Tuesday, April 30, 2019

#sol19 Come Now

"Come see," he said pulling on my sleeve with urgency usually reserved for overturned gallons of milk.

I was enjoying a bit of Easter dinner after a long day of cooking, and thus I responded casually "Later."

"Come now," he urged pushing me out of my chair and taking the fork out of my hand. It was harder to ignore him this time as his insistence was clear.

His mother also sensed the urgency in his voice and volunteered, "I've got this one." as she got up.

"Come up and see the bubbles," he smiled proudly as I got up clearly aware that he wanted me to see something he did not perceive to be ominous. He wasted not time pulling me up the stairs and leading me to the sink where he had created the largest bubble collection of his life.

"Look at this bubble!" he exclaimed arms spread open in celebration of his creation.

"You're going to need to buy more soap," his mother smiled as she snapped the picture and offered, "I see a blog post coming."

This clearly is a slice of life in my world reliving toddler-needing-privacy-potty-training-hand-washing.

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

#SOL19 Book Birthday(s)

This week, 
Amidst the sad news from Paris,
Storms of life, 
There are still reasons to celebrate.
Including, the "birthday"
Of two books
 By Della Ross Ferreri,
My niece.
Filled with love and rhymes,
Glimpses of childhood experience.

I'm proud not only her gifted writing,
But also of her determination, 
Her tenacity,
To publish again, times two.
Here is a link to Beep Beep

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Battle With Grasses

On the edge of Palm Sunday, while the buds were popping and the sunshine was momentarily great, during a battle with overgrown grasses that should have been fought last fall, I broke 2 shovel handles. Admittedly, the shovels were old as noted by the name of a long ago local store faded on the handle. Admittedly, both handles had been repaired at some time as noted by the tie straps and duct tape; yet the fact that I broke two shovels while removing 5 huge, palm-like bushes of grass on the edge of Palm Sunday is still noteworthy and I think it sends a message.....

the problem is that I am not sure what that message is!

Perhaps, I should have let those grasses grow even though they took over my patio each  summer.
Perhaps, I should be moving to an apartment or a condo complex devoid of yard work.
Perhaps, I should just find a landscaper to do this.
Perhaps I should invest in a new shovel? 

Friday, April 12, 2019

#right track, wrong train

I got on the wrong train  I was thinking about a meeting and didn't stop to think that the train leaving in 2 minutes was NOT what I was expecting. Perhaps I was also a bit cavalier about my abilities to maneuver this new commute and thus I found myself on an express train going right past my stop!

They don't stop the train for people on the wrong train and jumping from a moving train is not only frowned upon but also likely to cause bodily injury!  So I rode to the first stop, 20 miles past my stop, feeling incompetent and embarrassed that I had not been more careful.  I was certainly disappointed in myself! "Happens all the time," the conductor offered when I explained my predicament.  "You'll have about 4 minutes to get to the southbound line and catch the next train."  He was so calm and cool about the whole thing while my own blood was boiling!

I got off the train, as instructed by the conductor and walked under the track to the south bound track to wait for the next (non express) train.  As I walked, I was not alone.  There were three others who got off the train and were waiting for the next train in the other direction.

"Happens all the time," one of the fellows offered with a shrug of his shoulders.

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

#sol19 A tiny flower

"Look at the purple," he begged as he grabbed my hand to show me the single, tiny purple flower nestled in the garden rubble. "It's bu-ful!" he sighed as we examined the tiny miracle that somehow emerged from some wayward seed that nestled in garden rubble. At that moment, I was so glad I had not, yet, cleaned out that garden bed!  

"It's spring," his cousin offered, "and it's so pretty." We stood around the single flower, a gaggle of preschoolers that was quiet for a moment as they admired the spring miracle.

To be honest, there were bushes filled with thousands of emerging forsythia buds and patches filled with daffodils in the neighbors' yards; but, the tiny crocus of unknown of origin was at pre-school-eye-level and within inches of the impromptu sand-dirt-construction-pit on a warm spring morning filled with hope and promise.

Like spring itself, this tiny flower was a reminder that bright sunshine will surely follow dark days.

Friday, April 5, 2019

To begin again.

I wonder how many children,
Parents and teachers,
Have walked in the spotless hallways,
Have held onto the intricate railings,
Have contributed to the character,
Have learned to read, write, think,
Create, respect, dream
In the classrooms and hallways.
I respect the staff 
Who maintain the buildings
Who inspire the staff,
Who create magical learning environments
Who make me wish I was young again,
So I could begin my educational journey

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

Disabilities in The Media

My grad students did presentations last night of disabilities as depicted in the media. I was a bit wary of the project and was expecting I might get a lot of the same thinking (erroneously) that the disabled are not typically represented in the media.  Instead, I was personally amazed at how much things are changing thanks to my Grad Students and my Visiting Professor Friend, Raphaela.

Here is Auggie from Wonder, the movie and the book.

Meet Asher whose Mom asked, "Why," and who is an Osh Kosh model!

Here's Jackie from the Real Housewives dealing with Autism at home

Check out Tim's Place in Albequerque

Here is Greta Thrunberg, diagnosed with Autism advocating for the environment.
And, just for perspective, here is a glimpse of the Harlem Valley Psychiatric Center where I worked long ago.  Thankfully, we are living in a world that is changing (still no where near perfect) but changing for the better.

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

#sol19 My Turn

I took a deep breath as I entered the office, not sure of the outcome, the next steps, the path ahead. "One foot in front of the other," I assured myself without saying a word aloud as my heart rate increased slowly but surely with each step. I could feel my breathing increase as I pulled the door open, although the door was not heavy at all. I could feel the cold florescent lighting send a chill through my body.  "Why not rethink the layout of waiting rooms," I wondered?

I signed in, took my seat and then I waited, seemingly forever, but in reality, time measured in minutes. I pretended to read an old People magazine, distracted a bit with tales of J.Lo, Alex, Celine and Kelly.
I looked through decorations in an old edition of Good Housekeeping wondering about the next year.
I checked my phone for messages and there were none.
I checked my email and there were advertisements from Michaels (40% off one item), Joanne's (30% off everything) and Gap (I'm sure I have not shopped there in many years).
I opened the daily Sudoko and it was an easy completion in 4 minutes! 
I opened the Sudoko app and played a "hard" game completing it in 12 minutes with no mistakes.
I took a deep breath as the room seemed to empty, knowing my turn was ahead.
I heard my name in the distance, perhaps, or in the room, more likely, wondering in the moment if I should change my name even though it served me well for many years. 
It was not an April Fool's joke, it was my turn.