Thursday, December 20, 2007

New Life, New Routines

While we were in California last week for my Grandmother's memorial, I was on the phone wrangling with school bureaucracies to get our foster kid's transcripts to the right folks, and to set up an intake appointment. Glen didn't want to spend one minute longer than he had to in the group home, and they couldn't release him to us until we had him enrolled in school. It was down to the wire, but by the time school offices were closing on Friday I had set it up.

Sunday, our morning flight was canceled, so I had to call Glen and let him know we would be three hours later picking him up than we had initially planned. We were literally counting the hours that last day. We arrived in the Twin Cities around six, got our car rental, dropped our stuff off, and then headed straight for the home. It was a joyful reunion.

Monday morning we took him to school to get him registered. We met with the assistant principal. I arrived at work late. Göran took the day off so he could take Glen shopping for school supplies. They came by my office, and I took them around and introduced him to my co-workers and supervisors.

Tuesday was the beginning of my new routine. Up at 5:30 a.m. so I can be at work by 7:00 a.m., and home by 3:30 p.m. Göran stays on his old schedule, and is at home late enough to see Glen off to school. Then I'm home shortly after he arrives home from school.

Göran and I were on pins and needles that whole day. We knew Glen would do great in his classes -- he's an A student. But we knew how important it would be for him to find new friends and feel accepted. He confided in us that he was nervous. This school has a student body ten times the small-town school he last attended. They have a rule at the school banning the use of cell phones, so I just had to wait the old fashioned way till the end of the day to hear how everything had gone.

That night Glen reported that the students at his new school were very open and friendly, and on his very first day he'd already met a girl who wanted to introduce him to her whole circle of friends. By the end of Wednesday there were other new friends, and no more nervousness or pins or needles. By the end of today, he produced a note another new friend had been passing to him, a girl with an obvious crush.

Last night, I had to take Glen to a meeting. Later, we talked about a youth group he wants to get involved in. Today I stopped at a book store to pick up Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson, for an over-the-holidays English assignment. When I arrive home from work now, I get new reports about classes, homework, new friends. Göran and I are planning weekend activities for our new family. Life at home now revolves around meals, bedtime, school.

I've had less time for blogging. I'm in bed every night now by 10:30 p.m.! Work has required a special, new kind of discipline in order to coordinate projects on my new schedule. Most of my spare time is spent gearing up for teaching in the spring.

Somehow I once would have thought these changes unimaginable. Now they're reality. I'm amazed how incredibly happy I am -- we are. This is our new life!

7 comments:

GeckoMan said...

John,
I am so cheered by your buoyant attitude and personal joy! I will hope and pray for your continued happiness with Glen. Parenting is like seeing life fresh again through new eyes, isn't it? And it sounds to me like you two are doing just great along the winding road to successful parenting. Keep up the good work and positive support system.

Beck said...

Having children being at the forefront of my thoughts, and how my decisions affect them, really changes, but concentrates my focus and purpose in life. I've been reminded recently that "parenting is the one calling you don't get released from".

My children anchor me more than any other influence. Welcome to the anchored life.

yusahana6323 said...

Still glad everything is running so smoothly for you guys, and that Glen is getting along so well! The schedule does seem difficult, but as long as you're happy it'll be worth it, right? :)

MoHoHawaii said...

I hope you continue to post to your blog sometimes, even though your schedule is tighter now. Your loyal readers are waiting.

Life can be sweet. Savor the happiness that has come your way. Many congratulations!

J G-W said...

Thanks, everyone!

Yes, this is all very very good, and anchoring and time-consuming and worth every minute and ounce of energy and then some.

Yes, I will continue to post regularly. Whether I can do it as frequently or not remains to be seen. I suspect I'll find more time as we get into the new routines.

Holly said...

I'm really glad that the day-to-day aspects of life with Glen are so rewarding. And as I'm writing on Christmas eve, I hope your first Christmas as a parent is unbelievably wonderful!

J G-W said...

Holly - Best Christmas ever!