Dinners, TB, college continues.

I’m quite tired. I asked Jeremy tonight why I’m so tired. All week, I’ve felt like I’m sleeping enough and then Jeremy said – we are not sleeping enough. We are not asleep until 11 and we are getting up at 5:30. That is not enough sleep.

We hosted four dinners for ten each weekday night. Thank goodness it was the same ten! Alice’s husband was out of town for the week and normally, I wouldn’t host four consecutive dinners for the same group of people, but we had extenuating circumstances. It was fun and I was happy we were able to pull this off. On Thursday night, both Jeremy and I were out of the house (Jeremy at a downtown meeting and me at BTSN) and the group dinner still happened over takeout Chinese food.

Dinner together.

I spent a lot of the week doing lots of paperwork for my hospital job. I had to renew my CPR certification one morning. And then I had to go to my annual health checkup at work in which they’ll fit you for an N95 mask (airborne precautions), do your blood test for sugar, lipids, take a BP (all fantastic. I’m like a 20 year old inside.) and then run the TB testing (I am negative I DO NOT HAVE TB). The CDC just recommended that annual screening for health care workers can be dropped because the rate that healthcare workers get TB is extremely low. But it didn’t stop me from fretting for a whole 48 hours that I had TB because I had redness/puffiness around the injection site which I obsessed over (I’ve never ever had a hint of reaction at any other TB test I’ve ever done) and scoured the internet for hours for pictures to compare my arm to. We had a TB patient on our unit for SIX months. We all rotated taking care of him. I asked if that counted as an exposure and the checkup people said it did not because the patient was in the special air handling room and we all wore our N95 masks and he was taking his antibiotic cocktail (mostly). I know all the ED nurses get random people off the street coughing on them all the time some with active TB, so I shouldn’t be that scared because the CDC recommendation must have included the thousands of ED health care workers. But I was. And then I spent time regretting ever becoming a nurse and thinking to myself every good deed gets punished. One the first night after the test, I woke up at midnight and checked my arm for induration and was sure it was positive and then resisted waking Jeremy up. I managed to fall asleep until 5am and then I woke him up and told him I was worried but that I managed to not wake him up at midnight and he said – thank you. thank you for not waking me up at midnight to say that you have TB. Upon telling Vickey my concerns, first she said – wait, when was the last time I saw you? Do you think I need to get tested for TB? And then second she said – if you die from consumption, at least you will be signing a beautiful song in wonderful lighting like in Moulin Rouge (Nicole Kidman) or Les Miserable (Fantine).

This turned out to be negative. It pretty much disappeared by the 48 hour read time.

Thursday night was BTSN for Vince. Jeremy was at a meeting downtown. This is his favorite teacher who teaches him math. (I forgot her name). Everyone spent their ten minutes talking about their test scores. We score awesome on all the AP testing. We are prepping for the AP test. They are totally going to be prepared. They will be prepared for college. No one talked about how beautiful science and math can be. I didn’t even need for them to say how beautiful science is, maybe I just wanted a list of what they were going to learn in science/math? Not that intro calculus or chemistry changes that much in 30 years. But still. Come on people, I love a good test score, but I also love chemistry. It’s fall of senior year for Vince. I will miss going to back to school night next year. I hope I’m doing right by him. I have my doubts.

Here’s the list: Carnegie Mellon, Haverford, UMd – College Park, U Wisconsin (Madison), U of Oregon (Eugene), U of Washington (Seattle), UC (Irvine, Davis, Santa Cruz), Cal Poly SLO, Pitt, Drexel, U Toronto, U British Columbia, Rutgers. He wants to apply to the engineering schools and he’s an engaged and motivated student. I’m sure all his teachers enjoy having him in their classes, he participates a lot and isn’t afraid to say his ideas and he loves group work (mostly. He still gets frustrated by the one person who doesn’t pull their own weight and never answers the group texts). He likes to think about concepts and understand them, but he is indifferent to acing the tests which, I will admit, is infuriating to me. So a common (but weird) scenario is that he’s tutoring other kids to better grades than he is getting himself. WTF? How is that even possible? He’s gotten a lot of Bs in math/science classes (which are hard classes, but not the hardest at our magnet school which he turned down the offer to take) and then his test scores are a bit on the low end, slightly lower than expected for the level of classes he’s taking and then on top of that, one has to subtract 100 to 150 points for being Asian (if he says he’s Asian, if he says he’s not Asian, it just hurts my feelings to which Jeremy and Vince are both surprised at my hurt feelings) so that’s a bummer. I’m not sure how being out state plays in whether it’s an advantage or not. We’ll see! I think this is a reasonable list. I didn’t do any of the things I’m supposed to do. I didn’t pay for SAT prep (goes without saying that I didn’t pay $15,000 to do SAT cheating). I didn’t get his slight dyslexia (so much trouble spelling. like the word “turkey”) formally diagnosed so that he’d get extra time on all his tests. I’m not going to pay for a college coach. I didn’t get him diagnosed with ADHD and put him on Adderall which now I’ve come to realize is a common thing. I didn’t hound him on all his homework. He says he’s not cheating – not participating in the legions of group chats in which the kids text each other about what’s on the exams. So I’ll take the Bs and the lower SAT scores and figure it out from there.

