Tuesday, February 23, 2016


As should be expected, work continues. I will be giving a tutorial tonight, which I expect to go well; the tutee is a good one, and the subject matter involved is agreeable to both of us. Also, a freelance order came in yesterday; I will need to purchase the book for it and begin to read so that I can do the write-up and hopefully pull in some money therefrom. I certainly need it; bills continue to filter in, and although I am getting them paid, their timing is not aligned well to my flow of income. I have less cushion than I would prefer, and it vexes me. I am trying to build up a bit more padding so that I can move ahead with a bit more confidence into the ultimately uncertain circumstances I face and that my family necessarily faces with me. Problematic as it is, the household finances depend upon my efforts almost entirely; the Mrs. works and earns, to be sure, but only one part to my three or four. It is not right, necessarily, but it is as it is, and so I am glad that work continues.

As far as the family goes: Things are returning to their slim semblance of normalcy after the weekend's birthday celebrations. Ms. 8 has been enjoying the gifts given to her by family and friends, exulting in having art supplies and another doll, and enjoying having a new setup for her bedroom. The Mrs. and I bought and set up a bin organizer for her, one that keeps many of her toys off of the ground yet still accessible to her; Ms. 8 gets to play easily, and she does reasonably well at putting things away when she is reminded to do so. At two, she does still need to be reminded, but that is hardly unexpected. (Nor are the occasional tantrums at being denied her wishes to go with her mother to work or at being rebuked for upending juice boxes and water bottles on floors just cleaned.) She remains a delight, and I hope to be able to help her remain so (while still helping her to have what she needs to be able to make her way and not be bound by oppressive gender norms).

I worry about such things, of course. I do not want Ms. 8 to have the same kinds of social problems I did; my mouth got me into quite a bit of trouble, and my inclination towards solitude and quiet has made some professional things more difficult for me than they would otherwise be. The latter does not seem to be a problem for the girl; she is quite outgoing. But the former may yet be. At the same time, I do not want her to feel forced into conformity; I do not want her to grow into the kind of person who cannot conceive of things outside the norm as valuable and desirable instead of shameful for the simple reason of otherness. (There are things outside the norm that should be shameful, of course, but they are shameful because shameful, not because other.) I am not well equipped to help her in such a way, however, and it worries me. It is part of why I work; perhaps by doing so, I can provide her with what she needs to be who she ultimately is.

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