You were starting to hate me, weren't you? "That Jen," you were thinking. "She thinks she's so great. She's moving to a big house and has a cute little family and a job she really likes and she thinks her life is so great. Screw HER," you were thinking. I could smell the schadenfreude from here.
So it should make you feel better to hear that, out of nowhere, I had a perfectly shitty day today. And for no good reason, really. Or for lots of good reasons. I'm too tired to know which. All I know is that Addie has the croup again, and Nolie's pulling in three new teeth all at once, and I'm pretty sure there was no sleep in all the kingdom last night, not even for a princess like me.
I'm also pretty sure that I'm so behind at work I literally panic just thinking about it. I don't think I've ever had a panic attack, but I came pretty close to one today. I don't know what the solution is, but I know something's gotta give. What been giving are my waistline and my sanity, so I don't mean those. I mean I may need to renegotiate my responsibilities so that I don't blow my freaking top.
Eric and I woke up with some weird stomach flu on Sunday morning (which I also had Thursday night--what the hell?) and traded off watching the kids and trying not to vomit. This, for me, is the worst nightmare of parenting: all you want to do is crawl into bed and moan yourself to sleep, and instead you have to play Fairyland Dollhouse with your toddler, or feed mashed Organic Summer Vegetables to your baby, trying not to hurl when her formula-flavored burp explodes in your face. I was supposed to work Sunday, too, and that didn't happen, so now I'm even more behind. I carry my stress in my shoulders and stomach, so guess who feels nauseous again today?
A good hour of yoga would go a long way, but I seem to have given up all pretensions to spending time on my body.
And today, I couldn't get out from under that feeling, the feeling that no matter what, I would never dig out from inside this hole, would never enjoy life again, would forever feel pissed off at the world. I almost cried in front of my boss, which I never do. I had road rage, which I almost never have. I was Linus, with the dark cloud permanently perched above my head.
But then Eric came home, and I had a good cry in his arms and my gazillionth cup of coffee for the day, and he was 100% supportive about me crawling up into bed to finish some work for tomorrow, and he's making dinner and putting the kids down. Back from the brink I am, though the stack of student papers I have to get through tonight before I pass out from exhaustion may send me back. The internal calculus won't be quieted: how many weeks can I keep a stack of student essays before my end-of-semester evaluations take a hit? How many hours will it take me to get through 300 pages of student writing? Can I simultaneously eat lunch, prep class, and answer emails in the one hour I have between meetings and class tomorrow? Can I? Only if I don't need to pee at some point during the day. Or ever again.
The weirdest thing about all this is that I feel guilty for feeling stressed, which is just adding more stress. I feel bad for putting stress on my husband, feel bad for taking myself and my job so seriously, feel bad for not working harder last week and warding off this crisis, feel bad for not being more chill. I feel bad for writing this blog while my husband is downstairs making shrimp fra diavolo and talking with Addie about Eloise and her dog Wienie.
But you know what? Sometimes I have to just give it up, you know? Like at Addie's party--I need to ride the chaos sometimes rather than get swallowed up by it. And maybe also realize that there is only so much I can do and still maintain some shred of my humanity. If posting this little rant on my blog helps me to maintain, then so be it. It was a few minutes well spent. It's not worth cracking a tooth over.
I'm putting my mouthguard in just in case, though. And I'm counting the days until summer.