It's not about time. When it comes to time, I can use my mad crazy 1992-tetris skills and make all the activities I have to, fit into the mere 24 hours we are each granted in a single day. I can sometimes even manage to schedule 7 hours for sleep. Then, when I'm done, and realize I seriously just SCHEDULED bed time for myself, that's when I know it's just too much. Sometimes, in my head, I even categorize my morning activities into time slots. Get up at 7, take the dog out, bring the dog in, give the dog a treat, feed the dog, feed the kid, get the kid clothes, get in the shower, wash my hair, wash my face, get out of the shower, make the kid put on the clothes you got him 20 minutes ago because he is walking around your bedroom still in his pjs, dress self, dry hair, make up, teeth brushed, kid's teeth brushed, take dog out again, bring dog in again, make kid's lunch, make self lunch, get kid's book bag together, get own book bag together, get dog in the kennel, get kid in the car, get self in the car hopefully with keys in hand saving one of the many trips back into the house for forgotten items, get kid to school by 9, get self to school by 9:15...
On paper it's daunting. As a mom, it's routine. I look at this morning and I think "this is pie." This is what every other mom goes through every single day. Not to mention working moms. I mean, I am in school full time, 4 days a week. So I certainly am doing my fair share of being a working mom, but to throw a commute into this mix would only exacerbate an already ridiculous progression. And when you add in all the evening commitments into the equation, it just doesn't add up. Tuesday night tball practice, thursday night trivia, friday swim lessons, saturday afternoon games, church on sundays. And my husband is a contract worker on top of his full time job so he is constantly doing work at home when we should both be relaxing. Forget my homework. What homework? What study time?
I know that other people have it worse. I know some schedules are far crazier than this. But I'm not other people. And I just can't do it. Today at school, I broke down because some 18 year old girl told me I was being rude. In my defense, I most definitely was not. In her defense, she's an idiot. But the point is, I could care less what some little teen-ager thinks or says about me. It doesn't matter. It isn't what I was upset about. I was upset about feeling so tired and so exhausted and so defeated that one little tap on my foundation would make the whole darn world come crashing down. I'm being a little dramatic. I paid the girl no mind and made it to my car in time for no one to see me cry. I shed exactly 5 tears, let the rest roll off my back, and ate my lunch with my friends. But the overreaction just made me realize, I haven't got it all together anymore. And while I know that's okay, knowing it's okay doesn't make it any easier to deal with in this moment. My emotions and my energy are all so scheduled and so itemized that if even one thing goes wrong, the entire train will wreck. I leave room for maybe 3 seconds of movement, and after that the ties start to break.
I used to wonder why people did this to themselves. Now I realize, we often have no choice. When we signed the kid up for tball, we didn't know my school schedule would be so crazy. And to be honest, tball is a nice releif for him from the stress that is often thickening the air at home. He is also in swim lessons once a week, but this was purely a safety thing. Again, life to do over: don't do tball and swimming in the same season. But it's out there now and there is no getting around it. And I honestly didn't know school would be THIS hard this quarter. I breezed through the last almost-year of my life with straight A's. And I literally mean breezed. I studied pretty darn hard for A&P:101 but there's no passing that class (much less getting an A) without working your butt off. And here I am struggling to keep my B in skills while I listen to children in my class tell me I'm rude for answering a question.
It's not about time. It's about energy. It's about strength. It's about patience. And I just don't have enough to go around right now. So what do I do? Well, blog apparently. But really, I just pray about it. And I remember that this is just a chapter in my life. It will be over soon and all of this will come to an end, just like all times come to an end, both good and bad. There was a short chapter after the kid was born when we ate ramen noodles and PB sandwiches almost every meal. Because that's what we could afford. It was then that I was introduced to vienna-sausage sandwhiches and the filipino version of pork and beans (which consists of beans that happen to have some pork fat in the can heated over rice). And those times were really hard. When every dollar you spent on yourself was one less dollar you had for formula and diapers, you looked at money a little differently. But you know what? Those times passed. That chapter had a beginning and an end. As does this one. So I'm gonna take a really deep breath and make it through the next six months. It may not be easy... scratch that... it's gonna suck. But the reward in the end is almost immeasurable. And I will look back on it the same way I am looking back on the other tough times: not with remorse or sorrow, but just with gratitude. I'm grateful those times are over. And I'm grateful for all I learned. And I'm grateful for all that I've become as a result of all that I've been through.