I Need A Break
It’s been two months. Two very long months of single parenting with no break. No time off, no time alone. This introvert is going stark raving mad. I tried to have the kids all spend the night with their friends once. Of course the older two had a blast. Shane ended up spending less than two hours with his friend then crying to come home. It wasn’t even 5:30 when he called me to go pick him up.
I’d taken him to the park to meet our friends there. I hung out and talked to the mom for about an hour. I’d made plans to go shopping with Sean’s mother Rose, so I took off and picked her up. We got to the store around 4:30 and an hour later, I got the call to go pick him up. I told my friend that I needed to get my hair cut but I’d be by to pick him up after that.
I had less than two hours to myself. Sure it was a nice break, but I only really got to enjoy one hour of it because for the last hour, I knew my time was up and I had to pick Shane up before heading home. I didn’t get any time alone in my house. None. Sure, it was great to be able to go shopping with Rose, but I need time alone in my own space. And I definitely need more than just a couple of hours.
I’m finding that I have less patience with the kids. Shane talks almost non-stop and his voice is just grating on my nerves right now. I’m sick of everything being a huge battle with him. Bedtime is horrific. Last night, he would not lay still, would not stop talking, and would just not go to sleep. Serenity was sitting in his room with us because she’d been in there talking to me while I waited for Shane to use the bathroom and brush his teeth. With each syllable Shane uttered I could feel my composure slipping. I could feel some deep buried rage coming out. I was just so angry!
I looked at Shane and told him that if he didn’t just stop, lay still, and go to sleep, I was never sitting with him again. I told him I was two seconds away from doing things I didn’t want to do because I was angry and told him that I’d leave first and he could just fall asleep alone. I gave him one final chance to follow the rules and go to sleep. I also warned him that if he didn’t and I left, I would not sit with him anymore at bedtime.
He would not stop and I got up and walked out of the room. When Shane started fussing more, Serenity moved up beside him and started playing classical music on her computer. She took over parenting him to sleep without a word. She just stepped in and did what she felt she needed to do. I had massive Mom guilt for that. She shouldn’t have to step in to parent when I am seconds away from losing it. I hate that I feel like I’m failing so much that my daughter has to “tag in” to parent when I simply can’t anymore.
Shane fell asleep within 15 minutes and I was sitting here, trying to stuff the anger and the guilt. I finally figured that I needed to get out of the house. Since Steve couldn’t meet me, I figured I’d take a walk and see if I could walk off some of the negative energy. I asked Serenity if I could borrow her iPod, got my walking clothes and shoes on, and took off like a shot.
I got lost twice. Since I tend to retreat into my own little world anyway, I have a tendency to really turn inward when I’m ragey and trying to work through it. I was simply walking and texting a bit when I looked up and had no idea where I was. I thought I knew which street I was on because I hadn’t remembered turning anywhere but I do things on auto-pilot when I’m in my own world. So I simply kept walking, knowing it wouldn’t be long until I came to an intersection and had street names to tell me where I was.
When I finally came to an intersection, I realized I’d gone further on that street than I normally ever did while on my walks and that was the reason I didn’t know where I was. I turned up the street, heading toward home. Again, I got lost in thought so when my phone rang, it startled me. It was Steve. By that point, I could barely talk because I was breathing so heavily. Steve told me to slow down and take some time to breathe. What he can’t understand is that the demons nipping at my heels would close in on me if I slowed down.
At that point, I once again realized I had no clue where I was. It was dark enough that I couldn’t clearly make out the street signs, so I had to get pretty close to the sign in the intersection before I could see where I was. Before thinking, I just said, “I have no fucking clue where I am – AGAIN!” That’s the first time I’ve said that word to Steve. I wonder what he thought of that. I told him I had to go because I had to figure out how to get home. I knew which section of the neighborhood I was in but wasn’t exactly sure of what streets connected to what other streets as I was rarely in this part of the neighborhood. I simply didn’t know the names of the streets and how they connected together. I figured I’d walk in the direction of home and I’d find it eventually.
I ended up doubling-back on myself and walking about three blocks more than I had if I’d have known which streets connected. I came home and mapped my course and found that I’d waked 2 miles. It didn’t help. It didn’t make me feel better. It didn’t give me any answers to getting the break I so desperately need. I didn’t escape my demons.
I need a break. I just have no idea of how to get one.