Friday, December 31, 2010

I am sitting in the car with screaming children. Just checking to see if this posts to my blog. I would like to do something today to close out the year.

Friday, 31 December, 2010

What a year it has been!!  I have gone through this year knowing that I must be where I am right now but it has been less enjoyable then I had hoped.   It has been a tough year.  My children have had to grow up more quickly than I would like and take on responsibilities that I haven't been ready for them to take on and I have been quite afraid.  It has led me to think about the role of faith in life and the function that it has.  I cannot forgive myself for what they have had to take on but if I said that I put it in God's hands it would be alright to so many.  It is a way of gaining some freedom from our own expectations of ourselves. I still haven't managed to do it but it's a thought.  It is a way of accepting they way things are.  I don't do that very well.  I think that we should always strive to get to the way things should be.  And yet as hard as I try I haven't gotten there yet.  Well, I haven't been able to stay there.  I've seen it but cannot stay present in it something always happens.  I have another approach to self forgiveness and I see my struggles as God's way of not letting me get too comfortable with where I am.  After struggling so much it just feels good to be home, in a place of my choosing, in MY space but I refuse to simply accept the struggle so I must continue to plan and to work and to move forward.

Right now the kids sleep behind me and I look around at the mess that I still have to find a place for.  It took us almost a full year to begin to get established.  A full year living with family.  A full year of them living with us.  'whew'  I now have 3 days to do all that I put on the back burner for the last few months.  I have class work to do for my online class and a website to finish creating for my students and extended lesson plans to create so that I can breathe when I get back to school.  I have to call a new babysitter, do laundry and sort clothes and pay rent, and put my utilities in my name and put gas in the car and write out a schedule so that I can continue to have time for me in the morning.

I want time to read something other than an education textbook.  I went to the doctor yesterday and had a 2 hour wait.  It was glorious.  I got to read without interruption.  Other people huffed and puffed and complained and rescheduled but for me it was a break, a moment in which it wasn't even within my power to do something else so I couldn't feel guilty.  I started to read 2 books in Spanish.  (I couldn't decide which I wanted to start with.)  Somehow reading La Llorona  in the OB/GYN office seemed wrong after I read the first two pages.  So I switched to a book called  Arrancame la Vida  I sill don't know which I will continue first or if I will even be able to pick them up again before summer.

It feels kind of nice to bring this year to a close.  I open new eyes to look upon 2011.  ...and I leap....

Saturday, September 4, 2010

I am here in this land of plenty and I am surrounded by things that I feel my children deserve, safe neighborhoods, healthy foods, adequate attention, technology.  I am willing to do all that I can to provide what they need to even the stakes.  I work hard and at the end of grueling weeks I don't know how I will make it.

There is good daycare out there, but not for my children.  I have to send my children into the home of someone I don't know.  I haven't done it yet and I am afraid.  The daycare that they are attending now costs a full 2/3 of my income.  I have to find us a home.

How do I find us a home and still afford childcare, good childcare, where the children are learning and their time is not wasted.  Daycare should not just be about keeping them safe it should also be about their intellectual growth.

...but not for me...

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The thing is ...

All of this is an attempt to heal.  I mistakenly gave my mind away with my heart and I am unsure how to retrieve it.  I do hope that it is not as damaged as my heart.    It is also an attempt to solve the problems of single motherhood and to "come back."

In my near future I have to find a home, find reliable child care, organize our lives, distance myself from my most recent hurts so that I can heal to love again another day 'sigh' family, and I have to live.  I have to invest in my life so that it pays off for my family.

The hardest things is being beholden to someone for the time that they give to my kids.  I would prefer never to have to ask anything of anyone because without even realizing it they either hesitate (and in that second while they are thinking I hear every kind of negative) or mention later how much they have done for us and I get a drowning feeling.  Emotional debt is the worse kind.

This is the year I will find my autonomy.  Divorce is sad but not being able to stand on your own two feet is the saddest, most pathetic feeling there is.  I know.

I am just learning to reconnect, not to be identified by responsibility.  ...

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

How? I just don't know anymore.

Today it all came full circle and again I felt that I needed him.  I know that no matter how much we need him he will not be with us because we cannot support him.

At the end of the day there was no one to help me do what needed to be done for my children and I must put work first because without that they have no roof and no food and so their other needs have to be put on the back burner and it hurts because I know what they need but I'm one person.

That man looked in my face and said to me that the son he has with his girlfriend needs him.  He said that she is not like me.  He said, "You do what you have to do."  He said that he knew that with me the children were fine and I don't believe that.  She puts food in his belly and pays the rent.  So the fact that I raise our 5 children without his help is fine?

What am I to do?  How do I teach them, protect them, and provide for them and still show them how much I love them?

Sunday, July 4, 2010

5 a.m.

