Not what I signed up for

I am struggling again. My girls are being absolutely awful. They won’t pick up after themselves – I’m not just talking normal messiness. This is a whole other level. I went to trivia last night and came home to a complete disaster in the kitchen. They’d made pancakes and there was flour and sugar all over the counter, chocolate chips and batter spilled on the floor, and every single dish and pan in the kitchen was filthy. Like dripping batter all over the sides of things, twelve utensils used to mix things filthy. It was gross. And it’s like this constantly. Nothing I do, nothing I say makes a particle of difference. I’ve tried rewards. I’ve tried punishment. I’ve tried talking. I’ve tried nagging. I’ve tried yelling. Nothing. I’m sick of this. I feel like I’m beating my head against a wall and I’m tired of it. So fucking tired. I can’t stand to be around them. They are miserable creatures to be around. They are rude to me, rude to everyone, really. They know everything. According to them,  I know nothing. I’m a terrible mother and I don’t do anything for them. Teenagers are like this. I get that. This is so different to what I hear from other parents of kids this age, though.

I had to have a lock installed on my bedroom and I’ve had to move all but 3 plates there because they wouldn’t bring dirty dishes down from their rooms. When they did bring them down, after literally weeks of me pitching a fit, the dishes were so disgusting, so covered in mold, that I had to throw them out. That? Is not normal.

At the moment, I want to leave and never come back. I hate this life.

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Better late than never

Today I emailed an application and a check to the local university. I’m going to try to go back to school. I read and watch a ridiculous amount of British history stuff – I figure I may as well put all this knowledge to use somewhere besides Tuesday night trivia.

Since I started looking into this process, I have felt insanely happy. Like, singing along loudly in the car, grinning for no good reason happy. I absolutely love history. LOVE it. I don’t even know what I’ll do with a history degree, but if I can spend some time every week immersed in learning it, I will be a happy camper.

Panic, but not at the disco

I had a panic attack at work yesterday. At least I think it was a panic attack. I got an awful, stabbing pain in my stomach, then I got hot and faint, with tunnel vision. I put my head down on my desk after a bit but it didn’t help. My coworker saw me and brought me an ice pack and sat with me while I struggled to breathe. It was awful and even now, a day later, I still feel awful. I feel short of breath and like I’m weighted down. It’s really unpleasant and all I want to do is go home and lie down. I have a call in to my GP and I have a therapy appointment on Thursday.

A similar thing happened a couple of weeks ago. The worst bit of it is that nothing caused it. Yesterday I was just sitting at my desk working and bam! Same thing when it happened a few weeks ago.

Blargh. Do. Not. Want.

A little research tells me this is apparently a thing. Joy.

Home alone

Today was good. I went to this little Kawaii shop in town. I got lots of cute stocking stuffers for the girls. They will love it – it’s all cute and Japanese and fun and since both of them are obsessed with anime, it was perfect. I had a hard time keeping myself from buying all the things because good lord, the cute overload in that place was amazing. Then I went to the market and got Builder’s Tea, which is my current tea obsession.

The girls are both at sleepovers tonight, so I’m home, talking to my cats and watching Midsomer Murders. It used to be that I’d be annoyed to be home by myself on a Saturday night. Now, I look forward to it. Tomorrow is a co-worker’s Christmas do, which is always fun. Is this what getting older is all about? ’cause I’m pretty ok with it.

Hazel

 

 

What do you do when you don’t know what to do?

I’m still struggling with getting words out. Plus I feel like all I do is complain, but I don’t have a therapist right now. This is it.

Things have been pretty consistently lousy for several years. I was diagnosed with breast cancer (caught early and seems to be in remission) the day before I signed the papers to buy my first house. Shortly after that, my ex stopped paying child support, so money has been extremely tight. I work for a non-profit, so my salary isn’t great, but I like the job, like the mission of the agency, and I enjoy the people I work with – for the most part. I have a side gig dog sitting, but that’s been slow the last couple of months. I’m looking for something else I can do from home in the evenings so I can bring in some extra money.

I haven’t dated anyone since I split up with the ex almost 9 years ago. At first, I wasn’t interested in it, and then when I thought maybe I could be, Izzy started having a lot of behavioral issues and needing to go to eleventy-thousand appointments a week and I just didn’t have time.

