The One That Almost Was Not

You’ve gotten to know me pretty well, right? I’m a fairly OK-ish person; you laugh half-heartedly at my attempts at humor; you may even nod along when I tell you a decent story. I’ve been described as “bubbly” and “fun”. But I can’t be the spunky cheerleader or the little engine that could all the time.

I don’t share Dr. Jekyl side of myself a whole lot; well, I did once and got no comments that post, so I had to conclude that no one wanted to hear that crap, much less put a hand out to steady me. So I thought, Aw hells no, I’m never doing that again.

Then I changed my mind.

I do apologize in advance to my friends and family if reading this post makes you uncomfortable. Believe me, I’m just as embarrassed as you are uncomfortable.

But I have to do this. If I can help just one person, outing myself as a little circus sideshow freak will be worth the embarrassment and not have been in vain.

I’ve decided to close comments on this one, so you don’t feel obligated to leave a pity/sympathy comment, averting an awkward gaze as you gingerly step over me on the way out.

Hey You, the one in the back who thinks that no one could understand…

And You, in the left balcony, who thinks no one wants to understand…

And You, missing the show because you’re locked in the bathroom stall sobbing; who thinks that you’re a helpless victim of an evil captor, yet you have Stockholm Syndrome.

This one’s for You.

If you need someone to talk to, email me at dorydorydoryatyahoodotcom. I’m not ready to cheerlead at the big game yet, but I will sit with you on the bleachers and watch. Even chat if you want. If you need someone to just furrow their brow and nod, I’m stellar in that capacity.

Here goes nothin’. *big inhale*

It’s been a shitty week.

Sunday night I ran out of smokes and forgot to get some, then Monday morning got out the door too late to get some on the way to work.

Monday morning I looked at the calendar and upped my Wellbutrin from 300mg to 450mg in anticipation of PMS week. Monday afternoon I didn’t use my lunch to go get smokes because I didn’t want to lose my primo parking spot. Monday night I didn’t get smokes because hey, I made it 24 hours without a smoke so maybe I’ll experiment with quitting.

First thing Tuesday morning, I start feeling really short of breath, which is like the opposite of what you think is going to happen when you quit smoking. My idiot body has trouble breathing when I quit smoking. This happened to me before, last time I quit, so I decide I’m going to power through it. A couple hours later, driving out of work that night, I find myself in almost full-blown panic attack. Welcome to Crazyville; population, me. I take a lorazepam.

Wednesday morning and afternoon, I was so short of breath that I found myself fighting hyperventilation, doing deep breathing exercises. I take a lorazepam every few hours. Helps a little, but I find myself getting stingy eyeballs at refereeing boys’ fights, poignant blog posts, and baby commercials. I take another chill pill to get to sleep.

Thursday, I’m short of breath, my nose and throat are closing up periodically, and almost every moment is spent concentrating on regulating my breathing and weird stuff happening with my tongue and the back of my throat, because when my throat closes that far, the back of my tongue almost activates my gag reflex. Hand Tremor has joined the party. I take two chill pills. I decide to postpone my lunch until I get hungry. I realize too late that that’s not going to be happening because I’ve skipped hunger pangs and gone straight to shakey. I force myself to take a few bites of my BBQ Chicken Tenderloins and Garlic Mashed Potatoes which is usually one of my faves. Well, you know, in the frozen dinner category, anyway. My last break, I go to the cafe and look out the wall/windows, and note that my interior monologue is eerily quiet. I also realize that the past few days I’ve moved bedtime increasingly earlier and earlier, yet fall asleep later and later.

I hear the train whistle way off in the distance. My heart physically hurts from, what, racing? I guess.

I finish my shift at work. I realize too late that I forgot my USB stick in the computer at work with the post I was going to put up when I got home. I pick up the boys from school and then stop at the grocery store to get food I need to make tacos for supper. On the way back to the car, Rocky points out that I forgot to stop the engine and put the keys in my pocket. The car’s been idling for at least 20 minutes while we were in the store.

