I have this way of dealing with life at the moment. I just divide it up into these blocks. There are the blocks that are mindless, things I have to do and can almost do in my sleep (strangely, school is one of these blocks). There are the blocks that are sleep; they’re short. There’s the blocks that are art…I try to fit one in a day. There’s exercise and meditation and a hike a week. There’s the grocery store. I divide each day up again. The block that gets me up and out the door for school. The block that deals with the time right after school. Blocks that aren’t already filled or designated, I make sure there’s a plan for those, because it’s the fucking down time that messes with me. There are some blocks I used to have that I don’t have any more. They’re the hardest to fill…and they need to be filled. It’s kind of ironic, because it’s not like I have time to add groups of new friends or activities, but I almost have to in order to make sure there’s no down time for the brain to sink lower. I need to keep it occupied.
That said, those of you who are parents (or just empathetic to parents) know that you can plan all you like, but life is gonna bitchslap you some days. Tuesday the girlchild had some things that looked like bug bites. She showed them to me, they were itchy, there were like three of them. Wednesday, there were more, but they were moving around and we talked about washing her sheets this weekend (except Tuesday night, she wasn’t at my house), still thinking bug bites. Thursday, they were somewhat worse, and I decided they were hives. We talked about stress (she is still making up work from her surgery AND AP tests start next week…good enough reasons to BE stressed, but she said she wasn’t). We talked about food and soap and lotion and all that good stuff. Nothing new. Apparently Thursday night (again at her dad’s) was bad, but eventually they went away and she went to sleep. When I texted her during the day on Friday and suggested the doctor, she said no way, it was fine, she was better. I got home Friday, she was not home yet, she slammed in the door about 15 minutes later yelling for me, lifted her shirt, and holy shit. Hives everywhere. Solid. Yeouch. I called the nurse, who asked 17 questions, then sent us to Urgent Care. Meanwhile, the kids have been watching way too much House (and I’ve already seen them all), so we were diagnosing her. (Lupus…no, not really). We took her in…you know it’s bad when the staff at Urgent Care gasp when they see it. Anyway, a couple of tests later and we still know nothing, but she has Benadryl in her and they’re prescribing an epi-pen. Sure enough, she was asleep (love Benadryl) by the time she got home, pretty much, and the hives were gone by midnight. Hopefully, whatever freakish thing that caused it is gone, out of her system. Impressive bumpiness, though.
So that was not a block of time that I had planned. It never is, when you’re a parent. I do think that most parents (the ones who pay attention) are much better at dealing with life because of shit like that. You have your afternoon/evening planned, and hives just fucks it all to hell and back. Seriously. It happens all the time, so often, that you always have a contingency plan. It’s how I survive. The back of my brain is always trying to budget time here or there to deal with bumps in the road like that. Like What Will You Do if the House Floods with Human Waste? And you already have a plan for that…and the zombie apocalypse…and random visitors.
So I dealt. Ordered dinner instead of cooking it. Did a little grading, but not a lot. Blew off the exercise in favor of meditation. Made it to bed at a reasonable hour because I knew I had a hike…a hike that might get moved due to weather issues. No problem. I can adapt. I just roll with it. I’m not always happy with the adjustment, but in the end, and I don’t know again if this is the depression or the meditative practices talking, I just need to go with the flow. It’s not the end of the world. There will be another day for ironing fabric. One day of missing exercise will not end my life. So we joked with the doctor about how she needed to send her staff over to check BOTH houses for mold and drugs, and girlchild was probably lying about sex or drugs, because they always do, and when would they start random medication? Yeah. We do watch too much House.
So no art last night. I did hike this morning…interesting story. I’m now three hikes behind on the blog! Aack! It’s OK, one is a repeat…the morning hike did not turn out to be strenuous enough to count for exercise, so I dragged the boychild and the two dogs (girlchild and ex are in Lancaster for National Cup, which no, she is not playing in…just supporting her team) out on a long, bitchy hike…
Because I’m nice like that. Jake on the left, Calli on the right. This is Mt. McGinty, take 2. I think I can do it by myself now. Maybe. More on that hike later. Whenever later is (did I mention grades are due on Tuesday and I’m not done with them? Whatever. They’ll get done. It’s not the end of the world.). The dogs were extremely tired by then and were apparently huddling together for support.
Then we came home and I managed the depressoid hour of grocery shopping (Saturday night just sucks bigtime. The only plus is that it’s quiet and there are no lines). Drove to Sonic for dinner, because there was no way I was cooking. Plus I am feeling down and out and overwhelmed by shit that I can’t control, so I have not been eating great the last few days. But I got time with the boychild, and he’s moving away to college in a few months, and he won’t call, text, or email when he’s gone, so I’m kinda saving these moments up with just him for later. For when he’s gone. Makes me sad to think of it, but he’s an adult now and this is what he needs to do. I’ll be OK. I’m not a child. I can handle him leaving. I’m just sad about it. It’s OK for me to be sad about things. It better be OK, because I feel it a lot. It’s OK to not be happy when things don’t feel happy. It’s not abnormal. It’s not broken.
OK, I AM broken, but not because I am sad. I am sad because I am broken. Or I am sad AND I am broken. Hard to say.
Then I graded for a while, trying to get all the loose ends tied up, or at least enough of them to make a difference. Or something. I still need to input everything, but I’ll deal with that. It’s not the end of the world.
I feel like I already survived the end of the world. Like three or four times. Godzilla wasn’t there. No one was. Just me.
So then I started ironing, awfully late. Later than I had originally planned for today, but today’s plans came apart at the seams at about 5:20 this morning, or maybe even last night, and so I just two-stepped it and dealt. I’m good at that.
I’m through the 400s…into the 500s. I could have started ironing the 500s, but didn’t feel like starting it. Depressing subject matter. Couldn’t look at it. Need some distance from it. Maybe tomorrow night. I just ironed all the leftover bits from the body…the heart and the nipples and the eyeballs and the hair and the eye she’s holding onto, or is she trying to catch it? Who knows.
Tomorrow is gym and a meeting and chaos and grading and exercise and meditation and maybe ironing. Hopefully ironing. A little bit of progress a day makes it better…
It does. This is the pile of fabrics used so far…I’m not even a third of the way through, so there will be lots more.
There is a lot on my plate at the moment. I’m trying to divide it up into doable chunks, things I can handle. There are a couple of things I can’t deal with at all. So I’m not. It’s not the most mature way of living my life, but it’s what I can do at the moment. Really, there should be times in your life when everything is smooth sailing and then times when you are challenged to even get through the next 10 minutes, but that challenge…that’s probably what makes you who you are. Not how you deal when it’s easy…but how you deal when there’s too much and you have no help and stupidity reigns around you. That’s when it’s important. And if you’re a selfish asshole when that’s going on, then you suck. I’d like to believe karma will kick your ass, but I have no evidence of that.
So yeah. I’m ironing. I’m making art. What more do you need to know.