Well, this weekend was a bit of a set-back in my “feeling mostly happy” streak. It all started with the rain. We Californians aren’t very keen on rain. We’re not used to it. It rained a lot on Friday, complete with wind and flooding. Guys, I don’t even own an umbrella, that’s how weather-spoiled I am.
After teaching all day, I had four stops before I finally had groceries and all the kids (two of whom were sick) and was able to get home, drenched, cold, and getting sick myself. I fumbled with all of our stuff and entered the house through the garage and laundry room. That’s when I found curtain rods on the ground, white powdery stuff all over, and a groveling dog. I thought, OMG, somebody broke into my house. Upon further inspection I noticed paw prints and realized it had something to do with the dog. When I walked further into the house and down the hallway, that was when I saw what had happened. Cue banshee scream.
This is my bedroom door frame. It looked like a crime scene with dog blood everywhere. The dog also took the liberty of pissing all over the baby’s room and getting white paw prints all over my house. Apparently my dog has storm-triggered psychological problems. Psychological problems I don’t have time for. Do you know how tiring it is being an only parent? Dogs creating more work for me is that last thing I want to deal with (sorry to the animal lovers out there, but this is about survival). I told the dog she was about to be reunited with her beloved owner Kenneth (my husband) and had to keep the kids away from the nails and splinters that were everywhere.
I just had the house cleaned the day before. Did I mention it was Friday afternoon and I was getting sick? It took me over an hour to clean it all up, and in the midst of all of this my washing machine broke.
Cue complete and utter breakdown.
It’s all fine and dandy when things are going well, but the true test of your mental state is when things go wrong. This is when the weight of my shitty reality comes crashing down on me. I am alone. All of this insane responsibility is my problem. Nobody else’s. Alone, alone, alone. This wasn’t how things were supposed to be. I did not sign up to be in charge of all of this BY MYSELF. This wasn’t part of the deal.
It took me a good 36 hours of simmering in my anger and pity party before starting to come back to normal. Today was mostly okay.
Yesterday, the kids and I re-watched the documentary Happy. I remember a scene in the movie where an expert said it isn’t that happy people don’t have adversity (I’m paraphrasing here), it’s just that they have good coping mechanisms and return to their baseline faster. Something like that. I felt guilty for getting so angry over the dog and washing machine incidents. I was snapping at the kids. Less patient. I felt like a horrible beast of a person. It’s nice to be reminded that those kinds of reactions are normal, but we don’t have to get stuck there.
Today I did a lot of reading and playing with the kids.We recently got a bunch of super cool books.
As overwhelming as it sometimes feels, I’m happy to have these kids in my life. We’re the perfect team.
Almost a year ago, we were all in Playa del Carmen, Mexico for my sister’s wedding.
We spent Valentine’s Day at the all-inclusive resort. I had no idea it would be our last. This year, I spent it as an only mother of three.
(I bought them a heart-shaped cake. As you can see, the baby was quite enthralled.)
Part of me feels like the cruelest joke in the world was played on me. I got to get married and have my family, and then the rug got pulled from beneath me. Just kidding. You get to be single and alone. Here’s a mountain of responsibility. Figure it out.
I’m okay with there not being a solid reason for any of this. The universe doesn’t owe me anything. I get it. It doesn’t make it feel any better, but I can accept that.
I want to be happy. My kids deserve happiness. I deserve happiness. All I know is I am too stubborn to give up. So I keep going, trying to stay busy, keeping an open-mind, and just moving forward. That’s the best I can do.