Throwing Stones

You know how it only takes a small stone to break a window?  Well, sometimes it only takes two sentences to ruin a day.  Confused?  Stay tuned.

Today is the seventh day that Brian’s been out of town.  He won’t be back for four more days, and everybody in the family is feeling the strain.  I’m exhausted, the house is a mess, and Katie has begun throwing Category Five temper tantrums. She’s developed a high-pitched scream that sounds like a steamboat whistle and has been clocked at around 120 decibels (roughly the same level as a sandblaster or a loud rock concert).

So you can imagine my apprehension about taking the children to church today, especially considering that our ward has Sacrament Meeting last.  But I decided to stick it out.  It was the right thing to do.

And know what?  It wasn’t terrible.  It wasn’t fun either, but it was bearable.  We made it all the way to speaker #4 in Sacrament Meeting before I ducked out early.  The kids had begun to squabble over toys, and Katie had started steamboating.  Time to go.

The kids had lasted much longer than I anticipated, so I left feeling rather satisfied and happy with myself, until we rounded the hallway corner.  A portly, balding older man with a cane caught my eye.

“The way your kids scream is awful,” he said.

“Yeah, Katie’s a screamer,” I said with a laugh, thinking he was commiserating about the difficulty of raising a toddler.

“No,” he growled.  “I mean your kids are awful.  Their behavior, the screaming . . .”

He went on and obviously had more to say, but fortunately I had already turned my back and headed down the hall.  The noive!  THE NOIVE!  Did he think I wasn’t aware of my kids’ behavior?  I HAVE LEFT CHURCH EARLY!  OF COURSE I WAS AWARE!  How on EARTH did he think how this going to HELP or CHANGE ANYTHING?


[deep breathing, deep breathing]

I suppose you could say this was kind of the last straw for me.  I was having a happy moment!  He ruined it!

What has happened to the secular LDS culture that makes people think it’s okay to say such judgmental things?  Well . . . I know it’s probably been going on for ages in many LDS communities, but ithappens a lot in this ward.  To me.  I’ve put up with it for four years; to tell the truth, this makes me kind of happy to move away.  (Maybe God sent this on purpose to make me not so sad to leave all the truly wonderful Christlike people around here?)

And I’ll blithely refrain from recounting the many times my kids have been bullied in Primary and Cub Scouts.  It’s another reason why I want to get away, but it’s off-topic.

And to think I had almost skipped church to avoid something like this.  But what would that teach my kids?  That church is only for when it’s convenient?  When it’s easy?  For when you don’t have a kid with autism and a cranky toddler and a husband who’s far away?

How many other people decide to stop coming to church to avoid jerks like this guy?

Okay, rant over.  Peace out.

Job Search

So, the Big Bad Thing I mentioned in a previous post is this: we’re going to have to move.  We thought we were getting a job offer from the University of Utah, but it fell through (through no fault of our own.  It’s a long story and I won’t go over it because I’m still kind of bitter).

The other job contenders: Pittsburgh and Seattle.  I’m leaning towards Seattle.

Yes, yes — I can hear all the Pittsburghers squawking in indignation while wheeling pillowcases full of doorknobs over their heads in a threatening manner.  But hey: I’ve always wanted to live in the Pacific Northwest.  Also: we can drive back to Utah for grandparent visits.

Also: Seattle seems darn cool.  There are four children’s museums in the vicinity, two national parks, two theaters devoted entirely to marionette performances.  (Yes, these are exactly the kind of nerdy things I look for when I rate a city.)

BUT since neither of these places have yet to send Brian and official contract, the stress level is high.  I’m wasting far, far too many hours on Zillow and Trulia, biting my nails over the high cost of real estate in Seattle, and the lousy schools in Pittsburgh.

(Yeah, we’d probably live in Mt. Lebanon.  Go ahead and swing the pillowcases.)

Anyway, it’s been preoccupying my thoughts enough to the point where I can’t write any other posts, not about Eleanor’s ballet class, or Jeffrey’s recycling opera, or what I’m going to refer to as the Harry Potter Ski Adventure.

Well, maybe I will.  But not until after a few more hours on Zillow.