In my mind, I curse my brain and hit it with a mallet. Tired of trying to keep my shit together, I stop at the Tobacco Store on the way home and pick up a pack of smokes, hating myself every blessed second. I hear the train again, a little closer.

We get home and I barely get stuff in the door and I head right back out to the garage and smoooooooooooke. Within five minutes, my throat opens a little and then my nose and my breathing slows to almost normal. I realize that’s the first time in about three days I haven’t had to talk myself through breathing. I get back in and start dinner. Later, after dinner, the boys start in. Mom, can i…? Mom, will you…? Mom, look at me…! Mom, he started…! Mom Mom Mom MoMMoMoMoMoM you’re a loser no you are well you’re an idiot nuh uh mom he called me an idiot well he started it and I was just trying to talk to him and then he and I yell STOP! STOP RIGHT THIS SECOND! DO NOT TALK TO EACH OTHER BECAUSE OBVIOUSLY YOU CANNOT HANDLE CONDUCTING A NORMAL CONVERSATION BETWEEN YOURSELVES SO NO TALKING SHUT UP SHUT UP NO TALKING FOR ANY REASON AT ALL!

I turn to walk in the living room, and Dino… talks.


I go in my room and try counting and breathing and give up and cry a little bit and get myself composed and go back out there. I let Dino out of the corner and try to talk to him and end up crying more. I announce it is now time for pajamas and brush your teeth and go upstairs and shut your eyes and go to sleep immediately AND YES I AM WELL AWARE IT IS A HALF HOUR EARLY. Now they’re walking on eggshells and I love you Mom and I’m sorry I made you cry Mom and are you gonna tell Dad, Mom (making mom cry is grounds for dire consequences from Dad) and I shoo them upstairs and grit my teeth and hug them and kiss their annoying little faces and go straight to my room. I get ready for bed, and then try to wind down by reading for a while. I close the book, take off my glasses and set them on top of the book on the headboard.

I snap off the light and stare off into the blackness. As my eyes become adjusted, I stare at my room around me as stuff comes into fuzzy semi-focus. I see clean clothes stacked on my dresser that I haven’t put away into drawers yet, and knickknacks haphazardly here and there.

I listlessly ask myself, why can’t everything be Just So?

When I was growing up on the farm, our house and our barn was always ALWAYS cluttered. Nothing had a place. All Chaos, All the Time. And I felt unsettled and restless and disconcerted most of the time.

When I went to visit Gramma, her house was exactly opposite. A place for everything, and everything in its place. The scotch tape is always in that drawer there, and my books are always in that drawer right there, and my toys are in that box right there. Gramma and I go around every morning and make everyone’s bed. It was Just So. And I felt peaceful and calm.

Why can’t I make my house Just So?

Suddenly I hear the train only 20 feet to my right and its horn is deafening and the ground trembles.

I give way to the stinging eyeballs and let some tears fall like a tragic movie heroine.

If I just worked harder, I could make it Just So.

I go from I Can Handle This to Oops, Too Late like *snaps fingers* that.

Suddenly, the train thunders by me six inches in front of my face; its horn is deafening, and freezing wind and dirt whips me around like a rag doll until I fall ungracefully onto the hard, chilled ground moving underneath me like an earthquake. It thunders and thunders and thunders and I can’t even see the end of it.

Before I know it, I’m crying like the girl who doesn’t get a rose and has to leave the mansion in five minutes, and you last see her in the limousine sobbing uncontrollably and wowzers, it’s just not pretty at all. It’s all snotty and *sharp inhales* Hah!Hah!Hah! *long exhale* Haaaaaaaah. *choke*snort* *sharp inhales* Hah!Hah!Hah! *long exhale* Haaaaaaaah. *choke*snort*

I must not be working hard enough because everything is not Just So.

