Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The State, Anger Management Revisited, and Family

I just learned from the state that I will have to enroll one of our kids into the homeschooling program. My understanding is that by the time they're six, they need to be enrolled, so even they turn six after the beginning of the school year, that does not exempt them. Good to know. Just wanted to give a quick nod to the people at the homeschool office in Montpelier, they have the enormous task of sifting through all the homeschool paperwork and answering to militant moms and dads all over the state, and in my opinion, they do a great job, even if as adults we don't like having our hands held. The reality is, some of us (myself included), need it.

So, one more curriculum to develop, but such is life.

I was talking to my wife about the whole anger management thing, and we came upon a common theme with something she's interested in-Eastern philosophy. Now I know this is a stretch, but I've fond what helps me keep my cool and not get so worked up over small, trivial things being aware of everything I'm doing, and in a strange and corny way, every moment that I encounter. Now I know this sounds crazy, because you can't be aware of your every waking moment (or can you?), but I have found (I know I've said this before) that anger surprises me.

It boils up from unexpected events, and they are usually not worth the angst. I've found that by keeping your mind clear and sharp, being in the moment, if you will, that I can actually walk myself through a dilemma, and not totally lose it. It does make life more pleasant, for me and everyone around me.

I even came up with a name for it-Hyper-Conscious Awareness. It's all too easy to shut your brain down and run on auto pilot, and it's probably a necessary thing in our busy and crazy lives. But I've found if I just take more time to think things through and be aware of what can happen, I'm less prone to unpleasant surprises, bearing in mind that they are going to happen whether or not I want them to. I am experiencing this firsthand. The usual things that set me off are not. I know this because I can feel that familiar percolation of chagrin when things don't go according to plan, and as every parent knows, nothing ever goes according to plan.

I've got a long way to go on this one, but at least I feel confident that I'm pointed in the right direction. Even my kids tell me that I make an ass of myself much less frequently (not in those words, of course), and that's what it's all about, in the end.

In closing, just wanted to mention that my mom and my brother BOTH have blown off our kid's birthday, for reasons that I won't go into here. Suffice it to say, I'm disappointed but won't dwell on it.

Until the next time, thanks for reading.

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