Have you ever had one of those nights? Your kids drive you batshit crazy and you wonder why you thought it had ever been a good idea to have them in the first place and you entertain vague thoughts of selling them for science experiments or seeing if there’s a passing circus who needs small, loud, shrieky people?
But then finally, finally, they are asleep and the house is quiet, so you sit down and you get a glass of wine and you start to watch Top Chef or some other sort of pseudo-intellectual, you’re-only-fooling-yourself-because-it’s-on-Bravo-and-ohmygodEricRipertEricRiperEricRipert *ahem* and you zone out for a while. And maybe you have another glass of wine because, damn, Eric Ripert is doing his sexy French smirk thing right there on your screen and who cares what they’re cooking as long as he keeps smirking and talking? And you’re content. Not happy, not wildly excited, just…content.
And then you realize that you have to pee, so you go upstairs, to the bathroom that needs cleaning, and after doing your thing, you wash your hand (as you always should) and you look at yourself in the mirror and wonder “Who the fuck is that?” This woman, with her hair pulled back in a pony tail and her skin, not wrinkled, not yet, but definitely not young and dewy and fresh. Who the hell is that? And why is she looking back at me with those eyes? Sad, worried, haunted, scared eyes?
I never look at myself in the mirror if I can at all help it, but sometimes I stop, while washing my hands, and look. And I don’t like what I see. I don’t want to have a frinkle between my eyebrows (*frinkle – frown wrinkle – it is so a word). I don’t want to look unhappy and scared and burdened. I want to look happy. Content with my life.
When is that going to happen? Will it ever happen? Will I be able to do this alone, be the parent all. the. fucking. time? And be content with that? Or will I always have this lost, haunted, scared thing going on? Because I don’t like it. But I also don’t know how to stop it. Can I hold on to the good things? Boo diving in the pool today, so proud of herself for getting the diving ring, The Bug running to me and giving me a hug every time I walk in the door, even if I’ve only gone out to the car to retrieve something? Why are those things not enough to make up for the shit times? The times Boo gets into my hair colour and pours some of it on her head, the times The Bug has a meltdown because I won’t let her have a popsicle at 7:30 in the morning? Am I ever going to be mostly happy? I don’t expect to be happy all the time, that thought is ridiculous, but I would like to think that things get better, that I won’t always be this stressed out and annoyed all the time. It has to happen sooner or later, right? Because this shit? It’s killing me.