Not Measuring Up

Today I f-ed up really bad. Like spectacularly bad. Let me set the stage for you.

My sister comes at 6:45, just like we’d planned, to watch Isa until my in-laws come and get her. I leave for work at 7am, a little later than I wanted but I’ll still make it with plenty of time. There is no rain for the first day in almost a week and the freeways are surprisingly clear. I’m making great time and am listing all the things I’ll get done in the twenty minutes I have before class starts.

Then my phone ring. It’s the mom of the girl I drive to school some days. But why would she be calling me?

I think you can probably guess where this is going.

Cue expletives. Cue apologizing profusely. Cue exiting and heading back north.

We ended up meeting at an exit half way between her house and where I was when I’d gotten the call. Luckily we didn’t hit too much traffic until we were off the freeway and we (just barely) made it to our first classes on time.

The poor girl, who evidently has a lot of anxiety about arriving to school late, wouldn’t speak one word to me in the car. I apologized a dozen times but she never answered me. And fair enough.

I spent the entire car ride trying not to cry openly and stealthily wiping tears away from under my glasses.

Later, at school, the secretary called my room to ask if I’d remembered to bring snack for the staff room. I think you can guess where this is going. I’ll be bringing bagels and cream cheese to school on Monday to make amends.

Now I know that people make mistakes. I know people forget things. But you have to understand, I live my life enveloped in a thin fog of anxiety, constantly worried that I’m forgetting something very important and have no idea. When it actually happens, like today (or the time I realized my car insurance renewals weren’t sent to me and so I’d been driving without coverage for almost a month) my confidence in myself is absolutely shattered. It will takes months for me to build it up again. In the meantime I’ll be constantly semi-panicked that I’m unwittingly neglecting someone or something in my life, to the detriment of myself, my family or people I care about.

In the meantime I will be relying on my phone, and an extensive system of calendar notes and alarms, to ensure that I don’t forget to pick that poor girl up again.

Speaking of neglecting someone in my life, it seems I’m deeply entrenched in my tri-annual I’m-missing-out-on-my-daughter’s-childhood-freak-out. Last night at dinner, as my father-in-law related all the amazing things Isa is learning and how she’s fundamentally different each and every time she comes over, I suddenly realized that he probably knows her better than I do right now. He spends 25 of her waking hours a week with her while only spend 15 plus the 15 waking hours of the weekend (my daughter sleeps a lot, evidently).

And he’s right, she is changing so fast. By the time summer comes, and I get my two months with her, she’ll be a completely different person and I will have missed more than half of the second year of her life. It’s making me cry just to type that. I wish so badly I could be with her every day. My heart aches to leave her every morning. I thought working part time I’d get more time with her but she takes these insanely long naps in the afternoons and while that is helpful for me to get grading and chores around the house done, it’s not great for me seeing my daughter. Sometimes being a WOHM just guts me. This is one of those times.

The reality is, it’s my fault I can’t be with her. If I had taken better care of my money. If I had chosen a different career, maybe I could be home with her right now. But I didn’t and I can’t. There are so many aspects of myself that disappoint me right now. I’m unimpressed with how poorly I handled being a “single mom” for five short days. I’m crap at keeping our house in decent shape. I can’t/refuse to cook. I’m barely getting by as a teacher, creating lesson plans on the spot and taking weeks to grade papers. My relationships is flailing (though things on that front do, finally, look better). I struggle with juggling my family and job responsibilities. I feel like in every area of my life I’m falling short. I look around and see other people surviving, even thriving, in much more difficult situations and yet I can barely function in what is really not that difficult of a position. I’m completely forgetting about commitments I made to people for christ’s sake! Evidently I’m not even trustworthy anymore. Do you know how that makes me feel?

So yeah. I’m feeling pretty ashamed of myself today. Maybe it’s CD1 hormones ravaging my body and mind. Maybe it’s missing my man (god do I miss him). Maybe it’s mourning my friend’s father. Maybe it’s just general fatigue, wearing me down. Maybe it’s missing out on yoga all this week. Maybe it’s just that I’m not measuring up. I don’t know.

Before I go I wanted to thank everyone for their helpful advice on yesterday’s post. Hearing all your view points really helped me get a better sense of what I should do. Obviously today’s fiasco has shaken me and I’m not sure what my final decision will be. Right now I have a “phone interview” on Monday and then they’ll send me an article to copy edit. I’m going to see how I like doing that and if I feel good at it. Then I’ll have a long talk about all of this with Mi.Vida and we can decide what works best for us. Who knows, maybe the choice will be made for me when they don’t actually offer me the position. Until I know it’s actually my decision to make, I’m not going to stress too much about it.

Thoughtful Thursdays: I wonder…

Sometimes I wonder what goes on in that little head of hers.

When she looks at something so intently.

When she follows her father until he disappears around the corner and she cranes her neck to keep him in view.

We shared so much of ourselves for that short time, it’s hard to remember that she’s truly her own person now.

¿En qué piensas mi amor? What are you thinking my love?

En algo maravilloso, ¿no? I bet it’s something wonderful.

(This post brought to you by (what I anticipate to be) a pretty awesome post that is not yet ready (but will be posted next week), a tree-trimming truck and a very curious little girl).

Working Mama Mondays: A Little Something to Share

I have no time to post today but I wanted to share a little something from my SIL’s AMAZING blog that she posts twice a day for me and Mi.Vida. She includes pictures and videos and tells us what our baby bear and squeaky mews are up to while we’re away. Today she posted this amazing shot of Isa and Squeaks waiting at the window to say goodbye to daddy (a morning tradition). It makes my heart stop it’s so breathtaking.

Thank you SIL! Your blog gets me through the days!

AND LATER TONIGHT – The reveal! I will be explaining the WHAT of Second Hand Happiness!

Slow Days, Not Much to Say

Oh the weekends. A tough set of day for the blog-o-sphere-inclined like myself. Not many posts up. Nothing popping up in my reader. I specifically pruned my blogroll so I’d have more time and now that I do, I can’t fathom how to spend it. Surely there is more to me than my blog and the blogs I follow.

I’m still feeling overwhelmed by shitty-thing-number-three from yesterday. The one I can’t blog about. Or talk about. Because I have no way of getting it out of me it festers, and I can’t see past it to write, or say, anything else.

So in the absence of something else I’ll show you a video of my darling daughter and my mischievous mews. They are a pretty cute pair. It’s a little long so feel free to stop it whenever you want (like I would ever know if you didn’t! Ha!). There is some cute close-ups at the end though.

PS – My daughter taught herself peek-a-boo this morning and I have to admit, it warmed my heart in ways I didn’t think it could be warmed right now. She truly is a miracle.

And now, on to the point of this post: