The truth is, I’m feeling a little bitter at the moment. Now, I tend to avoid saying things like that because I don’t need any helpful comments or sympathy or judgment. And I could shape this into a life lesson and wrap it up with a cheerful bow, but I don’t want to. I just want to express the way things feel at this moment, even if it’s not pretty.
Perhaps I’m not actually bitter. Maybe it’s exhaustion.
Actually, here is what it is. I am a passenger in a car and I want to be the driver. I don’t want to go where this car is taking me.
Here’s what I want to do:
I want to spend days alone.
I want to plant a garden.
I want to sleep in.
I want to see three movies in one day.
I want to read a whole novel in one sitting.
I want to watch the sun set.
I want to take a walk.
I want people to stop talking to me and asking me things and calling, “MOM?”
Basically, I want to be selfish. I want to put myself first. I want to do what I want to do and I don’t want to have to stop to make dinner and cook food that I would never choose for myself.
But I’m just along for the ride. I work, I take care of kids, I tend to my kitchen, I wash laundry, I shuttle kids to their activities. And there’s never time left over for me. It’s like I handed over my driver’s license all those years ago and now I’m just riding along, locked into the backseat. This ride has no brakes.
Now, of course, there is time for me. Rarely but sometimes. And I feel guilty when those times arrive and I have to carefully arrange that time so everyone else is taken care of . . . and I answer my phone while I’m away because everyone needs to know exactly what time I’ll be back and am I bringing dinner? Or what will I cook when I get home?
I’d like to time travel twenty years into the future when I have the luxury of a quiet week and leisure time and less of this scurry and hurry life because I know when the silence comes I will get all nostalgic and wish for just One More Day of all of this.
But right now I’d like to take my car keys and drive up the coast but instead I will sleep for six hours, take my daughter to school, start working, wash my son’s lacrosse uniform for Picture Day, pick up my son from school, have a meeting with my daughter’s teacher, remember that I forgot to plan dinner, debate going to the gym with my boys, drive son to music practice, take a nap and work again until midnight.
And here’s the thing. I am essentially an introvert who is never alone. I’m a creative soul who has no creative outlet. And every time this one plant in the back yard starts to create a bud, a snail gnaws it off and that, my friends, really irritates me.