Dear Abby: Last week, I had a seizure in front of my fourth-grade students. This has never happened to me before, so I had never spoken to my students about such a thing. I want to write them and their families a letter expressing my apologies, thanking them for their kind thoughts and giving basic advice on how to handle a seizure. Is this appropriate? If so, how do I start the letter?
— Appropriate in New Jersey
Dear Appropriate: Before writing the letter, check with the principal of your school. Because you now know that you are prone to having seizures, I think it makes sense that your students should know what one is, and what to do in case it happens again in the classroom. Some seizures can be almost unnoticeable, while others can be quite severe. If yours are severe, a student should immediately inform another adult and ask for help.
P.S. While you may want to thank everyone for their kindness, it should not be necessary to apologize to anybody for something you couldn’t control.
Dear Abby: My daughter has always been very independent. She had a normal childhood with the usual friends and events, nothing traumatic that I know of. She is a pretty girl with a funny personality and is very bright.
The issue is, she is 18 and has been on only two dates. She shows no interest in forming any sort of romantic relationship. She has never had a boyfriend, though many boys have expressed interest in her. The two dates she did go on, one in high school and one in college, she called “duds.”
She says she’s not gay, and has commented on good-looking guys. I don’t know what to think. Do you?
— Wondering Mom
Dear Wondering: You say your daughter has always been independent. It’s possible she has enough self-assurance that she doesn’t think she needs a man in her life right now. It may also be that before becoming emotionally involved with anyone, she would prefer to focus on her education or career path. Whatever her reasons, you would be making a mistake to push her in any direction she doesn’t feel ready for, or make her uncomfortable about being the way she is.
Dear Abby: Mom passed away five years ago, and Dad died four months ago. For the last years of his life Dad was hoping we’d move into their home. It’s a beautiful place in a country setting with lots of trees, including pecan trees. We were undecided.
After Dad died, my husband and I were at home making all the funeral arrangements and we were both emotionally exhausted. While I tried to stay busy inside the house, my husband decided to go outside to clear his head. While walking around the yard, he found a pecan in the grass! Abby, there are no pecan trees in this entire neighborhood. We knew the rational answer was that a squirrel must have dropped it, but in our hearts we felt it was Dad giving us the hug we needed so badly, and his way of telling us that everything will work out.
We will be moving into my parents’ home in the near future.
— At Peace in Louisiana
Dear at Peace: There’s nothing nutty about your experience. Sometimes we just need a nudge from above to guide us into doing what’s right for us. I wish you well in your new home.