Uggggg. Rough day. And today’s prompt over at NaPoWriMo invites us to write a poem complimenting something. This is probably going to be a good exercise for me, given that I’ve had a tough time today and I’m feeling quite negative. Hmmm. Should I try praising the thing I really am not liking these days, which is attempting to homeschool my kids with materials from their public school system when all the kids really want to do is watch TV?
Ah, remote learning, how AMAZING you are!
I love being in the comfort of my home with my kids.
I love that my kids get to go to the bathroom
and have snacks when they want.
I love that they can take breaks when they want.
I love that I don’t have to rush them out of bed in the morning.
And even though I’m pretty terrible at this, I’m learning too.
Even though I don’t like coaxing, cajoling and bribing
my kids to do each little piece of work,
they are learning too.
So although I’m really excited for this time to be over,
I know that there is enough good here
that I’ll miss parts of this experience when it’s gone.
Thank you, remote learning, for being a great teacher.
Woke up this morning,
said to myself
It’s time to apply for unemployment.
Right in the middle,
the website crashed.
I couldn’t log on to my kids’ iPad
to install the Kids’ Messenger app
because I had forgotten my
Apple ID password,
and there was a whole process involved to reset it.
Then I couldn’t log on to my Human Resources account
to cash in my ONE hour of paid sick leave
and this is after going back and forth via email
with someone from HR this whole week.
Then my friend told me an email she sent
got bounced back…
one of my email accounts has a totally full inbox.
I’m thinking to myself,
I mean, really all that happened
is that I’m home and finally have the time
to take the lid off this can of worms.
Technology feels gross right now.
But it’s the only way to stay connected right now.
So I need to get over myself
and just handle this can of worms.
Enveloped in complete darkness,
she spells out clearly from her depths
words like ropes reaching,
asking someone to take hold
and pull her out.
Maybe if enough people
take just one thread of her words,
maybe she’ll be lifted out of her pit
and see the light of day once more.
Turning adversity into opportunity…
being willing to see value in difficulty,
not complaining, but doing what needs to be done.
Rewiring my brain is difficult.
My brain wants to complain.
It wants me to feel sorry for myself,
to feel like a victim,
to focus on the abandonment, the betrayal,
the grief and the loss.
It wants me to feel envious of intact families,
and look at women with their men
and ask, Why not me?
I’m tired of being tortured by my mind.
I don’t want it to remind me of everything that went wrong.
I want to focus on what’s going right.
But after four decades of negative programming,
I don’t know if I’m capable of seeing the positive.
I taught all my yoga classes
(seven in three days)
and I am exhausted.
I had dinner in Westminster
with my cousin and her family,
gave my father a card and a hug.
Back home the loneliness sets in.
My kids are with their dad and his girlfriend,
and I keep seeing
families playing together,
wondering how my life got to this,
where I’m working myself to exhaustion
just to make ends meet,
homeless in less than a month,
angry at the injustice,
lonely without my kids.
I want this to change.
I am willing to change.
But I need help to see beyond my pain.
I just want to be a good mother.
I try so hard.
And at the end of the day,
I lose it sometimes.
I lose it with my kids
when I’m tired and they’re tired.
There used to be another adult around
who’d step in
when I couldn’t anymore.
That adult is gone.
When I’m tired and sick
there is no one else to take care of me
I’m tired of taking care of myself,
tired of being alone.
I want help.
It’s in these moments
that the anger wells up
if I don’t stop it.
I get angry for being thrust into this place
of missing my kids when they’re not here
and overwhelmed when they are.
I’m tired of this mess, this story.
I can do so well for hours and hours.
I can be proud of my mothering,
the balance I manage to find.
But at the end of the day
I’m tired and they’re tired
and sometimes I just lose it.
Why am I so grumpy,
Why do I keep snapping at my kids?
Why is my house such a mess?
Why do I feel angry at my husband again?
Why does my life feel so disorganized?
Why am I so disappointed in myself
and everything about my current situation?
it’s time for bed.
My kids come back home today
and they tell me
(Insert Husband’s Mistress’s name here)
is going with us to Utah in July!
In a state of shock.
I think I might have gasped.
My daughter asks
Are you jealous, Mom?
And I answer
No, not jealous…I’m…I’m…surprised.
I text him a litany of curse words
to make any sailor proud.
Then I text his Mormon mother,
my (still) mother in law,
the woman I called Mom for seven years.
Are you okay with them
sharing a bed in your home
when we are still married?
I don’t want my children exposed
to their adulterous behavior.
She answers back,
That’s never allowed in my house.
But talk to him. Not me. That’s it.
Then I text his dad and his stepmom.
Neither one of them answers.
No surprise there.
I mean, after seven good years of marriage
and still together after eight,
what’s one daughter in law
down the drain?
I guess I’m disposable to them
Just like I was to him.
Luckily there was a CoDA meeting tonight.
Sitting here wondering why.
I managed to find a safe space within myself
and then he pulls the rug out again.
And now I’m falling again,
and the floor opens up,
and the earth opens up,
and I fall clear to the other side
And I’m free falling again.
When will the ground hold?
When will my safe space
extend to a place outside of myself,
a space where he can’t bother me,
a space that’s mine
and mine alone?
I curl inside myself
than I ever have before.
It is dark, uncomfortable,
far away from everyone.
It should feel safe
but it doesn’t.
This isn’t a fearless navigation
of unknown territory…
it’s staying stuck in one place,
I can’t remember
why I’m so scared
or what got me here
in the first place.
I’d like to get out
if only I’d let myself go.