Winter Walk

Here’s what we needed today:

Why?  Because Brian and I have had a very stressful weekend.  One of those curl-into-a-ball-on-the-couch kind of times.  I can’t get into the details right now, but let’s just say that both Jeff and Eleanor were throwing up all day yesterday, and it didn’t even phase us compared to the Big Bad Thing.

I mean, Jeff even threw up in the middle of Sacrament Meeting.

All over the pew.

While I was in the middle of playing prelude music on the organ.

And when someone came up to tell me that Jeff had thrown up, I cried “Holy crap!” a little too loudly, and yanked my hands off the keyboard in the middle of a chord . . .

. . . then noticed that the chapel had become eerily quiet.  Pulling myself together, I shakily stumbled back into the music.

Brian wasn’t there; he had stayed home with Eleanor.  Some amazing church members stepped forward to get Jeff cleaned up while I crawled through the opening hymn, the sacrament hymn, and then the congregational hymn.  At that point, Jeff made a mad dash to the bathroom for a second round of sick.  Praying that the rest of the meetings’ speakers were long-winded, I grabbed both boys, stuffed them in the car, drove them home (“I’ll explain later,” I shouted to Brian,) then dashed back to church.

Fortunately, the speakers were nice and long.  I think it’s the first time I’ve ever been happy about that.

BUT, all that hubbub was nothing, I say nothing compared with the stress from the bad news we got on Friday.

So, a distraction was in order.  TO THE MOUNTAINS!

We went to Wasatch Mountain State Park, home of alpenhorn goodness.

Ostensibly to snowshoe, but it’s been a dry winter so far and there wasn’t enough snow for it.  Instead, we pulled on boots and hit the trail for a snowy walk.

I love William’s winter ensemble here.  Monster hat (present from grandma), stripey scarf (present from other grandma) a size-too-big coat because his regular coat was left at church (see the Grand Spew Incident, above) and big sister’s hand-me-down pink boots.  RAWR!

We saw a bird’s nest, which the park rangers said might belong to a mountain bluebird . . .

. . . and a few cute bird tracks.

There were snowstorms looming above us, on the peaks.  It made the scene look half-erased, as if a landscape painter changed his mind, waiting for a better idea to strike.

The kids were whiny at times, but eventually became more stalwart.  It wasn’t that cold, to tell the truth.  And while the path was slippery, only one of us ever slipped.  (Me.  Ow.  Ironically, it happened just at the moment Brian and I were discussing the novel Icefall.)

Here’s the real reason we decided to hike in Midway:

Tarahumara!  One of our favorite Mexican restaurants.  They have killer chilles rellenos, and about twenty kinds of salsa. I like the pineapple mango best.

But the bakery items are my favorite — orejas, pastelas, and key lime flan.  They aren’t pictured because they were eaten too quickly.

The day overall?


15 Minutes

Those of you long-time blog readers are aware that I’ve been trying to write a novel for the past 2 1/2 years.  Nothing ambitious, more of a “let’s learn how to write a novel” project.  I really love the story, so it gives me a lot of satisfaction when I’m able to get the revisions churned out.

When I can’t get the revisions churned out, life is very, very frustrating.  Right now it is almost unbearably so.  The big kids are back in school, and William’s in preschool every morning.  I was under the impression that Back to School time would mean Back to Writing time for me.  I had a mental goal of getting the book ready for test-readers sometime soon.

But — oh.  What did I forget?  That’s right, Katie.  My big, delicious, very sweet yet very demanding eight-month-old.  She especially likes smacking people in the face.  See?



William’s preschool is 3 hours long. That’s 3 hours of potential writing time.

Take away 20 minutes for walking back and forth to school: 2 hrs 40 minutes.

Katie needs a nurse right when we get home: 2 hrs. 10 minutes

Katie needs another nurse at the end of the three hour block: 1 hour 40 minutes.

That’s just the basic Katie requirements — and you’ll notice that my writing time is already halved.  Add to this mix a few diaper changes (5 minutes each) a situation where Katie will only take a nap on my lap (20 minutes) a moment when Katie bumps her head and needs a cuddle to stop crying (10-15 minutes) or is simply bored and wants to be held (20 unbearably frustrating minutes) and the time is whittled down even more.

And heaven help us if I even need to do anything like answer the phone, change a load of laundry, or use the bathroom. Every morning I keep trying to get back to my Word files, like a dog tugging on a leash.

Every morning, I spend three hours doing 15 minutes of work.

