Press Pause!

Stop! Everything just stop for one god damn minute!!!

I know this is a ridiculous request but I feel like my world is spinning out of control and I have no way of slowing things down so I can just make a quick list of what the hell is going on then put things into motion again.

Kinda like playing a game. When things get too much or you lose sight of your objective, you can press pause and make a note, check your positioning, then you hit play and the game goes on.

But this is life, it’s not a game. And I’m completely lost. There is so much going on I feel like I’m in the middle of a storm that has no end in sight.

First there is the loan process. We’re applying for a home loan and the steps taken just to get that started has been migraine inducing. Then there is the timing. We have a lease till June and we’d like to buy a house to move into so we can’t look too soon or too late. Too soon and we’ll be stuck with double payments or breaking a lease. Too late and we’ll have to find temporary living quarters. So when it the right time to look? I feel the strain of being stuck in limbo and the pressure is making the migraine in progress get worse.

Now for the kidlet. He’s been struggling and fighting against school work. So we’re changing things up. A sitter is going to come to our house and take care of him and help him with homework instead of him going to daycare. This will give him someone to work with in the comfort of his own home. We hope to see some positive outcomes from this. Although it’s a great move, it makes me nervous. We’re saying goodbye to a center that is always open and always there and relying just on one person to make sure she arrives on time to take care of him. I don’t feel that she wouldn’t, we’ve interviewed her and feel good with our choice, but I feel like my safety net has been removed beneath this tightrope I’ve been walking.

On top of that, the kidlet asked to be in baseball this season. A sport neither his dad nor I play. Well, we were very unprepared when we heard that we are committed to two practices a week and two games, one weekday and one weekend. Huh?! How in the hell are we supposed to fit this in?! So now we’re scrambling (at least it feels like we are) to figure this new twist into our already busy week.

I could cry… And I have. My emotions seem to be sitting on the surface and I get teary without much provocation. Watching a show, I cry. Reading a book, I tear up. Playing a video game, I choke back my sobs. The stress and swirling madness that is our life right now seems to be weighing on me heavily and I can’t find a calm place to rest my mind and detach from all the changes and the big life questions we have in front of us to just breathe and recenter myself.

And the worst part is that I don’t feel I have time or the availability to really get everything out. I don’t have an outlet. Even my running isn’t defusing the issue. I run and put all my hurt and sadness and frustrations and anger on the pavement. I’ll feel a little relief but it lasts a few hours then I’m back to square one feeling shitty and overwhelmed.

Deep breaths. Loud music. Quiet reading time. Lots of water and less junk food. I’m taking all these steps to alleviate my frustrations and sometimes it works. Most times it doesn’t.

I’d just like a break…

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Time To Fake It

“Why are you sad, mom?”

My son hit me with this question this morning out of left field. Lucky for me, I was chopping an onion at that exact moment so I could blame my tears on the pungent scent wafting at me from the cutting board. But his astute observation made me realize that I was no longer doing a good job at hiding how I’m feeling lately.

And how am I feeling? Well to be quite frank I’m feeling miserable. I’m stuck in a hole that’s just deep enough to keep me contained while still being able to see the sunlight just above me. I’m frustrated and angry but still stuck.

I fall into this hole every couple of months when I realize I spend most of my day doing something I honestly dislike. Most of the time I can list the positive things about it and move on. I’ll go along, all fine and dandy, then I’ll get to a point when I trip into this hole where all the positive vibes wear off and suddenly I’m no longer able to mask my feelings.

When this happens I become a wild cat caught in a corner. I lash out, I claw at my surroundings, and just panic emotionally. Logic and reason fly out the window and I respond to life by shutting down and shutting out those around me.

It ain’t pretty and it’s probably not healthy but it’s my way of coping. In the end, after I’ve thrashed about and cried a good amount, I will suck it up and just deal with the hand I’ve been dealt. This is life, this is what being an adult means. Sacrifice, acceptance, doing what you don’t want to do for the sake of keeping everyone else happy and healthy.

Creative Frustrations

Creative Frustrations

It is one of those days,
one in which I am faced with all
my shortcomings.

A day I will spend overanalyzing
my Self (or lack thereof).

In searching for the spark
of Me
I find incomplete sentences
and discarded dreams.

I find my Self as nothing more than
a collection of disorganized hopes and
good intentions

(the dust of artistic stagnation

    piling up at the foot of my bed).

I, my Self, am brimming with
wasted wishes and
a trashbin of disposable attempts.

My creative frustrations well within me,
seeking an outlet.

Missing Sunglasses

My sunglasses were missing. I couldn’t recall the last time I saw them or when I’d worn them recently. But I suddenly found myself needing them that morning and realized they were not where they should have been.

Standing in my room with my blouse on but untucked and my work trousers unbuttoned around my waist, I scanned the surfaces around me, hoping to spot them staring back at me with a look of disapproval at my state of undress and my room’s lack of organization.

My nightstand stood by my unmade bed, a book I was trying to finish reading resting on top of it in front of my alarm clock. A lamp my friends  decorated for me as a house warming gift when I moved in stood behind my book, surrounded by a thin layer of dust. But no sunglasses were waiting for me there.

A tall beaten bookshelf stood snugly in the corner of my room across from my bed. It had been my grandmother’s and I vowed to never let it be donated or sold. My grandmother, much like myself, had been an avid reader and her bookshelf was always full to the brim with literature and poetry, books of all shapes and sizes. As a young child I loved it; the smell of the pages and the piles of reading a delight to snoop through on warm summer evenings when I stayed with her. She would sneak in books for me along the bottom shelf and, like a game of hide and seek, I’d thumb through the stacks to find my hidden treasure. Finding it, the only children’s literature among the rows of fiction and classic stories, I’d scurry to her side where she waited in her arm chair, her knitting in her hands and yarn rolling about her feet. I’d wave the book at her, beaming proudly and she’d reach out to me into her lap and read from my find.

I scanned the ground, a smile on my face as I let the memory of my grandmother fade, and noted that a day of picking up the laundry and organizing my project folders might do me some good. After a steady glance around, ,y littered floor showed no signs of relinquishing my hidden glasses so I knelt down and began to search.

My hand scraped along the carpet, wincing as my skin brushed against the fibers. I unearthed a long lost book, a few dollar bills, a hair-tie and some mismatched socks probably considered long gone and lost in the dryer. But no glasses.

After spending a small chunk of time in a fruitless search of my room for the carelessly misplaced glasses that I desperately needed this particular morning, I realized I was getting frustrated. Soon the tears welled up and I could feel the hot pressure of anger ballooning behind my eyes. I stifled the streams as I pushed and piled things around my room in a hurried whirlwind of motions. I was now running late and the fact that I knew my sunglasses to be close by but could not find them was about to drive me mad.

Absolutely mad.

Soon the pressure released with a small choked sob from the back of my throat and a streak of warmth ran down my cheek. Now I was crying? Over sunglasses?

But I knew it had little to do with my glasses and that I was searching for something else, something lost that I knew could never be found.

Suddenly I reached down and grasped a handful of clothing and tossed them behind me. I reached again and again, pulling up everything I could get my hands on and throwing them around in frustration. I was flinging more than just clothing. Curses and words of resentment flew through the air to pile on top of the useless items I had laying around. I sniffled and sobbed, grabbing at anything within reach and throwing them about, making what was already a mess even bigger.

The morning slowly passed around my flurry of anger and after awhile I found myself spent. My face was slick with sadness and my hair was sticking to the ruins of my makeup, a blonde streak of color tangled with in my view here or there. My back rested against the edge of my bed and my shoulders hung limply as I slowed my breathing and tried to stem the flow from my nose.

She was gone and there was nothing I could do or say to make it better. Trust had been broken, threads snipped and memories sullied.My family would never be the same.

My head was heavy and throbbed. I could barely breathe through my nose and as I lifted my eyes to survey the damage, a headache echoed through my skull. And there they were, sitting at the mouth of my handbag, glaring back at me with disdain and a hoity look of aloofness. My glasses had been there all along.

Standing gently, tears quietly dropping now that my tantrum was over, I reached for my cell phone and dialed the office. Sherry answered and expressed concern at my congested tone. I told her I was ill and needed a day off. She cooed and told me to drink tea and rest up, her honest concern for my health making my tears flow again.

Like a child, I wiped at my eyes with the edge of my silk sleeve, leaving a stained trail of grief and half applied mascara along my arm. I agreed to take care of myself and hung up. The phone leaped from my hand and made a dull smack as it landed in a soft pile of laundry at my feet.

Slinking to my bed, my unbuttoned slacks fell away and I pulled off my blouse in a single motion. Reaching down into the fray on my floor, I grabbed a pair of worn sweatpants and a tee-shirt from my varsity days. In a fluid motion, I dressed myself and then rolled into bed, pulling up my comforter till I was huddled deep beneath its folds.

And there, under the comfort and warmth of my bed, I cried myself to sleep.

 

Dirty Laundry

Ever just want to stand up and scream?

To let out an ear piercing throaty holler loud enough to wake the dead?

In past couple of years it seems I’m fighting an uphill battle. And my foe? Me. I’m fighting against myself.

I’m fighting against my 5 year old self that wanted to be a mommy that stayed home to cook and clean and take care of the kids. I’m fighting against my 7 year old self that wanted to be a teacher handing out lessons and homework. I’m fighting my 23 year old self that had everything within reach, all ready for me to take on and live it.

I’m constantly fighting.

And yesterday, for the first time, I didn’t feel like fighting anymore.

I can’t say I didn’t care because I obviously do, enough to write about it and dwell on it. But I do know that the exhaustion from this uphill battle the last couple of years has officially worn me down.

I no longer have hopes and dreams to work towards or look forward to.

Now I just trudge along, making the most of the present and working to survive day in and day out. I’m working to make the most with what I have and to live without a dream for the future. Without an idea of what I want because so far, what I want has only brought pain and sadness. What I want has only given me false hope for a future I can’t have.

So I focus on the laundry. Yes the laundry. The clothes scattered about my bedroom floor, mixed in with the shoes that need to be put away. I focus on folding and organizing my drawers, separating the things that fit and the items that need to be donated. I will wash the dirty and hang up the clean things.

I’ll focus on the laundry.

And tomorrow, I’ll find something else to keep my attention. To keep my broken heart from realizing what I want so badly isn’t what is meant to be. That it’s better right now to live moment to moment without much thought on the future.

But for today, I’ll focus on my laundry.