Feb 25, 2009

Coffee is my friend

So I've been staying up late again (I did well for a week or so) and tonight is no exception. I really wasn't planning on posting anything tonight because I didn't really have much to say. But I always feel better after I vent a little; it feels like I've dealt with it a little even if it's unresolved.

Tonight I'm half writing to myself, and half doing 7th grade math homework; the Teen decided to tell me ever so casually as she was running up to bed that she had homework she hadn't done and she'd do it tomorrow.

Um...no. We'll do it tonight.

Thirty five minutes of crying and staring at the blank paper (no exaggeration) and we finally got started. Two hours in we're on problem ten of twelve. I think she hopes I'll give in if she drags this out. What she doesn't know is I've become a pro at running all day on only a couple hours of sleep. Not just in the last six months, but in the months before when Mindy would wake me up doing the dishes at 3am or turning the TV up loudly in the middle of the night. The meds she took, when taken right, messed with her sleep. The fact that she wasn't one to follow directions only made it worse. She was usually up most of the night and dragging along all day.

But its nights like these that make me wonder if I'll ever get this whole parenting thing down. I should've asked her much earlier if she had homework. I always do, it’s the first question when I get home. But not tonight, tonight it just slipped my mind.

We seem to get really close to getting into a good routine and then something happens. Last week I was doing really well at getting up and getting the kids ready for school and asking about homework. Then Saturday night I had to work. Most anyone in IT can relate to the late night remote sessions. Well, this one lasted till almost 5am. So I was tired all day Sunday but I managed to keep up with the kids. Monday was court...no sleeping in. So the routine I had is all but gone, replaced with the chaos of trying not to screw up the day as I wake up late. Rush the kids to school, rush to work and try to make up time so I can leave at a decent hour.

Work can be a hazard in ways I never expected. Like when your coworkers talk about how spouses do ___ or ___; but when you interject a thought the subject quickly changes as if they are doing you a favor. And I have a list of things to get done, very realistically less than 10 lines of code to write for a change to our system. It's been sitting here for almost a week now. I just can't make myself focus on it like I should and the longer I wait the bigger it seems to get.

Why does grief take an everyday task and interject overwhelming emotion into it? And how long does that last, a year or five or forever? And it's not always the same emotion; sometimes its anger or more often remorse. And sometimes it's just overwhelming sadness.

The one that really gets me is the numbness; the "ability" to feel nothing at all. Everything becomes so surreal and, for me at least, it's almost always followed by guilt. I feel guilty for being numb as if somehow I'm supposed to feel bad all the time. I know I'm not, I don't even want to. But as much as emotions seem to be stirred by thoughts, the thoughts don't seem to control the emotions. I know what should make sense. I know how most people think I should feel and that makes me uncomfortable; when I think I should be sad and I'm not, or when I don't want to be engulfed in grief and I am. It's so counter intuitive!

It's not always a photo negative of what I think it should be; for our wedding anniversary I presumed I'd be down...and I was. The day was okay as I mostly kept busy ignoring the calendar but the evening really got me. After dinner with N&P, sitting in bed watching TV alone, the kids all asleep, and pictures of Mindy pregnant with Sugarbear sitting on my chest of drawers. Feeling like I have to be perfect for me; for the three of them. But it's frustrating that it doesn't always make sense and it's not always that expected.

Maybe I'm just tired or frustrated by the adoption. Or maybe I'm worried about work, money, and the normal stuff. Maybe it's because I'm trying to do three full time jobs (Dad, Mom, and Breadwinner) but whatever the reason this has been a tough month. I looked to this month thinking it would be a milestone of recovery...six months and we haven't fallen apart completely; at least not yet. But it was a milestone of grief instead and with all the important dates at the beginning of the month it just hit too hard too fast. I'm ready for the spring to start. Everything seems to get refreshed and feel new in the spring.

1 comment:

  1. Six months is a big deal. It's so close, yet so far. I think six months of grief and recovery go hand in hand. We need to hold on to Mindy with all that we have, yet continue to live every day to the fullest. I know Mindy would be there with her photos and writing in their scrapbooks (which we can still do) and nudging onto uncharted territory with excitement and fear of the unknown. She always loved life's surprises.