In life we get these moments that string together and make us who we are. That’s what life is, a big run on sentence of moments. What’s strange about going through a divorce, is losing all of the good moments. Because obviously the relationship had them, right? I mean you did fall in love with each other. Back before you were blocking each other’s phone numbers and deleting their naked pics out of your phone. Right? Did you dream that? Moments snuggled up in the morning, before the kids were awake, whispering silly things to each other. GONE. Not just the moment, but THAT person is gone. It’s like the person you knew died, except you get to fucking fight with the ghost of them! And fault, ha! Fault is such an easy thing to assign. Truth is, it’s my fault. It’s his fault. It’s OUR fault. It was never one moment that led to the fall of Rome. It obviously wasn’t the good moments that led us down this road. It was the moments we walked our own roads instead of walking home, together. One team. Without being united, we stood as an easy target. Now I hear the hatred in every thing you say. It pierces me to know I made decisions that make you speak to me this way. But you’ve always spoken this way to me when you were angry, the only thing new is the hate. And I feel it. It cuts me. It’s doing what you want it to. But not for the same reasons. I used to hate knowing you were angry at me, but now I just hate that we hurt each other. I hate that you think you never mattered to me. I hope that subsides over time and you remember those mornings. Because I don’t want to feel like I wasted ten years of my life in something that ended in hatred. I want to learn from our mistakes. I want to make sure I water and feed the trust moving forward. I want to learn from the mean words that floated between us, because you really can’t take them back. I don’t want to spend another night in a panic attack on the bathroom floor because I said the wrong thing and you turned your phone off. You’re an addiction I can’t feed, it’s no good for me. I read your words again, I can tell I hurt you, because you’re slashing. I know you. I had to fly from here. I read your words. I have to delete them all. I can’t let them be all over my week anymore. I’m standing now. I can do this.
The lyrics pouring through my mind right now seem to bounce from Metallica to Phantom of the Opera to Garth Brooks. I’m all over the place. I painted my nails a deep dark purple, almost black. Fitting. I think about writing. I think of all the people that always seem to have something to say after I’ve written. I contemplate just buying a journal. Internalizing everything. But isn’t it already in there? Putting it in my journal doesn’t free it. Doesn’t let it go. Doesn’t let it reach out.
Words that never set themselves free from my brain, they plague me. They tie themselves down to my tongue and send nervous reactions through my mind. My eyes are darting back and forth looking for somewhere to verbally vomit. It all shuts down. The words bouncing now, around my mind. The coffee gives them jitters. I shouldn’t have given them coffee, now they’re just banging on things looking for an escape.
I check my watch. It’s 9 am. Lovely. Mon-fucking-day. Ahhhh Monday. I reach inside for inner peace, it washes over me slowly. I can feel it. My breathing calms, I focus on that. Smooth, gravel voice in my ears. Breathe. I must relish in this calm, because in mere moments I know there is someone just waiting to push me down, just to see how I react.
Hey Monday…. not today my dear, not today.
Recently I used one of the above words wrong. But… once I had done said crime… I began really diving into the difference between my conscience and being conscious and the gray state of my brain where they run smack the fuck into each other in a kaleidoscope of WTF and red blood spatter.
I was kindly provided the definition of conscious when I misused the word, and the definition has been plaguing the crap out of me for days.
Conscious: Aware of and responding to one’s surroundings. Awake. Having knowledge of something, aware. Mindful. Sensitive to.
Conscience: The part of the mind that makes you aware of your actions as being either morally right or wrong.
Funny… these words can and should be used together often. If you’re consciously making a decision then you are showing awareness… which means regardless of if what you are doing is right or wrong, you’re fucking doing it anyway. You consciously did that.
Anyway after my in depth correction (from a major pain in the ass
whose own intelligence levels I am really starting to question) anyway, after being corrected, my brain could not drop the subject matter. I began debating with myself the context of what one consciously does and where the conscience falls into the mix.
What I came up with was: I don’t care at all. I don’t care if your conscience is conscious currently. Because it’s obviously not. Your intervention into all things related to me, is unwarranted, and I’m done patty caking over it. Take your sweet, smothering, one sided opinions and consciously shove them back up your ass. Or swallow them. Or choke on them. My conscience does not care. My conscience is not concerned, or any longer conscious of your existence at all. Wow. I’m pretty sure I just used both words, right. A LOT.
Last night I was out of the house for a few hours at my weekly pool league match. Things were going ok. Meaning they were not too bad compared to the last few Tuesdays I’ve had. As luck would have it, or karma, or whatever bitch is stalking my life this week…. my daughters refused to let it just be an ok night. The text messages start rolling:
Hailey: MOM… Can I stay the night at Abby’s house tonight so that we can get ready for the first day of school together tomorrow?
Me: It’s the first day of school. It’s a MOM day.
Hailey: Ohhhh mmmyyyyyy gaaawwwdddddd mom. I ONLY HAVE THREE YEARS OF SCHOOL LEFT.
Me: And I’ve take a picture of you every single first day of school, every year… I have 3 left to take.
At this point the SHEER FUCKING PANIC HITS ME. 3 MORE???? I ONLY HAVE 3 MORE PICTURES TO TAKE???? I have already taken 10 first day of school pictures of her? Tears are welling up. My heart is racing.
Me: NOOOOOOOOO!!! You will be home! I have to take a picture.
Hailey: Sigh…. can’t you take it on the second day?
(I’m screaming internally now… in expletives and curly letters that I can’t even understand).
Me: No. Just no.
Hailey: Ugh. Fine.
Pictures of her this morning turn out…. as they always do on Hailey’s first day of school.
Then…. there’s Faith. SOOOOOOOOO…… Our texting starts last night. She’s in a great mood. Chelsi is twisting her hair in knots for her to sleep on so she has gorgeous curls this morning. She’s elated. Until:
Faith: Mom… can I ride to school with Madi tomorrow? Her mom has time to drive her to school.
I’m instantly annoyed at all moms that have the ability to drive their kids to school, go to work, feed them, and get to sports practices on time… WTF am I doing wrong… I huff)
Faith: WHHHHYYYYYYYY???? They live in our neighborhood mom.
Me: Fine. But if Madi is sick and you miss the bus cause she isn’t going to school, then you’re walking.
Faith: God, Mom; Madi’s mom would totally still take me to school.
I’ve lost the battle. Of courrrrssseeee she would. My energy to keep arguing with the WHHHHYYYYY Monsters is gone.
Faith: By the way, your clothes are in the dryer, and it’s not drying them. I think it’s broken. Goodnight! I love you!
Sigh. HEAVY SIGH. FUCKING UGGHHHH)
This morning I wake up and realize I didn’t check the dryer when I got home. Sooooo my clothes for work are still wet. Yay. I make sure the girls are up. They are, Faith is mid panic because her hair is curled tooooooo tightly and I must fix it immediately. Hailey is growling in the bathroom we now share, and I am scared to enter.
Ahhhh, my sweet little dog, she looks like a safe someone to say good morning to first. I chance it. She doesn’t bite me. Small victory.
Time to try to get a few pictures of both girls together. This should go swimmingly. Faith is immediately standing too close to Hailey, there’s hair being pulled. Anger. Death. Blood, blood, blood. Ugh. I might have taken one that didn’t suck before Hailey’s bus came, luckily. I was just about to use my moves learned from Kung Fu Panda.
Sometimes there just aren’t words for what is going on around you. You just gotta go, get in the car, turn on some Rage Against the Machines, or Jewel… whatever… you don’t know me. And let their day, be whatever it unfolds into today.
Somehow after all the expletives and crazy thoughts I had this morning, sitting at my desk, my brain is still wrapped around how their days are going, how their friends liked seeing them again, if anything crazy has changed… and I can’t wait to see them over dinner tonight. As they roll their eyes and look at me as if I am from another planet.
Cause I’m old. And… ugh… so… just…. blah MOM.
I know that the age old saying is, “Parenting is the most challenging, rewarding… blah blah blah,” thing that you’ll ever do. I know that it’s true because any given day, moment, second… you can go from wanting to strangle a child, to laughing at them, to crying for them, back to fuming angry. They won’t understand. They will stand there looking at you with hate, confusion, annoyance on their faces.
