Monday, August 23, 2010

stress dreams

I read once that dreaming about your teeth falling out is a classic stress dream.  Neil has these all the time, but I never have, until last night.  I fell asleep at 9:30 out of sheer exhaustion and slept all the way until the alarm went off at 5:55 (running time!).  Here are the two dreams I remember:
  • Abigail's kindergarten teacher told me she was moving her to the lowest-level literacy group because Abigail keeps decorating all her letters (the literacy group was just in the dream, but in real life, Abigail comes home every day and tells me "today I wrote my name AaaaBbbbbGgggAaaa" etc. or "Today I drew strings on all my letters so they could hang from the ceiling."  So I feel caught between wanting to encourage creativity, and wanting her to write properly so that her teacher knows she CAN write properly, since they're doing all the competency testing right now.
  • I walked into class to teach and every time I smiled, another splinter came off my teeth.  My students muttered to each other, "Wow, she'd be beautiful, except for those hideous teeth!  I can't even look!"
So yes.  I am feeling a little stressed right now.  Some of it I expected--Abigail starting school, plus Neil and I starting up again.  Neil starting work as a TA again, which means earlier mornings and later nights.   Half-marathon training.  Trying to preserve all the garden produce (fortunately or unfortunately, the tomatoes have not produced anywhere near what they have in years past, thanks to the hideous blight that has swept across our county...).  Trying to squeeze in quality time with Neil and with the kids somewhere in the midst of all this.  Adjusting our day around drop-off and pick-up times.  Neil and I spent a lot of time last week trying to figure out what we could do to streamline our lives and function more effectively.

But there are also things I have NOT expected.  Meal-prep, for one.  I can't start making dinner when I used to, because it's right when Abigail gets home.  And she's hungry, and I want to talk to her about her day and help her with her homework.  Last week we ate a lot of zucchini and tomatoes (minimal prep time!). I'm realizing that I need to completely rethink the way I'm cooking and the kinds of meals I'm preparing to accommodate this (I used to do a lot of meal prep at lunchtime, but that time's gone now too because I need to drop her off at school).  I know we'll work it out, but it's a little stressful until we do.

And the biggie: Juliet locking herself in the bathroom every day when I say, "Okay, kids, put on your shoes, it's time to take Abigail to kindergarten."  (Or when we need to go pick her up.  Guess what?  On the second--the second!!--day of school, I got to be the frantic parent chasing the bus trying to retrieve my five-year-old, who hadn't recognized her stop because I was late, due to peeling screaming Juliet off the carpet when she didn't want to go meet the bus.  AWESOME.)

Heads-up to those of you who visit our home:  as of tonight, there will be no more bathroom locks.  Just so you know.


Please don't read this and panic, if you are related to me. :-)  I really am okay.  Just on the run, so to speak.  And there have been many wonderful peaceful moments in the last week.  Probably more than usual, since I'm making a big effort to have quality time in the mornings before Abigail leaves, and cram in my to-do list while everyone's napping. 


Anonymous said...

Stress dreams are awful. Hope you sleep better tonight.

Love, Aunt Pam

Emily Juliet Ainian said...

Why does Juliet lock herself in the bathroom when you need to go pick up Abigail? hahae

Meghan said...

OK, here's a challenge that you'll have for the next 18 years: when the kids get home from school, they are hungry! But you can't eat dinner for at least another hour until your husband gets home, by which time they are not interested in eating. This worked best for us when Dad was out of work and we ate dinner after school.
Good luck! At least Abigail accepts peas and fruit as a snack, so she can just eat half her dinner early.
It will all work out....

aLi said...

I am panting just from reading your post. Sounds like you're training for a half marathon in your day-to-day life!!!

Dani said...

Oh, hang in there. It's always stressful those first few weeks (like I'm an expert or something with a 1st grader, right?). You'll fall into a routine in no time and you'll love hearing about her day while she helps you make dinner and your two other kiddos drive her crazy because they've missed her so much. Sounds like you guys have a lot going on.

Neil said...

In my teeth dreams, my teeth are always dissolving. I can feel them bubbling and fizzing and they just fall apart into sandy chunks. Those are the worst dreams.

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