Okay, I admit it, I haven't got the phone calls made yet. I hate using the phone. Just hate it. Can't stand it at all. Just Do Not Like It. I will avoid making phone calls like nobody's business. One of my cousins also hates to use the phone, so she is of course my favorite person to talk to on it. She calls up, asks, "is it a good time for whatever," I answer, "yes," she says, "I'll be right over." That is a conversation for us. Information requested, received, and acted upon. No idle chitchat for us.
Alright, my mother is exempt from my telephone-hating. I do LOVE to talk to my mother on the phone. But that is because she is my mother, and she rates, and her conversations are so much fun and all about people I know and mostly like or love, and because SHE IS MY MOTHER.
Today I will try to get those darned calls made. After my morning babysitting the Amazing A. I did talk to our Victim Advocate yesterday, but that was because she called me. The trial is continued yet again, this time until July. This is the fourth continuation. Drat blast it all--KidThree had gotten herself all psyched up emotionally to testify and the rug is pulled out from under her AGAIN. She and her alleged assailants may be old enough for retirement by the time our justice system gets around to an actual trial with actual testimony. Poor KidThree. I so hate to see her on this damned rollercoaster--I want the trial over with! She needs closure!! The shooting was fifteen months ago. She has wrapped her head around the reality of being paraplegic and she needs the trial to be over and done with so she can leave that part of her life behind and get busy focusing solely on the wheel-y life in front of her.
We have an ongoing issue with KidFour: she can be a little sneaky about money. KidFour joined the household a little while back and was not raised, in her previous life, with the 'all for one and one for all' attitude that we (at our economic level) need to live by. I can be bemoaning the lack of rent money while she is sitting on a wad of cash (okay, a very small wad in comparison to the rent) and she won't say a thing. Right now her contacts are in at the optometrists and I didn't want to pay for all of them, but had to figure out a way to find out what money she could contribute. My eventual solution was this: I decided how much I could contribute, then told her, "I can give you this much money towards your contacts--if you have the rest on your own, you can go pick them up tomorrow." She nodded, so I know she has at least that much in her stash. That works. If she didn't, she could have said so and we could have come to some other arrangement (the trick was to not let her know that).
Yesterday KidThree and I went to a support group for people with spinal cord injuries (SCI). We recently switched healthcare providers because of a change in coverage and learned about this group just last week at our first thorough appt with the new providers. The group was lovely. KidThree has some serious trust issues stemming from her previous life in a very, very difficult and hostile environment, but we had previously gone to group therapy for teens with anger management issues; there she learned that it was safe to talk in protected settings. Yesterday at the group she opened up right away and talked freely with the few attendees. What a marvelous change from several years back when we started the other group therapy and she just glared at everyone for several weeks, eventually progressing to grunting and after a long while actually getting to where she could participate comfortably. Seeing evidence of progress like that is what keeps me going in this peculiar world of parent/not-parent. (KidFour is also making progress, which is why I put up with the 'it's my money,' issue. One thing at a time, and that is not the focus right now.)
After that session, we headed over to KidThree's grandmother's house for a visit. KidThree's older sister also lives there with her new baby and her babydaddy. KidThree's bio-mother came by for a visit while we were there. I spent a wonderful couple of hours in visiting with the grandmother and holding the baby (age 3 1/2 months) while KidThree visited with her mother and sister out in front. Grandma was in bed, so while we chit-chatted I sat in her wheelchair and wheeled back and forth gently while BabyGirl slept on my shoulder. It was so nice to have that baby-damp shoulder again, and equally nice to give the baby back at the end of the visit.
We are on the second day of our first really hot spell in this apartment. We don't have central air here, only an air conditioner in the living room. The a/c does a fairly good job in the living room/kitchen, but it doesn't get to the bedrooms. We have a couple of fans but are going to need more. Maybe this afternoon I can go buy a couple. We had to give up several amenities to get accessibility--I miss the washer/dryer in the apartment, occasionally miss the dishwasher, and am SERIOUSLY going to miss the central air. Oh well. KidThree can get into this apartment and that is all that really counts. Other people manage to live without central air--we can too.
Other things to get done today: buy some hangers and take some of KidTwo's things to the storage space. (When KidOne needed to move in a little while back to manage with the harsher economic reality while in college, she put most of her household things into storage. Then when KidTwo packed up and left the area recently but had to leave some things behind because she couldn't afford to ship them immediately but wanted to keep them, there was KidOne's handy-dandy storage space to use.) The need for hangers is because KidOne's stuff came without them; hers are all in storage. We used to have lots of extra hangers, but now we have lots of extra clothes.
The next major project will be to get the living room kid-friendly. I am babysitting to earn money but since the living room is unfortunately not kid-friendly, I have to babysit in clients' homes, which largely defeats the purpose of leaving the workforce to care for KidThree. I had thought things would be squared away by this time, seven months after the move here, but two months after The Move KidFour moved in, bag and baggage. After getting her things and her situated, KidOne moved in. That took a little less work re: accomodation as so much of her stuff went into storage, but it still took some weeks to get things sorted out. Then KidTwo had an unexpected but marvelous opportunity land in her lap, so she moved out of the country with all of a month's notice. Time was so short for her that we all had to do some helping and she wasn't able to get the last few things in her apartment taken care of, so Mom to the rescue to bring them here, sort them out, wash the things that needed it, and get everything packed and stored until shipping funds became available. With the trip to the storage space that I may make today (but probably won't, as it will be over 100 degrees), the living room will finally again be clear of the detritus of young people's life changes. Then Mom can get to work. I need about $750 worth of things from IKEA to get it organized and kid-friendly. Bright colors, games and books accessible, and no random stacks of moving boxes or baskets overflowing with clothes/bedding/household goods to frighten off prospective clients. The carpet also needs a good cleaning. The various moves and such have been hard on it. I want to get that all done within the next month so I can try to find a child or two to watch over the summer, but am not sure if the funds will be available. I can only hope.
Right now off to wash the dishes that have been soaking for the last little while, then to shower and take care of KidThree for a bit. Got to do dishes before showering, as that corner of the kitchen gets a bit hot when dishwashing in the heat. (That is one of the places I definitely need to put a fan. A big fan.) Then off for six hours of caring for the Amazing A, who really is my favorite child to care for.