Hah!Hah!Hah! Haaaaaaaah…
*snort* Hah!Hah!Hah! Haaaaaaaah… *snort*

I’m lazy and everything is not Just So.

Hah!Hah!Hah! Haaaaaaaah… *snort*

If I wasn’t so disorganized and procrastinate-y and scatterbrained and flakey, everything would be Just So.

Hah!Hah!Hah! Haaaaaaaah… *snort*

If I could be good enough to make everything Just So, then everything would be OK.

Hah!Hah!Hah! Haaaaaaaah… *snort*

I can’t make it Just So because I suck at housekeeping, ergo, I suck as a wife.

Hah!Hah!Hah! Haaaaaaaah… *snort*

I should call for help but I can’t because I can’t imagine what it would be like to wait for them to answer and by the time they do I’ll feel like a frickin’ idiot and probably be fine but I’m alone and lonely and alone and lonely. Everyday I resolve to be patient and NOT yell at my sons yet everyday I yell and lose my patience and fail miserably, therefore, I suck as a mom. They must think I don’t love them. They must feel unloved. I make my sons feel unloved and a burden. I’m ruining my sons and their future by making them incredibly screwed up by my failings. My suckiness has oozed all over them like an oil spill and it’s probably too late. I have some cash to pay some bills and I can’t get my catatonic ass up off the couch to go write the checks and stamp the envelopes and it’s just too haaaaard and I am a complete failure in every single aspect of my life.

Hah!Hah!Hah! Haaaaaaaah…

I hate myself. I want to be a better wife/mother/sister/daughter/girlfriend/person but I don’t know how and I’m too broken. I can’t get a good job and I’m going Deaf and I can’t handle my sons and I’m lonely lonely lonely and God it’s so not fair that at this stupid life game excusing yourself from the game disqualifies you for the party afterwards so that’s so so so not fair because I. can’t. do. this.

Hah!Hah!Hah! Haaaaaaaah…
Hah. Hah. Hah. Haaaaaaaah… *snort* Haaaaaaaah… Hah. Haaaaaaaah… *snort*

The entire right side of my sinus cavity has hardening cement within. I try to blow my nose – nothing. I flop down on the bed on my right side so the open side of my face can breathe freely.

Hah. Haaaaaaaah…

I’m vaguely aware of falling into what I think is sleep and I’m hanging on to a rope. My hands slip on the rope, but I hold it for all I’m worth (which at this point is really not that much) What I don’t know is that the rope has razors embedded within. They pop out, and my hands jump away from the pain and gravity prevails and I free fall into a sludge-y, churning, bubbling, steaming vat of SUCK.

Tom comes home a few hours later and gives me our sign which roughly translates Wanna? Reckon? and I say NO and flop onto my other side violently and shut my eyes and try to return to sleep but I’m quietly crying again.

4:30am – the alarm pierces my consciousness and I open my eyes and just as quickly shut them against the pain of the crying hangover. Holy vice-like grip, Batman. Have Mercy.

Somehow I manage to shower and get out the door to work.

I sit down at my desk and start writing this post. I work a bunch then write a little then work a bunch then write a little all day long. My nose has been running constantly as my sinuses disimpact from last evening’s festivities.

I get home and immediately start writing again. Which brings us to now.

Some girls indulge in a little retail therapy to heal their wounded psyche; you know, buy yourself a little something pretty. I am wont to do likewise, but with a twist. I buy a little something electronic. Tomorrow sounds good for that. I think I’ll also pick up a halfway decent bottle of Merlot. We haven’t had any in the house for months. It’s payday. I think I can splurge and spend $15 on wine. For now, I’m gonna go to a hockey game that I bought a ticket for last week before all the Broo Haa Haa and I’m going to try to have some fun. I may scream YOU BEDWETTER! at the other team’s goalie. They love that.

Offer still stands… You need to talk, you let me know. I feel ya.