a point that he had his son’s back above all others. And that’s how it should be. That doesn’t mean that our kids are free to do whatever, but my husband protected his son and I was so proud.

Anyway, the rest is a little fuzzy. He said that Kaleb shouldn’t yell at his wife (which he technically wasn’t but whatever), Brian repeated himself, their son came out into the living room very loudly and very upset, the husband said we should get out of his house and we said we’d be glad to.

Once outside, I hugged Kaleb a million times, we got some clarification, and we later told our kids not to hang out with them anymore and I’m fairly confident that they told their kids the same thing.

We headed home but not before I said to Brian “I know this is a bad situation but that was so hot!”
He said I was weird but kissed me back, anyway, haha!

As I left, I told her that we would talk tomorrow when things were calmer. But when tomorrow came, we had a life to lead. We were heading to my mom’s and calling to discuss the situation was the farthest thing from my mind. Apparently, from theirs, too. I think we have all decided together without a word that we should parent our own children and move on with our lives.

The moral of this story is not that you should expect kids to mess up and you shouldn’t assume that your kids are telling you the full truth when they do mess up. I know mine don’t. It’s not even that you shouldn’t yell at other people’s children.  Those are all true, of course.  (But I get that they were reacting and just plain freaking out.)

My take-away is that I love my kids. I know my kids will lie to me and mess up and I love them anyway.  And, I love my husband and I know that he will protect his family. (I hope Kaleb took note of that, too.)  And it has made me feel even more protective of my family, too.

Every time, I tell this story to my friends, I can’t resist gushing about how hot it was when Brian stood up to him. I’ve heard more than once, that I’m weird. 😉  Weird or not, in my head, I’ve turned this scary, dramatic incident into a relationship builder, not just with my kids but with my husband.

Hey, we’ve been married for 14 years…..whatever it takes, folks, whatever it takes!