(How was I able to write this blog post today?  I’m typing while eating, that’s how.  Really.)

I try to type one-handed when I’m nursing, but that’s really frustrating — especially considering that I’m doing heavy revisions, which requires a lot of juggling between different word files, dragging blocks of text here and there, and other tasks that are much easier with two hands.  (One-armed novelists of the world, I salute you!)

The worst part of it all is when someone asks “What did you do today?” or “How did your day go?”  Most young mothers agree: this is about the worst question in the world, because the answer is usually “What did I do?  Nothing,” followed by a torrent of tears.  (Mentally, anyway.  I usually just say “Fine” and sigh.)

A better thing would be to ignore the unfolded laundry, dirty dishes, the scattered toys untouched since yesterday, and say, “Hey, I’m home!  And the kids are safe and healthy, their homework is done, and the baby’s thriving!  You must have had a very productive day!  I am so impressed and proud of you!  Did I also mention that you look fabulous?”

Bad News

In short: it looks like we’re going to be moving away from Utah next summer.

For a long time, Brian’s advisor at ARUP has wanted to hire him as soon as his residency was over.  We thought this was great.  But when said advisor went to the higher-ups to move things forward, he learned that his department wasn’t going to get any more money.

Ditto for any of the other positions Brian might hold at ARUP.  Shame on us for thinking this was a sure thing, I suppose, but I’m pretty torn up about it.

All of our family is here in Utah, and I love, love our house and neighborhood.  The house has been in Brian’s family since it was built, and if we move, it’ll be sold off.

To say I’ve been upset has been an understatement.  I’ve been blubbering quite a bit, and so stressed out and worried that I broke out in a case of hives.

HIVES.  All over my FACE and ARMS.

Okay, that’s enough for now.  If I keep writing about this, I’ll start crying again.  And the skin on my cheeks has had enough abuse for one week.

Report Cards

Jeffrey and Eleanor brought home their report cards over the weekend.  I was concerned to see that Eleanor’s card noted that she has problems working independently and having a good attitude towards learning and following directions.

I mentioned this to Eleanor, and she took it seriously.  At dinnertime, she insisted on standing on a chair and being my helper, “so that I can be a better worker at school.”

ME: Yes, Eleanor.  You need to do your best at school.

ELEANOR: Yeah, and not get put into Time-Out so much.

ME: !?!?!?!

ME: You get put into Time-Out?

ELEANOR: Yeah, almost every day.

ME: Why?

ELEANOR: Because I keep talking when Mrs. Wright says not to.

ME:  Well, you need to follow your teacher’s directions.  There’s a time for talking and a time for doing your work.

ELEANOR: But Mrs. Wright says it’s okay to talk while we work!

ME: Oh?

ELEANOR: It just isn’t okay to scream while we work.

ME: [heavy sigh]

Five Hours

Five hours is the on-average amount of sleep I’ve been getting every night lately.

Part of it is owing to stress — ordinarily, holiday excitement and baby preparation would be enough to keep me wired 24/7, but this week we also had the meeting at school for Jeffrey’s Individualized Educational Plan (or IEP).  Nobody likes to hear criticism about their child, so sitting in a room with five educational professionals listing Jeffrey’s problems was not fun.  Even though I agreed with most of what they said — in fact, some of their findings (via testing) matches up exactly with what I’ve been telling them for quite some time now.  Such as: Jeffrey doesn’t need occupaional therapy; his writing is fine, it’s his spelling that needs help.  Or, that Jeffrey is fine cognition-wise; it’s his lack of focus in class that has caused him to fall so far behind the curve.  He needs small-group, individualized instruction. And it looks like he is finally going to get some.  Yay!  Let’s see if the school follows through with its promises.

What irks me is that whenever one of Jeff’s teachers has mentioned his inattention to me (from age 3 on up) they always look at me like I have some kind of magic solution for solving this problem.  I always want to smack myself on the head and say “Why, how silly of me!  I forgot to turn the switch on the back of Jeffrey’s head from ‘naughty’ to ‘nice’ this morning!” 

