Spring break has come and gone and summer is almost over. I finished the spring semester, all 20.5 units, with my first C on my college record. Caleb and I gave our 45-day notice to vacate our residence in Imperial Beach for the second time, having lived there once before, and having to threaten the company with BBB, a lawyer, and police when we wanted something fixed.
In April, I began to donate the dog’s things (bowls, leashes, beds, floaties, toys, meds, etc.) as I couldn’t stand the thought of throwing them away, even if they included a half-chewed bone and a gutless purple monkey. I kept Sparky’s turtle and touch its dirty edges as a tiny reminder of the lives I had to let go and all the memories we shared. I will always remember how awesome they were.
I continue to get rid of things that I have carried around for too long. I made the decision not to have kids, so toting around my baby clothes because Mom wanted me to pass onto my children the toys and clothes from my childhood that she wasn’t able to give to me from hers is no longer an option. I will exchange their space for things I can use, like dive weights that hold water instead of the less colorful ones that don’t so that the teal and blue will make me smile as it reminds me of the sea.
We (the boss, another employee, and I) got a new girl, Darrien, on the work team and she focuses on teaching the kids yoga and mindfulness. We put the students in small groups and ask them an open-ended question to discuss with their peers, particularly people they might not otherwise talk to.
Darrien would move on to other things before the school year was out and the principal let us know that our services weren’t needed for the last two weeks in the first half of June, so summer came early. I used this time to petition attendance to a half-credit class (meaning using my other classes already taken to not take that one) so I could focus on the last nine units needed to get my Kinesiology degree — Chemistry 200 and Physiology. I also petitioned that my 100+ units already attained not count against my scheduled enrollment time so that I would get first pick at the new campus, the only one that offered the chemistry class I needed, at Mesa campus; a further commute north.
May would start with a flat on the car and since I was going to be late to work anyway I took the day off so Caleb and I could get new tires on both vehicles that will be making cross country trips over the summer, just not in the order we thought. The Tribute would get into a few accidents before our trip and end up in the shop after being t-boned by a drunk driver who hit Caleb in an intersection.
I got rid of Sparky’s baby teeth. Yes, I had kept them for 11 years in a little container with orange fish on it as I somehow managed to capture one of each type that wasn’t lost to him swallowing it. The movers arrived at the end of May to pack most of our stuff into storage for the last few years of Caleb’s career while we make some major transitions, and the other movers showed up two days later for boxes destined to Bahrain. I moved in next door so that I can finish school while Caleb goes to Virginia for months of engineer related training before joining the boxes on the return to the Island of Sand.
The new tenants, grandma with her son and grandson, in our old address are busy covering the gopher damage with new bricks and potted succulents while the property manager kept $500 of our safety deposit to fix a window blind that the maid service broke and to manage the weeds (dirt) that we left behind. I want to feel bitter, but the cheaper rent was a great deal for us financially. Caleb and I spent the last weekend in San Diego together on his friend Josh’s new pontoon boat, complete with trembling chihuahua and other couples and their kids.
Caleb would have his collars pinned, by me, as a Senior Chief (almost put his anchor on upside down) on the day we leave San Diego to drive across the country, something we’ve done many times together before and a place we always find solace from the chaos of life; though the long hours on the highway weren’t the relaxation I was going for we had a deadline to meet to get Caleb checked in on time so I could fly back to San Diego on Sunday and start school on Monday.
We made a massive detour, rushing down the west coast of Florida and speeding up the east side to dive and the only thing that got lost in the mix (or that wasn’t on my wrist when it should’ve been) was my dive watch when we arrived in Key Largo ready to get deep and wet. This would take up a majority of our two weeks on the road and we got to see a lot of new things along the way (that’s in another post).
My return to San Diego has me getting up before 6 am and getting to school before 7 am where I stay in classes with back-to-back labs in the middle of the day until 7 pm to drive the 30 minutes home while talking with Caleb so I can pack meals for the next day, shower if needed, and get homework done before getting some sleep. I spend my weekends at the kitchen bar getting fed occasionally and partaking in late-night snacks that keep me up and going.
During July there was the obvious 4th of July holiday, Pride weekend, and Comic-Con. I found time to walk down to the beach for the fireworks — a first after having lived here for probably five years of them. I made time to say hi to house guests — Emma the 8-year-old and Jarod 18 who were both nice, but Danielle the 50+-year-old watching Housewives of Boredom and crying about how she’d kill herself if she had the homework I did wasn’t helpful — and of course I forgot I have headphones to drown out those noises.
I also made time to take Uncle Ed to dinner for tacos at Salud!, schwarma at The Kebab Shop, and a Mandarin place because the buffet looked closed in the same shopping plaza. He was in town for a long week of work and staying along my route between home and school so I got to listen to him play his cigar box guitar while he found questions to ask about chemistry to add to our discussions. I appreciate his curiosity in my education even if I won’t be a chemist as I’m currently making a B in round two of the class.
I aced Physiology in six weeks though and enjoyed theorizing with my professor about the possibilities of the body to go wrong when so much is running smoothly every millisecond that we don’t have to think about. I was able to spend the day finishing a 200-page novel and yesterday I mailed my rental physiology book back, mailed Uncle Ed his laptop that he’d left behind, had my new lease notarized, dropped some things to Goodwill, and got a long green dress in the mail from Caleb who looks forward to seeing me in it when I visit in August.
I emailed the school to let them know how I was wrongly enrolled for a general education plan when they had my transcripts delivered and checked over so I could transfer a business degree and go to SDSU. I’m glad I made the switch though to a degree in a field that makes me happy and that I can pursue, and so my path has changed into the direction it needed to go. I take another step forward.