Mom was very sick last night. She was up several times. She has lost so much weight and is down to 154lbs. I did get her to TJ Maxx yesterday and bought her two pairs of new jeans. They are in the dryer right now and I will hem them when they are dry. Her bras are hanging on her so I pulled out the very expensive bras I was going to return to a store that had sent me the wrong size. With a bra extender they fit great. I am tired as my sleep is being interrupted. I don't dare go in a sleep with hubby because I am getting up to much and he has to drive an hour on really bad roads to get to work. I can't have him sleep deprived. Mom just calls out to much. Now the bathroom is a disgusting mess. I won't go into the details. She is in the shower right now. I just start the shower and tell her to get in it. Sissie this seems to work. Anyway....
We had a good day yesterday, I really got a lot done in the shop and Mom made two Swedish almond cakes for her bazaar and also got her pies wrapped and frozen. She was able to get one receiving blanket done. Today she wants to bake a couple more almond cakes. She naps in between everything she does. Just like a baby. I know Mom is much like me, she wants to get things done or accomplished. It makes her feel useful. I don't think she can get anything done at home because of the chaos and mess.
My phone has been ringing none stop and I have plenty to do in the shop today, had over $100.00 worth of work come in yesterday. Mom wears a cell phone on a lanyard around her neck. Usually she tucks it into her clothes. Well when she was doing dishes last night she let her phone drop into the water and she killed it. I put it in a bag of brown rice all night and it powered up this morning. I have it on a charger right now so we will see if that trick works. Other than that we will be switching out her phone. I have an old phone here she can use. It is always something. I just keep smiling.
I always swore up and down I would never open a studio of my own. I have often thought of that and wondered why I did it in the first place and at my age and with my health. What was I thinking? Was I thinking? What I did not realize is that the new director of the University who acted like such a ditz was a very vindictive person. She really thought I was bluffing when I told her I was leaving. She actually said to me, "You are bluffing". No one wants to throw that kind of a gauntlet in front of me.
It was November and I had a big Christmas show up at the U of I. I would be taking my dancers on the road for 4 days and I also had a Jr. High Christmas musical. My eldest was getting married February 17th, I had a full blown musical of Oklahoma opening March 3rd and I had a studio to open, plus try to sew to keep money coming in. Let's not even talk about Christmas. The one thing I was very thankful for during this time is that I was so busy because the fallout from the director was so bad I think I would have lost my mind.
I delivered my letters to my parents that I was moving to a new studio right after Thanking. The director was furious. All I had asked for was a $400.00 a month raise. I made the fatal mistake of delivering the letter at the the studio after classes. This was wrong on my part and I fully recognize it. It was like stealing the Rolodex. I don't know why I did it this way, just was not thinking, too busy,but it was done and I could not take it back. I was called before the board and I was smart enough to take an attorney with me. I wrote out a three page letter of my grievances as to why I felt I needed to leave and a list of all the things I was doing for the University without charge. I made copies to be distributed at the meeting. The attorney that I took with me was shocked he assumed the studio was mine. He had been bringing his son to me for Irish dance for years and he only saw me, cleaning, replacing toilet paper, sending out notes, running the shows, and the theaters. He had know idea that I worked for a board. That is what most of the parents thought. These people did not exist to them, they sent their money up the hill to the big rat hole.
The meeting was grueling. WP (Witchie Poo /alias director) kept changing the meeting time. She wanted to get to the board before I came. I had been the right hand man girl Friday for these people for 11 years. I was the golden girl, she had a very short time to destroy that. When we got to the location of the board meting there were many cars there. The attorney told me to stay in the car and then went and felt the hoods of several of the automobiles. He came back and said that the meeting had been in place at least 2 hours. She was in there trashing me. She also had know idea I was bringing an attorney. When she opened the door and saw me her face was full of sweet poison and then she saw Ben. Ben is a short grey haired nice looking cowboy in a long tweed trench coat and cowboy boots, he has a face that would back down a train wreck. She stopped smiling.