But, really, there aren’t any easy solutions beyond patience, patience, and more patience.  Our daily one-on-one homework sessions last about 60 minutes, and frequently involve Jeffrey screaming himself red in the face, chewing up his erasers and throwing pencils on the floor.  He’s been especially obdurate lately since Eleanor has begun to bring “funwork” home from kindergarten, which she zips through with glee while Jeffrey struggles to write sentences.  As he tearfully said to me yesterday, “Next year Eleanor will start real homework, and she’ll race so fast ahead of me that she’ll be in seventh grade by the end of the year!”  I reassured him that he’s just as smart as Eleanor, he just needs to work as hard as she does, and he sat down and began to write.  For about 30 seconds.  And then the eraser-chewing began once more.  (And when I say “chewing,” I don’t mean that he sucks on his pink eraser; he takes BITES and then SWALLOWS.)

Yes, educators.  I know exactly how difficult it is to teach my child.  Which is why I need your help.

So I keep waking up at 4:30 or 5:00 — late enough in the morning that my body doesn’t initially “feel” like it needs more sleep, but early enough for me to collapse some time around 9:30 a.m.

The fact that I get nightly ligament pain around my belly bulge doesn’t help, either.  What I call my “tummy tendons” ache constantly unless I get out of bed and walk around the room — for some reason, it helps the pain go away, but not always.  Last night’s session was particularly bad; I still have “phantom pain” in my hips this morning.

Well.  Time for a nap?  We’ll see if my brain can calm down enough for one to happen.

Your Questions Answered! Kind of!

Thanks to everyone who showed concern over my announcement (whoa, that was TWO WEEKS AGO?) that Jeffrey has been diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome.

Here’s the backstory:

  1. We’ve been trying to figure out Jeffrey with the help of various psychologists since he was 5.  It was thought with his initial testing back then that he had either ADHD or Asperger’s, but he was too young for an definitive diagnosis.
  2. From January-June 2008, we sent Jeffrey to weekly play sessions with a children’s psychologist.  (We had excellent mental health care coverage in Pittsburgh.)  The final call by Dr. J?  Possibly something called an “Executive Function Delay,” which will make it difficult for him to learn certain things (like writing and reading.  Bad news for his children’s librarian mom).
  3. Jeffrey discovers ancient Egypt, ancient Rome, the American Revolutionary war, and other things about history that continue to fascinate him.  First clue.
  4. In kindergarten, Jeffrey’s teacher didn’t think anything was unusual or different about him.  Although, he did get bullied by his peers that year.  I could tell that he was considered an “oddball” by his classmates.
  5. Within the first week of first grade, I began to get phone calls from his teacher.  Jeffrey needs speech therapy, occupational therapy, pull out time with a reading specialist, and why can’t he stay focussed long enough to complete the most basic task?  Jeffrey — who has always been a fidgety kid — begins a nervous habit of chewing his clothes.  Handwriting is painful.  Second clue.
  6. Christmas 2009 — we get a Nintendo Wii for the holidays, but Jeffrey is too excited to learn how to play them.  He still spends “Wii time” watching Brian and I play, and jumping up and down a lot.
  7. February 2010 — maybe Jeffrey has ADHD?  His pediatrician gives him a prescription for stimulant medication, but they aren’t as effective as they should be.  Anything beyond a very small dose gives him mania.
  8. February 2010 — piano lessons have become too painful to continue.  Jeffrey takes a break, and Eleanor takes his spot with his teacher.  She’s only 4 at the time, but progresses twice as fast as he did.
  9. March 2010 — Jeffrey develops a nervous stutter.  Third clue.
  10. Spring 2010 — Jeffrey goes in for consultations with the Center for Children with Special Health Care Needs.  We try antidepressants to help with his anxiety, but once again: mania.  He was running around the neighborhood barefoot in 45 degree weather.
  11. Summer 2010 — Away from school and classmates, Jeffrey’s stutter disappears.  His collection of books about ancient history is quite extensive.  He becomes obsessed with complex role-playing board games (like Settlers of Catan and Dungeons & Dragons), although he prefers to make up his own rules and detailed dramatic scenarios that his friends can’t understand.  He doesn’t seem aware when his friends are bored or unable to penetrate the rich fantasy world he’s constructed.  Fifth clue.
  12. June 2010 — Jeffrey takes an intensive reading workshop with the University Reading Clinic.  During his final evaluation, his tutor says “I think Jeffrey has autism or Asperger’s or something.”  I think: oh, you must have gone to a good medical school to make that diagnosis, Mr. Reading Tutor!  Geez.
  13. August 2010 — I ask Jeffrey if there’s any place he’d like to go for his last day of summer vacation, and he requests the Beehive House on Temple Square.  While there, he gladly answers all the questions the tour guides pose.  When Eleanor answers a question incorrectly (“the pioneers came on a train!”)  Jeffrey corrects her (“No, Ella.  The railroad had not been built during this time period.”)  Everyone on the tour thinks he’s brilliant.  Sixth clue.
  14. Second Grade — Within the first week, I’m once again fielding phone calls from his teacher.  Jeffrey needs speech therapy, occupational therapy, and why can’t he stay focused for very long?  Why does he keep interrupting class to talk about writing a play, or Egypt, or Star Wars?  I spend a lot of time crying.  We’re still waiting for the occupational therapy to get started.
  15. September 2010 — Jeffrey makes a poster about himself for school.  He insists that almost half of the poster be about history, and the other half about National Parks (Jeffrey is something of a fervent environmentalist.)  It’s pretty obvious to me by now what’s going on, although other family members remain skeptical.
  16. October 2010 — Jeffrey is tested by a psychologist who specializes in behavioral disorders at the Center for Children with Special Health Care Needs.  After Jeff delivers a lengthy monologue about ancient Egypt, the doctor declares his diagnosis to be “definitely Asperger’s.”  Oh, and that diagnosis of “Excecutive Function Delay”?  It falls on the Asperger’s spectrum.

