Thursday, July 28, 2016

About Last Night

Last night I was asked by my husband to take Colin to a presentation by Johns Hopkins University as he had to work late. When I arrived home from work, I fed the dog and asked Colin about the event. He was concerned that he was not signed up and wasn't sure if he was interested in the school. I ended up convincing him we should go.

When we arrived at our destination, I was encouraged that the parking lot was not crowded. I told Colin that I doubted we would get turned away but if we did, I would take him to dinner. As we approach the door, Colin's guidance counselor greeted him and asked how his brother was doing. I told him that the casts were removed and he is healing up nicely. Colin expressed concern about failing to register for this talk and was ushered in with a smile and assurances that this was fine.

I let Colin choose where we sat. He picked some seats near the doorway. This was his first college presentation and I was interested to see how he would react. I took a few notes while Colin seemed to be attentively listening. At one point he glanced at my notebook and grabbed the pen out of my hands. He quickly scribbled an "s" after John. Duh! It's Johns Hopkins not John....

Kid does not miss a trick!

Dinner Out

On the way home, I asked Colin about picking up some dinner. He was very agreeable. He seemed to be in a decent mood and a bit chatty. I can't remember how we got on the topic, but he mentioned about all the time he had built up on one of his games (Fall Out?). He mentioned that it was over 1,000 hours and that it is measured in two week intervals. Recently he had over 50 hours per week!!! When I feigned surprise ( I already knew this from keeping tabs) and said, " Wow! That is a lot of time! That's like a full time job!" He assured me that it was not as bad as it looked. Much of that time he was logged in but not playing. He was either waiting for a game to load or occupied with something else.

I asked about restaurants and we ended up agreeing to eat at Bob Evans near our home. I thought it might be nice to invite the other boys so I put a call into my eldest. He said he'd be up for it but changed the dinner to another place. One of our favorite pubs has "All You Can Eat Shrimp" on Wednesdays.

We had a lovely dinner and lively conversation. And best of all, not one "shush" from Colin. As we left to go home my elder boys, who drove together, decided to hang out in the area to go "Pokemon Hunting" while Colin and I left for home. We had a good chuckle watching all the "zombies with cell phones" trying to capture mythical creatures.

Oh wait, now I remember, the conversation about gaming came AFTER dinner.

A Few Other Tidbits

We recently bought a new-used car. It is a 2 year old Chrysler with all the safety bells and whistles. Colin mentioned that he would prefer that he learn to drive on our old mini van. This way if he had an accident, it would not be as devastating.

Not sure how I feel about that!

The last two nights Colin has gone to bed (sofa) at a decent hour and in his basement room. He had been sleeping on the couch in the family room to avoid bugs in the basement; an unfortunate hazard that is to be expected. I also noticed that lately he had been wearing a green knit cap that reminded me of Mike Nesmith of the Monkees. I did not give that much thought.

michael monkee mike nesmith Car TuningLast night my husband told me a funny story about the day before. Colin had his follow up visit to the ENT doctor to see how he was doing after the surgery. Dad mentioned that his son was concerned about his scars and is wearing a cap to hide his ears.

Colin was irritated and spoke up. "That's not why I wear it!!!"  he blurted out. "It's to protect against the spiders!"

The nurse had a puzzled look on her face and Hubs had to hold in his amusement. Now it all made sense. He wanted to sleep in his room and was worried about spiders getting in his hair. Love these "Ah-Ha Moments"!

As always.... We are a work-in-progress!

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Holiday Weekend

It seems like Colin has been in a better mood since his ear surgery. We are still subject to shushes but they seem a little less frequent. It also seems like we are able to get longer threads of conversation with our son.
Both my husband and I wonder if this is due in part to a successful ear surgery to remove excess tissues in the ear sinus, as well as to close up to hole he's had since birth

The purpose of the procedure was to eliminate a source of constant infection. While we don't believe that the pit was a direct cause of Colin's sound issues, we think that by cutting down on infection-causing bacteria in the ear sinus cavity, his symptoms may be reduced. I asked my middle-son if he noticed a difference and he did but attributed it to a different set of factors: Colin was happy to have the summer free for activities and was excited about the possibility of working. Either way works for me!

Unfortunately due to the fact we are unable to discuss his sound sensitivities, we have no way of knowing for sure.

Making Strides

Cross Country team practices started right after Colin's surgery. It seems like his days are back on schedule. He needs to be at his school by 9:00 a.m. and I have been doing most of the shuttling. On one of these trips, I noticed that there was a community pool just a block from the High School. Colin is anxious to find a life guard job. We found out that there may be an opening in late July / early August when college students start to go off to school. He dropped off an application.

In addition to running, he is working on a study guide for Biology based on a book and coursework from this past school year. He plans to market it to fellow students. Colin is also working on Calculus notes for his NHS service project where he plans to be a tutor.

I am relieved that Colin has some activities other than video games to occupy his time this summer.

He will be taking a one week Summer Gym class and is looking into trombone lessons.

Independence Day

The family of one of my middle-son's friends has an annual party on July 3rd. Colin has not gone for the last several years due mostly to not wanting to run into kids from his old school. I was surprised and delighted when he decided to attend with his brothers this year. Colin realized the only people he would know would be his brother's friends.

I socialized with the adults while my boys disappeared into the house. As the party was beginning to wind down, I went in to find the boys.  Colin was playing cards with his middle-brother and three other boys. It did my heart good to see him laughing and having a great time.  They made me stay for another 30 minutes while the finished their game. I gratefully obliged.

On the way out to our car, I noticed a camaraderie between the boys that has been rare to see these past few years. I also noticed that Colin has grown another inch or so and is now about my height.

My heart was filled with joy!

Time Keep Flying By!

I started this post a week ago and am happy to report that we are still on track. Sunday we went to dinner as a family at a nearby pub. Earlier that day I took the boys to Walmart to buy canvases and paints for Colin and his middle brother. Inspired by seeing his middle-brother's artwork from the past school year, Colin decided he wanted to paint as well. Mostly this is due to a competitive streak and thinking he can do a better job than his talented brother.

I can't wait to see what the rest of the summer holds. I am savoring every bit of normalcy as no one knows what the future holds. I will remain hopeful!

As always, we are a work-in-progress!