Rose has definitely entered the pre-teen/teen years. She spends a lot of time computer chatting and socializing with friends. She has her own cell phone and knows how to use it. She dyed her hair red. (I dyed it for her the first time) Then, she cut it short like her favorite Manga character Gaara. It is an extremely cute look. She reads voraciously, especially enjoying coming-of-age, vampire, and Manga books. She gets good grades in school and plays viola well, all seemingly with little effort. She doesn’t take me too seriously. She knows what she wants and is not shy about it. One consequence of her determination is that I’ve had to abandon my vision of her skiing with me. Actually, I still have the vision, just not the reality. She just doesn’t like skiing… Oh well… She is absolutely passionate about fencing.
Christopher continues to find projects for his laser-like focus. He learned about a Manga show called Naruto from Rose and knows every aspect of its epic and intricate plot. He loves playing computer games. He has also recently discovered rock music and downloads favorites and makes CD’s. He learns about new rock groups from Rose and her friends. He is particularly fond of The Rasmus and The Used. He also gets good grades in school and is taking an after-school Japanese language class. He goes to the same fencing club as Rose. He takes piano lessons and has an amazing ear for music. He’ll probably ski with me.
I have had a startlingly dynamic year and a half. Getting divorced, being single, moving, buying a new house, furnishing a new house, learning how to shop for my own clothes, learning how to organize my own food preparation, dealing with a rat infestation in the new house, dealing with major instabilities at work which could have necessitated looking for a new job but ended up OK, and facing increased workload to address my post-divorce financial situation are among my many issues. I have realized that I just love being around people and that I had used my built-in family situation to fulfill that need. As a result, I had not built up a large number of intimate friends in Seattle. I’ve also realized that I yearn to re-experience romance and have therefore re-entered the world of “dating.” Cowabunga !
I think the children are doing very well. I see that Rose and Christopher feel loved by Rachel and me and that they have had minimal disruptions to their routines. They live with Rachel in the same house. I live a block away in a new house. They spend every other weekend and a weeknight with me. I feel more appreciative of them than ever.
I’ve also found joy in continuing my old hobbies and taking up some new ones. I found an incredible ski school last winter and made major improvements. After a long pause, I re-started Italian classes and I continue to read most books in Italian. My new/old hobby is piano. I take lessons (after a 30 year hiatus) from Christopher’s piano teacher. I bought myself a piano and have been enjoying working on jazz and classical music.
I have delved more deeply into The Work by Byron Katie, a system for improving well-being. I went to three 10 day retreats in a year period and am in the facilitator-certification-program. I believe that The Work is the most important thing I have ever done. I also started going to a wonderful church called the Center for Spiritual Living. I am at home there.
I look forward to communicating more with you over the course of time. I have appreciated your support and open-mindedness. Thank you and Happy Holidays.