I toyed around with a bunch of titles for this post:
"Go Sell Crazy Somewhere Else, This Mom Is All Stocked Up" (but that was stolen from a movie.)
"Pardon Me While I Revel In Self Pity"
"When The Third Threshold of Hell Comes Knocking"
Or maybe just simply this:
"I Live With My Mother-in- Law"
Let's set the stage...
I am starting to panic about Christmas.
The family get together with my husbands family is looming. I hate these. Every year I screw them up. The thing is I am not a gifter.
In addition to that I am always broke, or have been for the last few years, and so I never CAN buy stuff. So I just sit there and feel like a cheap idiot while everybody passes around gifts. I should know the drill by now but still- I never figure out anything clever or cute and creative.
Instead I usually cry and suppress anger towards my husband which sometimes boils over into fights about his mother. I know. Don't I sound fun in real life?!
But this year I am not screwing up the hubby's family Christmas bash! Oh No! Not me! I am trying to prepare early.
Have I ever mentioned that the hardest thing for me about being a housewife is that I have to ask my husband for money? This is really difficult. I might as well just urinate on my pride. What is left of it that is.
That is the background for my bad mood today.
I sleep in this morning. My son was late to school. This sucks especially because I had to talk to his principle a few weeks ago about him being late.
I am that irresponsible mom. People actually call me, "That woman with all the kids who parks her Suburban wherever she likes."
Yeah, that's me. I have been known to sneak into teacher parking. Anyway.... He is late for school. In addition to the fact that my four year olds favorite game is called, "pack everything up in my room, take to the living room and unpack," I also forgot to get a baby sitter for my three little girls. I was supposed to help with knitting class at my son's school.
What the heck? I can take them. My children are beacons of discipline and grace. Plus they are always quiet. People wonder if they are mute, ya know?
This was a really dumb idea of course, but I go through with it. I really hate when I am trying to help but instead I am just a distraction with all my screaming kids. That is pretty much how it played out.
Upon leaving I decide that the best thing to do now would be to go to Walmart. (If you are reading this and you know me in real life, now you have proof enough to have me committed to a mental institution whenever you would like. WHO does that?)
As you know, Walmart has special music that tells your children subliminally to "Scream so your parents will buy you something plastic or made of corn syrup to shut you up."
The highlight of the trip was either when I:
A) Called my husband and cried or
B) A total stranger instructed my screeching two year old to "Stop being a naughty girl and be nice for your mom!" I didn't know if I should be grateful or offended. I just kept walking.
Finally I get home. There is mail! Mail is fun, right?
Upon picking up the mail I discover that despite the fact that I moved out of the great state of Texas three years ago they have not forgotten me. No, I have over $200 in fees for driving on toll roads. WHAT THE HECK!? I inform my sympathetic husband. They were HIS charges after all. HE was the one commuting. He shrugs.
"What are they gonna do? Arrest me?"I reply:
"No honey. MY NAME is on the invoice, the car was registered in my name. NOT yours! They will arrest ME!"(Did I say honey? I was thinking of another expletive to call him by but I was told by a professional that name calling was actually not productive. FINE HONEY!)
My husband may want me in jail. Can I blame him after they way I have been acting today? I began the morning by getting angry at a pack rat four year old.
I attempt to call the Texas transit people to sort things out. Of course the automated number is one of those that is voice activated. This was definitely invented by somebody who had no children and who lived in a soundproof room. Seriously one of the dumbest inventions of all time. It is in my top three.
Trying to get through the menu is endless because the baby keeps screaming. After hearing the directions no less than four times in Spanish (did the babies screams sound like she was requesting Spanish? I guess so.)
They finally just patch me over to a real person. I inform her of the situation. I didn't know it was a toll road, we moved three years ago, we don't even have that car, I swear there were NO signs, etc.
She is not sympathetic. I get transferred to a supervisor when she realizes I am not getting it. Let's just say that my tears of sorrow were not enough to soften his heart either. I was feeling pretty bad about my life at this point.
I actually blew my nose into a pair of children's striped panties right about then. Don't worry. They were clean. I couldn't find a tissue.
Blah blah blah, lots of grumping and complaining about everything. My husband starts force feeding me B Vitamins after I try to take it out on him. But we made it through dinner. My hubby, whom I am ignoring by now, suggests that we go visit a sick friend for family night.
He mentions that it might help "put things in perspective" as he gives me a holier than thou glance. But when we arrive at our friend's house with dinner we find that he is gone. As it turns out, he is in the hospital, so we visit him there.
He was happy to see us. He is sick. He may never get better. It certainly doesn't look good.
And so even though I spent the day hoping that nobody would call me out on my selfish pity party, it turns out that I did need some perspective. I often do.
I am grateful for my family. Especially grateful as I see a sick friend who never married or had children and might not have that opportunity in this life.
Yes, I wish Christmas was more about Christ and less about gifts. Yes, I will forever hate voice activated automated phone directories, and yes, my husband can be irritating when I am in a bad mood. Still, I have a good life. Even if people have to discipline my kids in Walmart. And hey- the underware I blew my nose on WAS clean! It doesn't get much better than that.
I hope you ladies have a wonderful holiday season and handle it with more grace and dignity that I will.