Thursday, April 02, 2009


There is nothing scarier than sitting beside your child in a hospital bed as they sob, not knowing what is wrong. After a great performance in the Greater Moncton Music Festival today, I took Erin back to school shortly before lunch only to receive a call around 1:30 that she’d almost collapsed in class while giving her oral presentation. I raced to school to pick her up and found her in tears with a blinding headache, almost unable to stand or walk on her own.

Five hours later we are home again and I have nothing but praise for the ER staff at the Moncton Hospital who got her right onto a stretcher in the trauma side and up for a CAT scan in a matter of hours. How thankful I am to live in a country with medicare tonight and for doctors who took her pain seriously, especially when they discovered that pressure on a certain spot at the back of her head made the pain escalate. The doctor immediately reassured her that this was a good sign since it probably meant that it was muscular or nerve related. I feel blessed that the CAT scan revealed nothing internal to worry about. The pinched nerve that had been bothering her earlier in the year has probably just reared its ugly head again in a rather dramatic way. The doctor recommended a stronger anti-inflammatory and a follow-up with our own family physician in a week to explore other options if the pain is still there.

I feel weak with relief and yet also far more sensitive to parents whose answers aren’t always as a relief as what I heard tonight.

Monday, March 30, 2009


In the whirlwind that has been supply teaching, drawing, stitching and volleyball season, I sometimes don’t know whether I am coming or going! We’ve had 3 tournaments in 3 weekends, only one of which was close enough to avoid a hotel stay. Erin has been in her element, but the rest of us are a bit bench weary.

The past few weeks have seen a wonderful melting of our snow which causes neighbours to stop and chat during their evening walks or children to don sneakers instead of boots to test out bikes. Yesterday, it was so warm that I hung the first load of towels outside on the line while I coaxed my family for a walk in the park near our home.

What a difference 24 hours can make here in the Maritimes. We woke up to our second spring blizzard in less than a week. Everything ground to a halt last Tuesday as well. The difference with this storm is that we’ve had SO much snow fall today that the roads are still almost impassible. We’ve certainly had more than the 20 cm they were calling for (almost 8 inches) Nick JUST came in from wrestling with the snowblower for over an hour and a half. The massive storm looks like it will dump a further 15 cm (almost 7 inches) on us tonight!

I have spent the whole day in my pyjamas. I can’t remember the last time I did that when I wasn’t sick and it felt wonderful. We sometimes need these unexpected moments that force us to be still to remember to recharge our batteries.

In a society where we heat or cool our cars and buildings, we sometimes think that life should go on “as normal” every single day, regardless of what Mother Nature throws at us. I think perhaps that we have separated ourselves to much from listening to the rhythm of the seasons and the weather. So instead of trying to get anywhere today, we spent time as a family. We watched Twilight, Bethany and Nick enjoyed a good round of Lego Batman, I knit and stitched, Erin researched a mini-project due Friday and drew a manga.

With the arrival of a grand nephew in the family, I’ve had an excuse to play with some baby wool that creates its own pattern as you knit. Here is Liam’s jester hat before I put the first pompom on!

Here is the wool that I want to play with to make a long pair of socks as soon as I finish my blue pair. This is all Barb’s fault for sending me that first ball of Opal wool over a year ago and Yarn Harlot for writing such an easy to follow sock pattern!!! I honestly never thought I would get this addicted to socks!

Of course I learned the hard way over the past 3 weekends that I can only knit scarves at volleyball tournaments. I knit by feel and use the needles in my hand to keep from chewing my fingernails to little stubs when the score gets close. The 4 row moss stitch pattern that I’d tried to start for Liam’s jacket was a total disaster because I could never remember which row I was on. So I just made 9 scarves instead! Maybe that’s why winter hasn’t left yet.

It is wonderful to see both my daughters coming into their own. Bethany has started a 10 week modeling course and just loves it. I enrolled her to help with her posture, because she’d begun to slouch a bit, but she is having fun learning about proper nutrition, body care and how to walk down a runway. Great fun for someone who was hooked on America’s Top Model in reruns!

Erin had a brilliant weekend in Halifax at the tournament, even though her team got eliminated in the semifinals after going into them as the top ranked team in the tourney. Her coach had purchased silver medals for each team member to make up for the lack thereof at the last tournament along with two MVP trophies. Erin not only scored the winning points to get her team to the semifinals, she also spent Saturday encouraging her team not to give up when the going got tough... which earned her this bling from a very classy coach.

This weekend, she also met the scout from one of the universities in Nova Scotia who asked if he could talk to us at tournaments over the next few years as Erin went through High School! I am sure that this won’t be the last time someone talks to us about where Erin might play and go to school someday, but it was pretty exciting to meet a scout at almost 14!

Just as the weather can switch from one extreme to another, our lives can change from one day to the next...

but with every warm day comes the promise of spring...

with every blank page comes a drawing to be...

with every ball of yarn come countless possibilities...

and with every experience... come hundreds of dreams.

Dream Well!