Sunday, March 10, 2013

The One at the Low End of the Totem Pole.

A little disclaimer before I start writing this post:  I know I’ve got it good.

I’m in a loving marriage, I’ve got a great kid, I’m healthy, and though I could use more money (who couldn’t?) we’re okay financially. I know these things, and I try to be continually conscious of and grateful for them.

But then there are days like today.

Days when my house is in desperate need of cleaning, yet I rationalize putting it off for one more day; where the minutia of the daily grind becomes physically painful; when my husband’s jokes are really insults masked in jest; when I spend all my energy keeping my patience with my daughter as she yells at me from her room, incensed because I committed some heinous act against her like insisted she go to bed on time.

On days like today I sit here and think, “This is my life?”

This is my life.

And I keep it together until the house is quiet, and everyone else is asleep except for me. Then I expose my dirty little secret… I break out my imagination. I allow myself to imagine what it would be like to kiss my husband in the morning, drop my daughter off at school and drive until I ended up somewhere new, in another version of my own life.

A life where I’ve had the courage and persistence to accomplish dreams that were seeded long before I could’ve imagined how raw adulthood can be; a life where I’m a tougher version of myself instead of the real me – inconsistent and idle.

I swing like a pendulum – one minute feeling resolute that I deserve a life that’s more than just one laundry basket after the next, then swinging furiously to guilty depths for feeling unappreciative and unsatisfied with how good I actually have it.

Too often I refuse to swing at all, paralyzed by laziness and fear.

I swing between two different characters from Sex and the City (all my references seem to come back to Sex and the City):  I wish I were more like Samantha – brash and entirely sure of herself, unwilling to put anything above her own instinct and survival, but in reality I’m much more like Charlotte – borderline na├»ve and fragile, yet unwilling to let go of her idealism even though it’s been proven false time and time again.

This is my life.

It’s complicated.