I biked there because parking was going to be terrible at the school and then I met up with Jeremy who ended up back at the Rockville station at the same time BTSN ended. We snuck off and had an ice cream date.

Vince debriefing us on his teachers when I got home from BTSN.

Julia, bolt, tacos.

Julia stayed at our house last night. She has been traveling since June on a road trip from LA staying with friends along the way. I hope someday I can do a leisurely road trip across America seeing good friends along the way. I came home after dinner, tired from a shift at the hospital. It was my 2nd shift in a row and even though I thought the day was entirely manageable (challenging, but manageable), I could feel my mental acuity drop the 2nd half of the day. I haven’t yet recovered from it – I slept poorly last night.

Edda’s wheelchair is slightly broken. I need to replace a sheared bolt.

We are hosting dinners this week – neighbors all around. Tuesday taco night!

Juice pouch vs beer, Costco,

Vince hosted a party on Friday night. Jeremy hosted a party on Saturday night. Vince’s party was non-alcoholic. Jeremy’s was kind of alcohol centered.

Juice boxes.

But this meant that when Vince was having his party, we had to leave all the beer in the car because it just seemed weird to be bringing in cases of beer into a teenager-y party. So we didn’t bring the beer into the house on Saturday morning.


Jeremy’s 51st birthday was on Saturday. We celebrated by going to Costco and spending about $800. New glasses for Jeremy. Loading up on supplies for Edda’s classroom (kleenex, clorox wipes, paper towels) and party supplies and the week’s grocery shopping. I’m hoping these glasses will solve all 40% of my marital problems since about 40% of my conversations with Jeremy are about how bad his eyes are and how all 4 pairs of glasses are inadequate in some way and he can’t read anything.

So much Costco.

Jeremy hosted a “fun”draiser for our friend Cindy who is running for Rockville City Council on Saturday night. It’s nice to host a party because the house gets scrubbed down to be presentable (Vince didn’t scrubbed down the house for his party.)

Stump speech!
Our living room.

Sunday night dinner birthday cake for Jeremy. I missed this! 🙁 Trust me, we do have an anniversary/birthday celebration planned that is more involved that Costco and trips to the diner.


Senior year, bruised knees, almost birthday.

Exciting and stressful first week of senior year. As I write this, Vince is hosting a party downstairs. I’m not quite sure what is going on, all I know is that they are doing Shabbat with Arizona ice tea and Maxi is trying to eat all the popcorn. As for the first week regarding non-party stuff – Was there crying (both on the son side and the mom side)? Yes. Was there feeling like a failure (both on the son side and the mom side)? Yes. So, it’s all going as expected. But Vince also decided to join the BOMS team (the boy pom team) so I got to see him dance (at the house, by himself) to Fergalicious and that was hilarious. We also watched Pitch Perfect 2 together which is surprisingly and unexpectedly really racist for such a recent film.


Edda fell on the first day of school. Pretty hard. She was sitting in a chair and then shifted her weight quickly and ended up on the floor on her knees and her face. When I got the email mid-day – you get that welling up of tears starting from the back of your throat and then to the back of your eyes and then you’re almost crying – I couldn’t really bear to answer it, Jeremy answered it for us. I was like – why didn’t they seat belt her into the chair, they know sometimes she tries to stand up unsteadily. Well, that was answered on Back to School Night when the teachers apologetically explained that her chair actually has a seat belt, but they can’t use it because technically, it’s a restraint and you can’t restrain a student. I groaned and understood – there are lots of rules about restraints at the hospital. I asked if I could sign something to OK the use of a seat belt. We’ll try to figure it out. So we have bruised knees. We did go to BTSN on Thursday for Edda. A mini-date of sorts, we biked to the school together because I knew the lot and the surrounding neighborhood was going to be full and it would take just as much time to park half a mile away and walk compared to just biking and parking by the front door. The whole time I told Jeremy he was not to make fun about how slow I was going, but he said I wasn’t too slow and then we went to eat ice cream. We wore the crazy reflective vests and all the bike lights. It was really fun, we rarely get to to that kind of stuff together.

