Wednesday, May 28, 2008

No Answers

Thank you for all your comments on the last post. Mom's not a bad writer, huh?

In a "Sex and the City" episode from either the fifth or sixth season, Miranda was told by her law firm partner that she was slacking off at work. They were concerned that she had been late a few times. She said she was committed to her job, it was home that she was failing at.

When Miranda said she was failing at home, I knew exactly what she meant. It was during my brother's illness that I had those feelings of inadequacy about EVERYTHING I was doing. I had a new baby, a full-time job, and a three hour daily commute. I was doing well at absolutely NOTHING.

There was the sense of absolute spiralling out of control when Ric was diagnosed, then spent the next 11 months going from ICU to remission, to death. Time was fleeting during the hours when I worked and my daughter was in daycare, my parents and brother in the hospital, my then-husband unconcerned about changing what we could to make dealing with the family crisis easier. It was awful. I didn't have time for family because I was too busy driving a ridiculous amount of time every day, spending the entire day away from my baby.

I know. It sounded crazy, even while I was living it.

Despite my mom's orders to the contrary, I have guilt related to that time. When I watched that episode, I felt all of it again. What can I do about it now? Nothing. There's no point to feeling guilty, I know, but sometimes I still do feel guilty. And that's the lesson right there. Learn from your mistakes and move on.

When my dad died the year following my brother of the same godawful illness, I was still in the same situation of working, driving, and daycare. But not for long. A month after he died, I moved out and began my new life as a woman who does not want to live far away from family ever again.

Which is probably why my current situation is so questionable.

I'm trying to decide on a college major, but what I really want to do isn't available here. My husband mentions at least once a day how much he wants to have acreage so he can grow things. I am ready to stuff a pillow in his face if he says it one more time. We are here because of HIM. I live where I do not want to live, for him. What does he want from me? I struggle with resentment over living here. There. I've said it. The world may end now.

More messages, it seems, that I do not belong here. I wonder how long this will continue? I wonder how long I will do this to myself?


Deby said...

Having lived the life you described as a single mom for twelve years (never seeing my kid, the commute, the 50+ hour work weeks) and moved out of that fast paced life for a new life up here in Central Oregon - I understand your quandry.

The way I look at it is that my kids are doing better here, I can visit with my teenager instead of having her be a latch key kid and have the time to get into all kinds of trouble, I am able to be with the little ones instead of putting them in daycare (some days daycare looks mighty fabulous though), my stress is reduced, and I don't feel like a hamster on a wheel anymore.

The downside is that I am away from most of my famiy, I miss my friends, I don't have any close friends here yet and I am always working on the house, the business or the yard when I'm not doing kid stuff. And of course, this is the year my mother is diagnosed with breast cancer and I haven't seen her yet. It kills me inside.

Life is a series of balancing acts and changing priorities. It doesn't seem fair that some things you love must be sacrificed for other things you love, but it is life. If I was in S.D. I would be working all the time, commuting all the time, never seeing my kids or my husband and suffering from all kinds of stress related issues again. Maybe you can find another way to balance. Find ways to spend more time with your family each month so you don't feel so disconnected.

My husband says he wants to retire on 160 acres out by Crooked River Ranch. I told him to enjoy himself because I will be in a small condo overlooking the Deschutes. He can visit. :)

Lady M said...

Those are some tough choices. My parents live a few hundred miles away. I wish they were closer, but at least they are within a long day's drive.

About your major - Are your studies for your own intellectual enjoyment or do you need to have a marketable degree? I'm sure you've already thought long and hard about it, but that's definitely something some of my friends have been weighing.