So what this means is (to over-simplify it): in Jeff’s brain, his senses are heightened, but his reaction is to back away, to feel overwhelmed.  Jeffrey’s inability to focus isn’t caused by distractibility; it’s caused by anxiety, which is why he was stuttering, why he was chewing his clothes, why he jumps up and down when watching video games or television, why he doesn’t look me in the eye when we talk, why the ADHD medication has given us mixed results.  It’s also why he can’t navigate socially very well with his peers — other kids make him so excited that he doesn’t know how to behave around them.  Although he loves other kids, they get him so worked up that he often retreats into his own personal fantasy world — which is why he doesn’t realize when they aren’t playing with him anymore.  The fantasy world is also why he frequently interrupts classroom discussion and conversations with non sequiturs.  The heightened sensory input also affects his writing — holding a pencil is just darn uncomfortable.  (Imagine putting a pencil between your toes.  It would drive you crazy, right?)

It’s essentially a diagnosis of Extreme Social Awkwardness, for Jeffrey.

The good news is that Jeffrey’s condition is, on the autism spectrum, pretty mild.  He smiles, he loves physical contact, he isn’t picky about his clothing or food, and while his fondness for history is unusual, it isn’t as all-encompassing as it is for many Asperger kids’ obsessions.  (I highlighted it in my timeline, but Jeffrey has plenty of other interests beyond Egypt.  This one’s just darn persistent.)  If your experience with autistic kids comes from reading books like The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time or Parallel Play, throw it out the window.  A spectrum disorder means a lot of diversity.

If you suggest that the solution to Jeffrey’s problems is homeschooling or some kind of private tutoring, you’re wrong — the last thing he needs is to be taken away from other people.  If anything else, Jeffrey needs more opportunities to practice his social skills.  I’ve read that having Asperger’s is a lot like being in a foreign country — you speak the language, but you don’t get jokes, subtlety, social customs, etc. and this makes you reluctant to interact with anybody.  Immersion is the only way to overcome this.  In fact, many adults with Asperger’s enjoy living in exotic cultures (such as Japan or India) because their difficulty in grasping social norms is chalked up to being a foreigner, not to being “weird.”

The other interesting news is that my mom and I have realized that one of my brothers probably also has undiagnosed Asperger’s.  This is hopeful for me, since said brother is now a rather fabulous high school student with good grades and friends.  Many kids with Asperger’s grow out of it as they reach adulthood.  This gives me hope.

So: right now Jeffrey’s taking a Social Skills class with a non profit in town called the Children’s Center, where they practice basic things like giving good eye contact, speaking slowly enough for someone to understand you, and how to take turns with asking/listening. We’re still waiting for occupational therapy to get started.  And my reservoir of patience for Jeffrey has just been refilled.  Honestly, it’s a relief to get a name, a diagnosis to something that has been otherwise incomprehensible and frustrating.