I sit here and think about not thinking about him. I've let him go. That last fall off the wagon hurt. I'm still shaken by my ability to be foolish. I have to take drastic measures. I decided that I will never see or speak to him again. Last night I had to resist sending text explaining that to him. I wanted to explain to him what I need him to do but of course he mightn't want this to end as much as I need it to. He needs to sign the custody and divorce papers. He will get visitation even though it is the ultimate disrespect to have my children around the woman he cheated with. I just need for it to be over.

It was too much for him to hold me and tell me he missed me, the moment was so intimate, so sweet but someone else moved on his immigration case and so he would be beholden. She wouldn't know about the intimacies of the previous week. She wouldn't know what he asked me every time we spoke. She wouldn't know that I told him to stay with her if he had any doubts about being with me. I wouldn't ever know what it was to be loved by him without feeling like I had to earn it by making his life easier. It would always be about immigration, about money. I hadn't done enough for him. It didn't matter that I was raising his 5 children without his help. That, after all, isn't for him. She paid the rent and let him come home after cheating.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

When Nothing Makes Sense

It is 12:45am and 5 of 6 are vomiting, well, 4 of 6. One is suffering from a problem a bit lower in the digestive system. I'm tired but I dare not sleep. I look at the one who hasn't vomited and wonder when she will start. What to do? Crochet? Read? Look for my dream job? I can't even find words...

Friday, February 26, 2010

Between Worlds

I have for the first time truly had the blessing of watching my my child take his first steps. But he is not my only child. My excitement is exceeded only by his as he clumsily but with unparalleled determination explores the house and carries shoes and sundry articles from one area to the next tasting them along the way lest he miss out on a potential meal. Weeks have passed and though the floor still often meets with his backside he spend most of his time on his feet. No matter how many children one has these moments never cease to be miraculous.

But...

I cannot become a burden to another so I must soon look for work and take on all of the challenges of being a working single mother again. Worrying about the quality of daycare centers, worrying about paying them and still feeding the children, worrying about balancing the role of employee and of mother and feeling guilty when there is just not enough of you to go around is the lot of the single mother.

This for me has been a role of self deception. For the sake of sanity I cannot look at the whole picture for I then have to face the impossibility of it all. I handle only the moment. I wake up, stumble through my day hoping that what feels like failure to me doesn't appear as such. After a day of go, I find myself in bed and the loneliness sets in and I try to banish the bitterness with a prayer thanking God for all that didn't go wrong in the day. It is an empty, sad, and largely barren existence going through each day knowing that things MUST change and not having any idea how. ... at yet knowing that they had to because you were breaking. From sunup to sunset I am mother, a role that is all give and no take. If there were the means to be woman there would not be the time but as that part of me starves I die a bit every day.

I have died a bit everyday for so long that I don't know how to heal how to find myself, to create something that will be me. I have decided that I should no longer look longingly back because life is passing me by. The adventures of yesterday contributed to who I might have been but can only truly be lived once. I need a new adventure. One slice of the pie MUST be for me.

Between woman and mother there is a space. It is thick with regret and longing and while one inhabits that space they are nothing, neither woman nor mother but with all of the heartache of both.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Finding the Time

It is 1:24am and the children are asleep. I would be tired but I drank a cup of tea to be able to write. I am healing. I lost my voice when I met my husband and now that he is gone I feel that I should be able to get it back. So I start by expressing myself. There are times during the day that I am truly inspired but those times come when my hands are full and my chores aren't finished.

I just had a discussion with someone who would lift me up. That is someone who tries. You see he says to me that I am wonderful for raising my children and not abandoning them, for perservering. I stare blankly because for all of the options that I have that is not one of them and it doesn't make me wonderful. I spend my days worrying that I am doing all of this wrong. I feel guilty when I don't feel like giving hugs and when I didn't give the homework another look before I told them to put it in their bookbags. I feel guilty when they eat Ramen Noodles or even when they eat white bread. I feel guilty when days have gone by and we haven't really talked. And then there are the days when they are fighting that I know that I have failed them. When I think about it, I know what it is that they need. I am simply not always sure where to find it. I have long felt that a person must be loved to love properly.

When I think of a family I think of a perfectly balanced scale. ... but when I get the kids to bed I lie down and think of my husband and miss him so deeply. I miss feeling him at my back. I miss his voice. I miss sitting on the porch and drinking tea while he smoked. I often feel selfish but deep down inside there is a little voice screaming, "What about me?" .

I went to the home of the most amazing family the other day and left feeling so defeated. How are my children going to turn out and what could I have done to make them perfect? 'sigh' My writing here is a bit like my day, it meanders. What about me? I didn't think much today about how to be better than yesterday. Today I thought about how to make it to tomorrow. I wondered what to replace my husband's memory with.