And now I’m just tired. Bone tired, all the time. I could sleep for days and still be tired. The angst and drama with both my girls wears me out. Never getting a break from them wears me out. Stress from not quite having enough money to make it through the month wears me out. I don’t really know what to do about any of these issues beyond what I’m already doing – cutting back on bills, not going out to eat, doing side gigs when and where I can, never going anywhere or buying anything not necessary. I make too much for SNAP benefits but not quite enough to pay every bill on time. I obsess over money. I’ve become a miser and a penny-pincher and I feel mean. I want to be generous and giving and I know, stuff isn’t what’s important, but I feel too overwhelmed to even give much of myself. It’s depressing. I’m depressed. That’s why I can’t write any more. It’s like my brain is full of dense fog and I’m trying to see some light somewhere, but I just can’t make anything out.

14 may kill me

More information has come to light since my conversation with Izzy yesterday. She has been calling and harassing this girl at school, often enough that the girl’s mother called me yesterday to ask me to tell Izzy to stop. Which I did. Repeatedly. Emphatically. What did she do last night at 11 PM? Called the girl. *Cue my head exploding*

Izzy has some issues, I’ll grant you, but her rigidity and inability to see how her actions affect others, or herself, for that matter, are the ones that are causing me the most concern right now. She blames this girl for I don’t even know what, and refuses to understand that if she continues to call her or talk to her in person or on social media, it’s going to become an even bigger issue.

I’m not sure what to do. The school isn’t sure what to do. I’ve contacted Izzy’s therapist, but I’m not sure she’s going to be much help either. I’m ready to pull my hair out with this kid. She just will not understand that what she’s doing is wrong.

Nevermind your bleeding heart

My 14 year-old is currently going through middle-school drama. I’m helping as much as I can, but since I didn’t go to a regular middle school (Catholic school, mostly girls, and I was extremely naive), I didn’t have all this to deal with. I’m helping as best I can, but man, it’s exhausting. And endless. And I wouldn’t be 14 again for all the money in the world. (OK, well maybe for all the money, but even then, it would be miserable.)

We had a long talk last night about one friend who’s mad because Izzy is talking to another kid who this girl doesn’t like. It’s all very convoluted and he said, she said, so-and-so told so-and-so who told L who told me kind of stuff. I don’t know how I avoided most of that when I was a teenager. It’s quite possible that I’ve blocked it all out of my memory, which is a blessing. Teenaged years are a shit show. Having to re-live them would be agony. 

 

Comb and comb and comb some more

I spent all of yesterday and most of today combing and combing and combing hair. From everything I’ve read, that’s the best way to handle head lice. Of course, there’s no one to check MY head, and I’ve been itchy, which I’m hoping to hell is just psychosomatic because I will shave my head bald if I find out I have head lice.

Of course, then I could get a wig. Something long and red and curly, I think. Or maybe a multi-hued punk thing. The possibilities are endless. I could become a whole new person with wigs. Something to ponder as I get back to combing combing combing.

Comb looks weird when you type is a dozen times.

*Scratch, scratch, scratch*

I got a call from the school nurse at 8:45 this morning. I knew neither kid was sick because they were fine when I dropped them at the bus stop. It was those dreaded words: We found head lice on your kids.

So I have the day off and I’m oiling up hair, running everything through the dryer on high, combing combing combing hair with a nit comb, and trying not to scratch through my scalp.

Bleurgh.

Run, hamster, run!

I’m always broke this time of year. I always say I’ll buy Christmas presents throughout the year so that I’m not scrambling in November and December and I rarely am able to get much, if anything, bought before then.

This is the problem: I work for a non-profit. I love what I do and I love the agency’s mission. Howevah. It does not pay well. I don’t want to move to another job because a. I’m old and b. I like that this job isn’t super stressful, that I get a lot of holiday/vacation/sick time. I have a side gig dogsitting, but it’s not steady work. My ex-husband isn’t paying child support (and hasn’t even spoken to his kids in 2.5 years, but that’s another post for another time), so I’m always robbing Peter to pay Paul.

I’d like to find another side gig I can do from home, but my time is pretty well taken up in the evenings with getting the kids to do their homework and shower. Plus, they require regular feeding and activities. I’ve cut way back on my bills, I don’t have cable TV, just internet, I let my Amazon Prime subscription lapse, we don’t go out to dinner often and when we do, it’s just for pizza or something similarly cheap, so I don’t know where else to cut back. It’s frustrating. I feel like a failure most of the time because of this lack of money situation. My kids are sick of hearing it. I’m sick of saying it. I feel like the proverbial hamster on a wheel – running and running and getting nowhere.

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