Monday, April 11, 2005


It seems like I used to sleep more. I didn't, I think. But it seems like I used to.

I'm in for another busy week. The Boy starts his soccer season, and I'll have baby Ty at least three days this week. Plus the obligatory trips to Columbus. Plus finishing grad school stuff. Plus grocery shopping, paying bills, remembering to shower and do laundry and cook and do dishes at two houses, etc. ad infinitum.

My dad and I were talking about names this morning. I was telling him about how I pretty much unfairly hate the name Justin. Justin is a fine old name, with a rich history. It's associated with many great and powerful characters; emperors of Byzantium, saints like Justin Martyr. And yet, I'll always mentally associate it with the trendy Justin/Dustin phase of my late 80s childhood. Somehow I file it alongside Cindy and Ashley; to me, it's gone the way of Cody and Derek.

Dad hates unisex names. I can't disagree. The only name I can think of that's equally nice on a boy or a girl is Erin/Aaron. Some nickname kinds of names are okay. Sam is cute for a girl or a boy; Jesse is nice for a boy, and Jessie is nice for a girl when it's the short form of Jessica. I'll never learn to like Rory, Riley, Ryan or Hunter on a girl. And even though they're historically male, I still cringe whenever I meet a male Ashley, Leslie, Lynn or Lindsay.

I've always been glad to have my own name. Sarah and Elizabeth are classic monikers; almost generic even. At least for me, they don't conjure up a very clear image of anything. Sarahs have been super trendy mall rats, and blue-haired grandmas, and plain and tall, and rock stars, and many more things. You can imagine a Sarah Elizabeth becoming president, or on the street corner, looking all stoner chic. It's versatile; I like that.

I especially like it because my mom likes trendy names. Sarah was trendy when I was born, actually, but at least it was part of a classic trend. She wanted to name me Cassandra. It terrifies me to think I could've grown up a Cassie. Gassy Cassie, Mama Cass, choked on a sandwich, perched upon the toilet. That would have been brilliant fun for a kid as obviously teasable as I've always been.

I wonder what I'll name my own children when I have them. I've never thought about it very much, but I think I like old family names. I like Grace and Lily for girls; they're names sort of like mine. Not entirely out of fashion, but also classic enough to transcend eras. We have mostly lowsy names for boys, though. I don't mind Thomas terribly, but the others are pretty much unsalvagable. My immediate ancestors include a Martin, a Howard, a Moses, a Leo and a Milo. I actually sort of like Milo, but Jasmin would never let me get away with it. Not that someone named Jasmin gets a lot of street cred with me when it comes to names.

Thursday, April 07, 2005


I haven't really had time to blog much lately. In fact, I don't really have any time for it today. But I always feel bad when I don't update. I don't think I have regular readers or anything, but I hate it when I start to like someone through their blog, and suddenly they just stop posting, and it's sort of like losing a friend.

So my life has been pretty much insane. Last Saturday my niece Jessica and her boyfriend Ryan were in a car accident. The weather sucked that day, and somebody lost control of their truck and ran into Jess and Ryan. They hit Ryan's side of the truck and he ended up flipping it a few times. He broke his hip and collarbone. Jess got a couple of gashes on her head, and possibly screwed up her neck pretty bad, but nothing was broken.

God works in mysterious ways. I had kept Ty the night before and he wasn't in the accident. It was so strange because I haven't had the baby much lately. The little guy had a bad a sinus infection too, and normally Jess wouldn't have him spend the night at anyone's house while he was that sick. Add to it, I'd spent three days in Columbus with Jasmin and The Boy and I was exhausted Friday night. But I was really missing the little guy, and I decided to keep him in spite of it all. If I hadn't, he very likely wouldn't be here now. The truck was completely destroyed, and the cab was twisted apart.

So I've had the baby quite a bit this week while Ryan and Jessica worked on getting out of the hospital and getting to doctor's appointments and all that. I've loved having him, but it's an awful lot of work. My baby niece, who stays at my house during the week most of the time, had a stomach virus and I couldn't take Ty home. So I was watching him at Jasmin's house where I had basically no baby supplies. He's crawling around like a champ now, so it isn't like you can just leave him sleep on the floor without constant supervision. It was a lot of work. I bought baby food and tylenol and all that to keep at Jasmin's house, and I'm going to borrow my sister's spare Pack n' Play so that he has somewhere to sleep safely while I'm staying at her house. I'm there a lot, after all.

The Boy has been having trouble on the bus. It's been going on for months, with this little boy, we'll call him Cain, attacking him and calling him names. The Boy is in third grade, and Cain is only in first. The Boy was hesitant to fight back because Cain is smaller than him, and he doesn't want to hurt him. But Cain's been starting stuff for months and The Boy is finally starting to hit back. The Boy's a very good kid, and he hates fighting. He's a bruiser when he wants to be, but he doesn't start stuff and he never intentionally hurts other kids.

Well Matt and Jasmin have been calling the school and the bus garage and all that. Today Jasmin finally talked to someone who explained some of Cain's issues. Cain's dad died earlier this year. He was shot to death by his own brother. Cain's a very angry kid. He has very good reasons to be.

We've been trying to talk to The Boy about how not everyone has people who love them like The Boy does. And not everyone is raised by people who want the best for them, and are willing to do what it takes to ensure that they get it. His mom's been having him pray for Cain every night. we've all been trying to teach him that some kids come from difficult homes, and they have hard lives, and they're so filled with misery and suffering and hate, that sometimes they just hurt people to spread the suffering. That that's the devil's influence on people who are hurting. But he can't understand why anyone would want to hurt him when he hasn't done anything. It's a big lesson for a nine-year old.

I have to talk to him tonight about Cain. I don't know how to explain to a kid from a decent family, who was raised with decent values, and not exposed to random, meaningless violence, that this little boy lost his dad in one of the most horrible imaginable ways. I want him to learn how to feel empathy without just rolling over. I want him to still fight back and defend himself without going for blood, and how to try to avoid fighting at all if he can, because this other little boy doesn't really need more pain in his life either. I've seen this kid, and if The Boy ever really lost his temper with him, the little guy would be hurting for a while.

Anyway, on top of all that, I had to get my grad school recommendation letters and all that. Ty went with me to do that yesterday. My stupid chest is still hurting. As this continues, I'm start to think that maybe Jasmin's punctured lung theory is less ridiculous than when I originally heard it. I'm sure I'll be fine though.

I have to get going. I have to pick The Boy up from school today to go to Columbus because I'm going to pick Britty up from school tonight too. I want to stop at Jasmin's house first though, and play with her poor dogs for a bit because they've been cooped up all day.

I'll probably have time to update again this weekend.