The last 2.5 months in our household have been chaotic, psychotic and well…exhausting to say the least.
Ryan has moved into his SENIOR year of school. He has delayed enlisted in the Air Force, he will be headed to basic training next August. He spends a huge majority of his days running the drill teams for ROTC, waiting for Hailey to drive them both home, working at Hardee’s part time, and trying desperately to learn Spanish 2.
These kids leave dirty food bowls under their beds. Wet towels on the floors. Lights on, in every room they walk through. They’re snarky. Sassy. Grouchy. Rough around the edges. They NEEEEEEEDDDDDD this. They NEEEEEEEEED that. $30. $75. $650. $200. $1240. $3. When you’re a little late handing it to them, they take it, put it in their bag, look at you like you need a better calendar, or a personal assistant, and they move on. Maybe throwing a thank you over their shoulder.
I respond with, “Could you please…..” and trail off, because they’re already gone. “Never mind,” I whisper as a door slams, somewhere.
But then… there’s these moments. These moments of pride. They’re so big, and so full, that when they happen, and my eyes fill up with tears, I just stand there looking at them, bursting inside…. happy.
Last night was our high school’s Homecoming football game. Finally, what Hailey had been preparing for since mid July, was going to happen. Two weeks of band camp in July, in 100 degree temperatures, nonstop for 10 hours a day. 4-5 hours a day of practices, Monday, Tuesday, and Thursdays of every week since school started. The football games they had already attended, where they go to school at 7… stay after school, travel to games… get home at 11pm. The show was going to happen.
Meanwhile, this grown-up…. looking… beautiful little boy of ours, in full dress uniform is marching across the field. He’s the tallest. The handsomest. He’s shining. Perfect step. Shiney shoes. Crisp, flawless blue uniform. The ROTC presents arms for the Homecoming Court to walk through.
Across town, on a soccer field, beneath the lights… our baby is protecting a goal. Full pads, gear… etc. She organizes the field. She keeps the girls together. They love her, they listen to her, they rally for her. If she gets a bad attitude, they lose. She affects them. I’m not even sure that she knows. She will have anywhere from 10-50 goals shot on her tonight. She may miss one. That ONE will haunt her.
Russell and I, went to the football game, unfortunately missing soccer, but watching the score posts from our team parents.
The football game unfolded like a movie. The air was chilly. The lights were twinkling, blinding in spots. The stands were packed. Bands were battling. Both teams were PUMPED UP. This is ALABAMA, ya’ll. Football is LIFE here. We lead the entire game, of course until the end of the 4th quarter. In the last 1:30 of the 4th, the score became a dreaded 14-17. The fans fell silent.
You’re not supposed to lose HOMECOMING.
The other team, was PSYCHED!! Their band was dancing. Cheerleaders were taunting. Players were jumping, smacking each other, screaming… they could taste fear, and a win. It was seconds away.
We answered with a 40 yard drive off of our first drive.
The fans were back in it. The clock was moving fast.
Suddenly we are in the Red Zone. Now, we can’t connect anything. Their defense is amped. Our hands are all shaking. Some of those boys, will never play football again after this season. This is their last, BIG… game.
With 3 seconds left on the clock, the QB can find no one, he runs into the end zone. The stadium erupts. They take the win. The band is roaring. We are cheering… moments.
Captured moments. As I am watching, there are tears in my eyes. Flashbacks to games of blue and gold from my own childhood. My friends around me in the stands. Some of them now passed away. All of them miles, and miles away. I look around me now, at this generation. My daughter, sparkling with pom poms and glitter. My son, his last year at home, his grown-up personality starting to show.
I can hear their small feet running across tile, chasing each other through the house. I’m yelling at them. I can hear them giggling in the kitchen playing a board game. I hear the argument, because they’re all 3 competitive and cannot lose. Or be wrong. Or be nice, most times. Then I hear the I love you’s. I can smell the strawberry shampoo of childhood. It hangs in the air, with this winning touchdown. It kaleidoscopes around me in the chilly September air.
I wasn’t going to have kids. I wasn’t going to do this. I was going to travel. To see things. But to see all things, in those moments of kaleidoscope color around you, in the smells of life, in the crisp air… is to really be… traveled.