Friday, August 2
Today was the first day of Kindergarten for Boston. His school delays the start for the youngest students from the rest of the grades. He was so excited! First thing, Boston let me know he had his outfit all planned out. I arranged for a neighbor, whose daughter is in the same kindergarten class, to take him to school. Boston asked me three times to go next door to see if they were ready to go.
I’ve been up for hours, and worked out alone this morning. The sense of loneliness kept coming up, so I was glad for the hustle and bustle of the morning. The kids are still not used to getting up this early and the drama the night before had them all up too late. My oldest teenagers still live at home, but they all have jobs. Thank goodness for Liesl, who doesn’t work until evening. She and Maddy helped do the little girls’ hair — otherwise, they would have arrived at school looking like orphans!
I usually have a protein shake for breakfast every morning. I just supersized it — kale, blueberries, bananas, coconut oil, substituted a little cream and milk for the almond milk I usually use — and that was their breakfast-to-go this morning. I put six cups on the counter and kissed each of the children good-bye as they each grabbed one their way out the door. Success! They loved it.
Then it was just Maddy, the two youngest girls and me. Maddy is on traditional year around school and I have been so grateful for her being off. The house was eerily quiet. I went to my office to work on some bids and answer email. I can’t believe how lonely I start feeling again. I realized that I am always surrounded by people and by love. I decided to call a few friends and see if anyone had time for lunch. No one was available.
For some hours, the house is calm. Then the afternoon rush as the children arrived home from school. Our city has a cinema in the park every week and tonight it is Rise of the Guardians. I had Maddy make a rice casserole for the kids, while I cooked some salmon for me (part of my diet). The kids are not used to having me follow up to see that they finish their after-dinner jobs and I can tell the moms have been lax. I believe it’s easier to motivate people positively than negatively, so I told the kids that if they finished their jobs in time they could go with me. Otherwise, they would stay home with their older brothers.
When it was time to go, there were 14 of us. We popped enough popcorn to fill a garbage bag and I filled a thermos with ice water. We loaded lawn chairs and blankets into two vans and I drove one while Liesl drove the other. It was time to invade the city park!
Most families there had a mom, dad and two or three kids. It was quite a spectacle when I showed up with my entourage. A while ago, that would have been a little embarrassing. Now, I don’t worry.
A lot of people around town recognize me anyway. I am proud of my kids and how well behaved they are in public, which draws as much attention as anything.
It was amazing how many other plural families I saw at the park. Only one was recognizable as a plural family. The others looked like single moms with a bunch of kids.
We live in a very white, upscale and predominately Mormon suburb. Polygamous people are probably the biggest minority in this part of the valley. That is not to say there are not a lot of people of different racial, ethnic and religious backgrounds; they are all well received. I like that I feel part of the community, rather than living in a community that I cannot be part of the way so many polygamous people do.
In the end, I am glad my kids are learning to part of a larger community. I grew up with such fear that we did not always feel connected to the those around us. I went to bed satisfied, but very tired. I am glad this is a short term arrangement.