I had never really considered what being Latino meant to me until Lance Rios of Being Latino asked. It’s something that I have, at times, taken completely for granted and at other times I have resented as an unasked for burden. I love my culture, don’t get me wrong, but there have been times in my life where other people have left me feeling that I have something to prove. That I have to prove my worth as an individual because I was poor, because I was from the Bronx, because I was Latino. There have been times where I have felt that I had to even prove that I was Latino, or Latino enough, to people who were old enough and educated enough to know better than to categorize something as ephemeral as cultural identity.
I was daydreaming just now, thinking about a conversation I had earlier with another parent. We were discussing the issues his son was having in school, how amotivated his child was and their struggle to get him to make an effort. It got me to thinking about what motivates our children to achieve and then mentally, automatically rephrased it as what motivates our children to make an effort.
I think my father lived in the shadow of a brother with whom he could never compete. This brother was well-liked, affable by all accounts. He died in combat in 1966, a casualty of the conflict in Vietnam. He died just shy of his 21st birthday and thus, he will always live and loom larger than his life in the memories of our family, frozen in time as someone who never did any harm, if only because he never had a chance. He’s untouchable. My father never stood a chance.
Because I did. She became more concerned about money than about me. in the middle of a session where I shares some concerns about money and in particular, mounting expenses associated with my son’s broken wrist, she actually stopped me to ask me “but how will you pay for these sessions?”
It got worse when she called me on the day she thought was our next appointment (which turned out to be incorrect) to cancel because my insurance had rejected her last $60 claim. I told her it was going to happen because of the way my insurance works, just as I told her I had money in my healthcare flexible spending account specifically for this purpose. I would have happily arrived at her office with my check except for her complete insensitivity and coldness in calling to cancel on the DAY OF my appointment. When I explained to her first that our appointment wasn’t that day, she said oh okay, then you can pay me and I’ll see you then.
I’ve been battling some wicked fatigue due to my sleep schedule going completely down the toilet. I am trying to get back on track and I am starting to see some improvement in my level of energy, but I will be happy when DST ends. Waking up in the dark is definitely no help to my low energy level.
lunasdad was scheduled to come home for good at the end of October but then his contract was extended through the end of the year. That means we haven’t seen him since September and won’t see him until Thanksgiving. The good news is that he was able to get a contract with his old employer; after a three week stint in Seattle starting November 1, he will be home for good at Thanksgiving and able to work from home from then on for the next year or so. This is a huge relief on so many levels.
I feel “off” today. Kind of…flat. Don’t really want to do anything, struggling through work because there are problems causing confusion and delay, and generally kind of feeling tired and ambivalent about everything. Maybe I need a nap; I know going to bed at 4am didn’t improve my situation. It’s harder getting out of a funk when you work from home, I think. I find it harder to pull myself together and focus.
I’ve spent the time on leave from school, working hard on my project at work (summer is our busy season), spending time with my children and working on trying to declutter my house. I didn’t get all THAT far in the decluttering department, but I have made some important headway and that’s enough for me right now.
The last month or so, I have basically been underwater. In addition to work, school, pets, kids, enduring the absence of my husband, finishing out the church school year, choir, and trying out a new extracurricular activity (soccer), I also have weathered a few health issues, including chronic back pain due (apparently and surprisingly) to mild scoliosis, “benign labyrinthitis” which I can tell you does not feel at ALL benign, a really stubborn tooth that has me scheduled for my FOURTH root canal tomorrow, and, of course, my ever present friend, depression.
In ye olde days, doctors used to call it “compliance.” You were prescribed medication and if you took your meds, you were compliant. If, for whatever reason, you did not take your meds, you were labeled “non-compliant” with all the attendant bad juju that went with it. Non-compliant was fairly well synonymous with “difficult” or “untreatable.”
“Denial is an unconscious defense mechanism used by those faced with a painful reality. It is an automatic reaction in an attempt to reduce anxiety by denying thoughts, feelings, or facts that are consciously intolerable. It is common for those who are diagnosed with a life-long illness to go through periods of denial.”