The Latest Stories from the Zoo

These past few weeks have been hectic and crazy but a lot of fun too. I am so glad and relieved that April is over and now I can look forward to warmer temperatures, a somewhat back to normal routine and summer vacation for the kids.

A lot has happened here at the Talbert Zoo.  We went on a family vacation to Arizona and soaked up the heat and sunshine. We visited the Grand Canyon and the Painted Dessert.

The following weekend we had a quiet Easter celebration with the five kids. They went on an Easter egg hunt in our back yard and dressed up for Easter Sunday mass.

The next weekend Parrot had his Cub Scouts Blue and Gold dinner and Grandma and Grandpa Talbert, Uncle Josh, Aunt Nikki and their cousins visited.   Monkey and Kitty had their first soccer game of the season on that Saturday. And Goose went to prom.

Last weekend my parents came out for a visit to help celebrate Kitty’s First Holy Communion and Confirmation.  We had cake and pizza on Sunday and Monday night was the mass with the Bishop. My parents left early Tuesday morning.

During this crazy, busy, hectic month Chris has been interviewing for a new position with his company.  I feel the need to step away from my life and try to picture what he is going through.  This is my attempt at explaining what is going on in his perspective.

He has been with his company for five years and started out with a small office job.  We were still living in Sacramento at the time.  He didn’t get paid very well for that first position but he loves the company that he is working for.  After a year he was able to apply for a different position.  It just so happened that an opening in sales came up in Spokane.  He knew that I hated living in California and this would be an opportunity to relocate the family to a smaller, less crowded community with better schools. In 2010, just a few months shy of Bear’s birth, we moved to Spokane, Washington.

Chris’s whole life centers around his job.  He is a hard worker and his career is his identity.  He had the first sales job for three years.  But he knew he needed to advance his career further.  Another sales position opened up last year.  This position required him to travel even more and the territory expanded over several states.  Of course, hard working, dedicated Chris got the job.

Today he is gone from Tuesday through Thursday every week.  The kids miss him a lot and Monkey acts out in anger when his dad is gone for an extended period of time.  But Chris loves his job and he is good at it.  I love my husband and am going to continue to support him no matter how stressful life at home becomes for me. But he has told me that when he is away from the kids sometimes he feels guilty.

We promised Goose that we would stay here until she graduated high-school, but we may not be able to keep that promise.  Chris thinks that his company is going to make changes and he thinks he needs to get out of sales. Recently a job in a different department which he is also qualified for opened up.  But the job is located in Chicago.

He has had several phone interviews already and is going to meet up with the director and Vice President of that division next week.  It sounds very promising, but I have mixed feelings about moving.

When we located to the west coast from Wisconsin, where I grew up, Chris promised that the move would be temporary and eventually we would move back to the mid west and that would be where we will raise our children.  That was six years ago.  I have been so anxious and impatient.  I hate living this far away from my parents, brothers and friends.

As a stay at home mom it is so hard to make friends.  I’ll admit I do not have any good friends out here in Spokane, nor did I make any friends when we lived in Sacramento.  I don’t have a support network like I did back in Wisconsin.  It sucks when Chris is away every week.  He is my only adult conversation.  I miss home and want to go back.

But, I have five beautiful children that call Spokane home.  They attend a beautiful brand new elementary school just down the street.  My son with Asperger’s has seven people on staff that work with him every single day.  His educational needs are being met and it brings tears to my eyes when I think about it.

Monkey is involved in sports through the parks and recreation department here.  The practices and games are not very far from our home and the cost is very affordable.  He is having a blast.

Kitty is friends with nearly every little girl in our neighborhood.  She is very well liked at school and often has play dates at our home.

After several years, my daughter with Asperger’s, Goose, finally has found her place at her high-school.  It takes her longer than normal to make friends due to her social anxiety and awkwardness. She had a great time at prom this year and a nice group of kids invited her to join them.

My girls are getting the help they need at a nice behavioral health clinic in downtown Spokane.  They have been seeing their therapists for a long time and have established a great relationship with the clinic.

This is the only home Bear has ever known.

But, I hate the climate here in Spokane and I don’t have a support system.  Am I being too selfish about this whole thing?  When I think about my needs I feel so guilty because my kids love it here.  I guess I just need to leave it up to the Lord. He knows what is best for Chris and us.

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