As she ushered us in I could see looks of contempt on the faces of all the people who a week before had loved me. It was awful. Ben took charge. He passed out my letters and asked them not to read them now, but later after the meeting when they had time, right now he wanted to know there concerns. Now I had been led to believe that I was going to get a proposal to help me either get the studio or stay with the organization. In reality WP was going to hang me out to dry and watch me writhe. Ben had suspected this I had not. See again how naive. I answered their questions many of my answers were contrary to WP's information. I had worked for these people for so long and I was always known as an honest hard working person that did what I said I would. I had reasons why I did things and I had good justification. WP was not looking very good by the end. I realized my time with this company was truely over and I was devestated and sad. The last question WP was asked is why I had not signed a non compete agreement like the rest of the professional teachers. Well I am not a professional, I don't have a degree in dance, I don't have a Broadway background. What she failed to realize is that those things do not matter in the Arts. Talent and the ability to get things done made all the difference. I was not good enough, I was not to be worried about.
Many harsh and hurtful things were said to me by board members. I would be closed down in a year. I would never be able to keep up with the taxes, and advertizing, etc. I was a flash in the pan. The work would prove too hard and the pay too little. Anything to discourage me. When they were done watching me bleed, we got up to leave. I was angry and ready to give a rude retort, when Ben put his hand on my arm to shush me. He turned to the board and said, "Your studio in Lewiston is going to close and Kim is responsible for that". Kim please look at these people and acknowledge that you are responsible for the closing of the Lewiston school. Kim is the reason your school will close." I was so shocked how could he do this to me. I looked at him like he was from Mars but I turned and said that I was responsible. He then said, " You have threatened to close this studio for the last 5 years by Kim's records, she has kept it open and has classes that pay huge sums to your business (non-profit) with very little coming to her. So if she is going to be hung for a horse thief she might as well have stole the pony. Let's go sister." and he slugged me on the arm. The look on the boards faces was priceless. I had stolen their pony. But not after giving them every opportunity to take care of the pony themselves.
I felt so bad and did not sleep the whole night. I just felt betrayed and I was the betrayer. It was an awful feeling and it would take me years to get over it. However several of the board members called me to apologize. They had know idea I was doing as much as I was and they would certainly have given me a raise. They were sorry to see me go. That was a small comfort. What was especially funny was that the Professional advanced Ballet teacher had taken a Nutcracker contract right after Thanksgiving and had not asked permission (as it would have been denied) and did not show up to teach any of his classes through the rest of December, I was called repeatedly by Witchie Poo to go teach after she had technically fired me. This only allowed me more exposure to the parents and the poor running of the studio. I did not clean or bring in toilet paper, but they were determined to keep it open for the rest of the year. Good luck!
Because Sissie and I had taken on our get out of debt plan by 50 I was able to give our daughter a beautiful Wedding without going into debt. We had it all. Not one thing was charged. I did however call in many favors. When you do as many things as I do non gratis people owe you and are glad to help you. All decorations were given to us and were put up by a stage crew from the High School under the direction of their teacher. Her wedding cake and grooms cake were made by an old director that I had done many ,many pieces of free choreography. (it was a $700.00 cake). The hall was a trade as I had huge studio fans that I do not use in the summer, the hall used them and I was given free rent. I made the dress, the bridesmaids dresses. I alter tuxes for a store in town so the tuxes were free. We mad all the food ahead at the Methodist church and girlfriend who owns a large restaurant and catering company came in to over see the meal. I had made her mother of the bride suit and altered her daughters dress a few years earlier. Oldest has a beautiful voice and could certainly followed her Aunt into Opera, but she chose the law and sang in Jazz choirs all 7 years she was in college. Her choir director loved her. A great voice he could put any where without the drama or theatrics. She just sang what he wanted where he wanted. He put together our band. All were professional jazz players and they traveled in from all over to this small town. We had a drummer that had played on the Johnny Carson show. It was a wonderful wedding in spite of my life being in chaos.
I really must get busy my mother is going to yell at me.
Have a great and productive day.