The knee looks worse than this today.
Do you see the slight bruise on her nose? Maybe fat lip too.

I’m holding $15,000 worth of medication in my hand. My poor pal. There’s been helping out & shuttling to downtown medical appointments this week.

Fingers crossed it works for a long time.

Jeremy’s birthday is tomorrow. His work celebrated today.

Lemon raspberry.

Wedding anniversary & first day of school.

Sunday we went out to lunch to celebrate our wedding anniversary. We wanted to go a brand new lunch place in Rockville Town Center, but we got there right after 12:15 pm and the place was full and there was a line. As it was the very first public lunch they were serving and no one had their food yet, I thought it best to go elsewhere and we ended up at the Woodside Deli which was fine, but not my favorite. Somehow I had hoped it would be a little more festive than a bacon, egg, spinach & cheese breakfast sandwich, but it was fine. I think it was more our moods than the place. Jeremy had come in at dinner time on Sat and I was working at the hospital on Labor Day, so Sunday was all we got.

Waiting for diner food.
Excited Edda.

I worked Labor Day at the hospital. It was nice, quiet-ish.

Day after Labor Day, the kids went off to school. Vince via bike.

Edda via bus.

Vince is excited to be a senior. Got senior bagel breakfast on the first day and his senior class shirt.

I want so much for this to be a good year for him with a smooth transition to college. We are working on it.

Since Vince is the scout leader, he has to go to all the extra events and show up early and leave late. It’s extra time.

Scout dodge ball.

Fabio, melancholy, almost home.

Let’s start this post with Vince’s senior picture. We texted this to my parents and even my mother fell over laughing while we were Facetiming. Vince said jokingly, even my grandmother is mocking me! I love this photo. Like really love it. A mix of Maui from Moana (I hate the chicken character – does anyone else on the internet feel like they are making fun of disabled people/chickens? No, not a peep. Intellectually disabled people are the last kind of people you can still make fun of apparently.) and Fabio.

I am melancholy this week, I think it’s mostly that Jeremy isn’t here and I haven’t had much time to myself. I’ve been hanging out with Edda during the days which is fine, but doesn’t lend itself to a lot of work which is helpful for not sitting around and brooding. Historically, I love this time of year, I love the start of school, but no one else around here loves school as much as I love school and this is Vince’s last year of regular school so that makes me sentimental and nostalgic. And I can also get a little teary thinking about Edda. It’s been so many years since we’ve started special schools for her that I think I should be over it. And mostly I’m over it and hold onto happiness for Edda because she’s doing great, but you know. One wishes it was different for her.

We had one trip to the mall to buy some clothes for Vince.

And tried on eyeglasses. Vince did not choose these eyeglasses. I think these are perfect for Jeremy tho.

It was a beautiful week, Edda and I spent a lot of it outside doing yard work. I mulched a bunch of areas I hadn’t touched in two years. I avoided the area which seemed to harbor a family of bees. I’ll tackle that when the temperature drops.

I gave Edda the sassy Dora haircut this morning. I offered it to Vince as well, but he turned me down.

Jeremy’s photos also automatically upload to our shared google photos. He’s not home yet, but here are some photos. I mostly don’t know what is going on in these photos. The theme is corn. bike. dogs. This is a business trip! Where are the photos of powerpoint slides? or travel delays? or roller/spinner luggage? ha ha.

Dog, SUX.

I’m back from two days from the hospital – tired and worn out and facing the last week of summer with a distinct lack of childcare during normal business hours. On the way home yesterday, Jeremy texted to me this photo of this completely adorable dog that showed up at the house. I was like – OMG! This is a sign from the gods that this is our new dog. As if a little poofy dog with a flower pinned to her ear is clearly un-owned and un-wanted. The dog was claimed and returned and we are still only a one-dog family.

Not our dog.

