Stress in work and school Ghost Writer comes · March 2014

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This March finds the Gayheart family healthy and trudging on in life.

We said goodbye to our pseudo-foster-child Colby this January when his mother’s father bought a house in SE Portland, and he and his mother were able to move in. We enjoyed having him here but we’re glad he can be with his mother again. We haven’t seen him much since he left because they’re so far away, but we hope to have him over for Spring Break.

Holden is still in Yachats, OR doing well at Job Corps. His percentage of knowledge in automotive mechanics keeps rising, and he tells me this with pride in his voice. He lost his phone charger and so hasn’t been in contact with us much, but once we have the money we will have him come for a weekend. I am still very grateful that this chance came up for him last year, and that he’s able to begin living his dream. I can hardly believe my first boy will be 18 this year. He was happy to find out that his girlfriend here did NOT break up with him by text – that it was her evil foster sister who’d gotten hold of her phone. I don’t know if we’ll see him much when he visits. I’m not concerned about this girl, he seems to really like her despite the limits she puts on their physical relationship.

Jaben is as active as ever, with issues at school about not wanting to do the work a lot of the time. I suppose that’s usual 12-yr-old stuff. He still skateboards and spends time on “his” phone, (supposed to be shared with Edgar), and exhibits the attitude of having his own life away from his little brother by choosing to take the bus instead of walk with Edgar to school, or to go on a bike ride instead of play basketball with him. At a meeting today with his teachers we were told that he had passed a note to someone asking them to ask someone else out for him, hence the distractions from classwork. We want to do something to help him, but I have a feeling it’s just something he’s going to go through and hopefully he’ll catch-on to some academics along the way. He’ll just have to keep his phone out of his room at night, and show us that he’s reading what he should so he can be rewarded with a trip to a skate park on weekends. We are proud of the little man he’s becoming.

Edgar is still his curious, imaginative self. His teacher has not been emailing me about his lack of participation any more, though his last progress report indicated that he was talking too much in class and not getting classwork done. This was a big issue in January/February with meetings with Mr. J to discuss why Edgar seems to not want to participate. Edgar seems oblivious to what Mr. J is noticing. Lately, with no correspondence from the teacher, I hope Edgar’s grades are improving. When he talks about school, as usual it’s about who is second-fastest runner in his class and in the school. I don’t have to ask who’s the fastest. At Ockley Green track is only for middle-schoolers, so next year in *gulp* SIXTH grade, Edgar can join and start making a name for himself on the track team. Otherwise his passions have been for the League of Extraordinary Dancers (tv show), ghost stories, and Medieval warfare and weaponry which, we’ve decided, is due to his past life as an Ancient Roman soldier.

Dustin is still at his foster home in Beaverton, coming over every-other weekend pending his schedule with school dances and any behavior patterns that need addressing. He is generally happy and tells me about new friends frequently. He still likes his foster family and talks to his mother each week. He went to visit her finally in January, and we’re relieved that he was able to connect with her again. He’s in school to learn living skills, and still talks about becoming either a doctor or a massage therapist. I’m so happy to hear him planning his future.

Bo has been scrambling to find work, and has been barely doing so. He’s stressing about not being able to count on future earnings, so he’s looking into regular wage jobs. He has been trying to get a job at Lowe’s hardware, and now he’s heard that there are positions at Swift where our friend Sam repairs large trucks. I hope that one way or another he finds something fulfilling and dependable so that he can feel he’s doing everything he can.

I’ve been running my usual schedule now for a few weeks after an odd change to a midnight shift for a week-and-a-half in January, and then taking a week vacation in February. I’m still also cleaning houses, and now that my book is joined into one I am editing (and finding embarrassing mistakes) for a final publication. I was recently given a very thoughtful gift by a friend from the Oregonian (where the Eidolon in my book cleans her restroom). Richard has been helpful and kind from the beginning of my writing endeavors, and I made a character fashioned after him in the third book of my series. This week he sent me a very fancy and special Cross ballpoint pen engraved with my name and the words “Ghost Writer,” (because, in case you didn’t know, Eidolon is another word for Ghost). He said it was a late birthday gift, and means for me to use it for autographs when my book breaks out and becomes famous. I feel like a complete writer now.

You are dear to me, so I hope that this spring lifts your spirits and helps to guide your way forward. May you find health and enjoy the coming spring.

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