[Private journal entry written on Monday, September 17, 2012]
Yesterday, I spent most of the day with my mom. We had a very enjoyable time together
I went to church with her in the morning, then we headed out into the mountains to take in the fall colors – the aspen trees are turning and there are miles and miles of glowing golden aspen trees all over the sides of the mountains. It is breathtaking!
We meandered through the burn area from the massive High Park Fire that occurred this summer. We tried to find my friend’s house – the friend who thought her house had burned down but then later found out it had been saved by her neighbor. I wasn’t able to find her house because I couldn’t remember exactly on which mountain road it is located. But, I know we were in her neighborhood. The fire damage was shocking to our senses.
We stopped and had a picnic lunch on the side of the road . . . we couldn’t find a picnic table that wasn’t in use, so we just sat in the car with our feet hanging out the doors. It was quite windy, so that may have been the best option, anyway!
After lunch, we went in search of the burned home of one of my mom’s friends. The road was narrow and windy . . . although it was currently quite passable even in my little car. However, I could easily see how, with just a little rain or winter weather, it would quickly turn into a 4WD-required road. It was incredibly twisty and hilly . . . in many places, it was only wide enough for one vehicle and the crests of the hills created dangerous blind spots. There were so many dips and bumps that I was concerned about bottoming out my car . . . but it made it just fine. However, we weren’t able to find my mom’s friend’s house because the landscape looked so different. She had been there only once or twice before, and she wasn’t able to identify the landmarks she had followed before.
We were a little nervous about venturing into that particular area because we have heard a number of stories about people getting shot at for trespassing. I heard that a couple of people had actually died as a result of being shot while trespassing. As we were driving around, we saw many, many hand-painted signs nailed up on fence posts:
”We have guns and we aren’t afraid to use them!”
”Don’t give us reason to have to protect our property!”
”Trespassers will receive no warning before being shot!”
We were very careful to not accidentally pull into someone’s private driveway . . . and we waved and smiled a bit at every person we passed. No one stopped us and no one gave us a hard time . . . I guess two ladies – one middle-aged and one elderly – don’t appear prone to trespassing and vandalizing, LOL. I imagine we didn’t look too threatening.
Anyway, it was a very enjoyable day. Once we got back into town, I dropped my mom off at her house and then headed back to my little town . . . I had lessons scheduled for the evening.
As I was getting the studio set up for the evening lessons, the owner of the print shop stuck her head into my studio space. She thanked me for handling the carbon monoxide situation. She said she didn’t worry about me because she knew I’d handle it just fine.
I told her that I had left the windows open Saturday afternoon and then had closed everything back up Saturday night, and that the alarm was not going off when I came into the building on Sunday evening. So, apparently, the build-up had been from the carpet cleaning machine and not from anything else.
So, that was my Sunday . . .
Today (Monday), Bella unexpectedly showed up in the evening and handed me a check and apologized for missing her lesson. She said her mom sent her up with the check because her mom needed to stay with the two little kids in the car. I thanked her for the check and told her I’d see her on Friday . . .
I didn’t say anything to her about missing the lesson because she’s not at fault . . . it’s her mom’s fault, and I’m not going to make Bella carry a message to her mom about disrespectful behavior . . . I’ll have that conversation directly with Kris when the time is right.
This evening, as I was kicked back and relaxing, I was watching the TV shows Hoarders and Intervention. The people featured in the shows are people who are dealing with huge issues that are keeping them from living up to full potential. In both shows, there were kids being affected by the behaviors of the parents. It was tough to see how much the kids were suffering as a result of their parents’ behaviors.
As I was watching these parents engage in such terrible parenting behaviors, I kept thinking, “I’m so glad I don’t have kids . . . if I had kids, my kids would be experiencing stuff like the kids on the shows were experiencing. There is no way I could raise kids. I think I could do maybe 5-10% of what is required to do a good job of raising kids because I’m spending so much of my time and energy on simply surviving. There is no way I could get anywhere close to providing 100% of what kids would need.”
At about that point in my thought process, it dawned on me that being a CASA will allow me to do the 5-10% I am capable of doing without my taking on the entire 100%. It will allow me to do what I can do.
I do want to contribute to kids’ lives . . . I want to do what I can do . . . I want to be at least that much of a parent . . . and being a CASA will allow me to do that.