I had a patient who had some bowel surgery and had been in the hospital for a while and I was discharging them. When one has bowel surgery, afterwards, you start out not eating anything, then advance to clear liquids (jello, broth), then go to full liquids (cream of wheat?) and then to GI soft and finally to regular food. I was discharging this person to go home as they were nicely progressing up the meal hierarchy and as I walked into the room, they said – I just had the most amazing poop of my life. Do you know how long it’s been since I’ve pooped well? Forever. Literally forever. I wasn’t pooping well for ages before the surgery and now it’s been like 4 a days since the surgery. Can I tell you all about my poop? I said- it’s pretty much my job to listen to the status of your pooping, go on right ahead. And happily they proceeded to tell me, in great detail, all about it. Ha ha, that was nice. Don’t take good bowel function for granted. I keep thinking that the hospital work would get easier, but it’s not true. As you know more, there is actually more to do. Because once you know enough, you call the docs to fix wrong orders or to suggest courses of action or you see potential problems down the road and can see ways to prevent those problems.

I got home on Monday night and found Jeremy packing for his trip to Sioux City. He asked me if I’d be willing to give him a ride at 5 am in case he couldn’t get a Lyft. I said sure, but as the conversation continued, it became clear that he was anxious about the whole check-in procedure because he’s bringing his bike. Through careful internet research, he’s found a way to check a bike in as regular luggage which is about $30. But if they check it in as a bike it’s $150. He was willing to pay $30 and unwilling to pay $150, but if he took a Lyft and they were going to charge him $150, he’d be stuck at the airport with his bike and a Lyft ride to go home. I said, don’t worry about it, just check it for $150, it’ll still be cheaper than a bike rental. He said – I’ll just feel stupid paying $150. So then I offered to drive him to the airport to solve this problem. [He is generally anxious about this trip for various reasons, so I didn’t want this stupid bike check-in to take up any extra anxiety points in his life.] [[This is such a boring story.]] Then we told Vince that we were going to leave a sleeping Edda with (a sleeping) him for a few hours in the morning and that if he needed to flee the house, to please remember to bring Edda with him because we would not be home. Vince said OK, I’ll bring Edda outside and set her down next to the tree in the front yard. And then I told him to help Edda before helping Maxi and then Jeremy said that Max can take care of herself, just keep the door open.

With his bike. Whoops, I mean luggage to be checked.
Sioux city gets to be SUX.
My love note from J as he boards.

Subject SAT, Taylor, ramen.

Gorgeous day today, the summer heat/humidity was getting me down, but today! today! all the windows were opened in the house. A delight! Jeremy drove Vince to an SAT subject test location (far-ish away) and planned on biking home, leaving Vince the car to drive home when he was done. It’s nerve wracking getting there early and on time and Vince is still not comfortable enough to go on the highway by himself, but on the way home, Vince took the side roads (two lane country roads) and had the windows open and music blasting. Classic.

My husband looking ridiculous.

Edda and I spent the morning together in our pajamas listening to the new Taylor Swift album and folding laundry. I’m constantly sweating these days. I wake up, I need a shower. I have lunch, I need a shower. I’m about to go to bed, I need yet another shower. I used to have PJs that I would wear all week, but now I could literally change them every three hours and that would be OK. Taylor did good. I like the new album.

Edda watching TV waiting for me to get her day started.
Scenes from a bike ride.

We went to ramen for lunch to celebrate. We talked about Jeremy’s upcoming trip to Nebraska. (It’s actually Nebraska and Iowa. Both!) (It doesn’t matter where he goes on business, Jeremy (while he is actually away) has to tell me that it is very important and that he is getting a tremendous amount of work/networking/saving-the-world done even if none of it is true and he is basically sitting around drinking beer with colleagues from DC in Nebraska because of scheduling/out-of-their control snafus. Only after he gets home can he actually tell me what really happened.) I said to Jeremy that I’m going to totally call him crying next week. And he says – I know, you are going to call crying asking why you have to do all the things and why I have to travel all the time and that you and Vince are fighting. And then we look over at Vince and Vince says – why are you looking at me? I actually have to do the fighting with mom. And then we all look at Edda and tell her that she’s in charge and has to referee all next week.

Ramen to celebrate.

Grouchy & passports.

I’m still out of sorts. I often feel great at night and optimistic that the next day will be fantastic, but each day I’m tired, need a nap and can’t concentrate. I was extra grouchy today, but I warned everyone that I was grouchy so then everyone was teasing me about being grumpy and then they even sent Edda (with a nudge on her backside aiming her in my direction) with the directive to – go and annoy your already annoyed mom.

Vince driving me to the auto repair shop to pick up the van.

Passport renewal today at the post office for the kids. I was a little nervous because for about two months there, I was the only one able to flee this country as a moments notice. I would have to leave everyone here and just save myself.

Edda loves applying for passports.