In the meanwhile, the people who glare at Jeffrey during church services (and sometimes move our church bags to a different pew so they don’t have to sit next to us) can donate money to Asperger’s research and leave us otherwise alone.

Yes, you read that last sentence correctly.

Also, the brother-in-law who once joked to me that he “hopes he never has a kid like Jeffrey” can make a SIZEABLE donation to said institution for Asperger’s research.  And then imagine what life would be like if I had some kind of long-range slapping device.

Those of you who know and love Jeffrey, and see his sweetness and goodness underneath his mountain of problems, who show him patience and compassion despite the high-energy quirkiness, thank you, thank you, thank you.  I’ll be needing your help from here on out.

Jonah Day

Today is laundry day, but this morning our dryer broke down. 


When I went to pick up William from preschool, I was informed that he was sick, with a fever.  We headed to the doctor, and yup: ear infection.  The neat thing, I guess, is that he was acually able to articulate his needs: “Left ear hurts, Mom.”

The great thing is that we live two doors down from some of the kindest people on earth.  I’ve spent much of the afternoon hauling baskets of wet laundry over to take a spin in their dryer.  And even if this particular family hadn’t been able to help, I know that I could have also taken the clothes across the street, or to the houses kitty-corner from ours.  It’s a great place to live, even if my family is regarded as being “odd” because I eschew vinyl lettering, don’t take trips to Hawaii for spring break, and have only three children.

But I digress.

A good chunk of the morning was spent crouched behind the broken dryer on the possibly the world’s filthiest linoleum (hey, how do YOU clean back there?) accompanied by naught but a rachet set and The Fix-It Yourself Manual, only to discover that our dryer is so old that it can’t be fixed by me.  The book recommended removing the back panel to test the machine’s various electric components.  However, the back panel on my dryer can’t be removed because there IS NO BACK PANEL — the sides and rear of the machine are all one continuous strip of metal.  (Alas, I didn’t realize this until after I had ratcheted off half of the bolts.)  Repairing it would require a dismantling of the entire machine, and considering that the problem is most likely a burnt-out heating element, it might not even be worth it.

This dryer is from the Nixon administration, after all.  No, it’s not avocado-colored (like my oven).  It’s goldenrod.

Add to this mix a few classic Jeffrey moments (he climbed down a window well and spent time throwing rocks at the window; he wandered off to a friend’s house without telling me, got caught trying to climb inside the broken dryer, etc.) and you can probably understand why my head is begging for mercy right now.

When Brian came home, he tried to comfort me: “Hey, at least it’s not a Job Day.” 

Har de har har.


Two days ago I was typing in the kitchen, when a small dark shape darted along the cabinet baseboards out of the corner of my eye.  When I looked up, there was nothing, so I cautiously went back to work.

There was another movement, and I looked up again — only to see a little grey mouse looking at me from behind the refrigerator.  Ack!

After screaming like a silly girl, I packed up the computer and headed for the living room, but I couldn’t concentrate because I could still hear little mouse claws running back and forth across the linoleum


How on earth could this stupid mouse be so bold?  And how did it get in?  This was the second mouse we had had in the kitchen in the past month, and it gave me a serious case of the jibblies.  I thanked my lucky stars that Eleanor’s dance lesson that afternoon gave me a reason to stay out of the house, because there was no way I or any of the kids were going to be hanging around with Furrytail McCreepyClaws scampering about.  When Brian came home from work, he set up a few traps and I shooed everybody out the door for a fast food dinner.

The creature was caught in a trap that evening, so all’s well now, but it didn’t prevent him from penetrating the kids’ imaginations.

Jeffrey became completely paranoid, feeling certain that the slightest movement on his part would cause a mouse to materialize from nowhere and bite him.  I told him that piano practice was good for frightening mice away, and he went through his recital piece five times.

Eleanor, on the other hand, spent time developing plans for elaborate, ruthless traps, in particular one called a “Cut Trap,” which involves a cage, a knife, a wooden block, and a giant picture of a cat’s head.  The process, as far as I could figure out, requires someone to stand patiently for hours, and when a mouse runs under the knife, he or she stomps his foot down on the wooden block and the knife cuts the mouse in two.  “And then you can go outside and play.”

I’ve yet to figure out what the giant cat’s head is for.