I think I’ve begun to unravel. Like at my seams.
The pressure is really starting to get to me. It seems like the last 9 months of working like crazy finally caught up to me this week.
Really, it seemed like it hit me Tuesday, when I literally ran from one spot to the next. I felt like a ball of stress all day.
This feeling carried over to even my low pressure Wednesday, as the day flew by and I did not get anything done.
Yesterday I thought I had hit my pinnacle of stress as it was another day of rushing and feeling stressed. No stress does not really explain how I’ve been feeling. What’s beyond stress? Insanity? Perhaps. All I know is I felt tense and on-edge all day. But, I went to bed early, thinking a long night’s sleep would make me feel much better.
Wrong. I rolled out of bed thinking about how much I had to do today!
There are several reasons for this sudden onslaught of stress:
1. I have a tremendous amount of work to get done this weekend, and I’m completely unorganized at the moment, which makes everything worse. Since the community college ended today and all that’s left is finals, I have to grade everything that’s been piling up to get back to the students. I also have a lot of essays, midterms, revised essays, and little assignments to get back to my students at the university. The problem is, I don’t even really know how much work I have in front of me. Some things are graded, but most isn’t. I’ve been so busy the past two weeks, that I’ve just been throwing things in piles. Look at my dining room table and all the chaos:
And my office, my desk, and my car all look the same. It frustrates me to no end that tomorrow I’m going to have to spend 2 hours just organizing before I can even delve into the grading.
2. My students have been so needy lately. They are also full of complaints. I constantly hear: “God…this class is taking up all of my time. It’s only a G.E.!” I am SO OVER THIS! There is not too much work; they just have spring fever and don’t want to do the work. And all I can think to say is: “Wait until you’re in the real world, and you only get 2 weeks off a year, you whiny little shit!” Then on top of that, they are bombarding me with constant questions, which I never mind answering, but what they really want is for me to do the work for them. So frustrating.
3. Last night a friend–thankfully–text messaged me to ask if I was applying for financial aid at Maddie’s school. Of course I am, but I had completely forgotten that today was the last day. And since I haven’t been eligible the past 2 years because I had to file my taxes “married but filing separately,” I was really looking forward to this year so I could apply and maybe get some financial help. But, of course, in the midst of all the last few weeks chaos, I had forgotten. And since Maddie goes to private school and tuition is $4600/year, I had to get on it. Which meant two things:
a. I had to rush around today acquiring the forms, finding my tax info, making copies, and heading over to the post office so it could be post marked by today. Considering I teach almost all day and only have an hour break from 2-3, this was extremely stressful.
b. The actual paperwork almost sent me over the edge! There’s this part that asks my marital status. Well, if I say I’m divorced then I have to fill out all this custody information, child support information, etc. BUT the thing is, yes, I am divorced, but none of that applies to Maddie. Yes, I share custody with Luke (me: 85%; him:15% for now) and yes I get child support for Luke. BUT I have full legal and physical custody of Maddie (her father’s only allowed to see her with court ordered supervised visits, which he has only done ONCE in 5.5 years) and I have never received a cent from him in child support. So do you see the dilemma? The paperwork assumes that both my kids come from the same dad, and they don’t and the situations are totally different. But there was no place to explain this! So, fuck it, I thought, and just lied and said I’ve never been married and receive no child support (which I don’t feel badly about since this is financial aid for MADDIE not Luke). But then, my taxes show that I receive child support, which will probably throw a kink in the whole system, but then again, maybe I’ll just be able to explain all of this to an actual PERSON (and then hope that he/she doesn’t judge me).
4. Luke has been super needy and clingy lately and has been waking up a lot during the night as well. I’m exhausted and not sleeping well because of this. Enough said.
5. Finally, last night I was feeling so weird and frustrated that I actually wrote a status update on facebook (which I rarely do). I said: “[my name] needs a drink, maybe a good book, perhaps an early bed time? I’m not sure what I need, but this has been a LONG day, and something is in order.” And my funny uncle replied, “Dude. You need a dude.”
And last night, I thought, he’s right. I haven’t had a man in my life in almost 3 years. And while 99.9% of the time I’m fine, there are times–like this week when I’m totally overwhelmed–that I realize how much I NEED a man. And I find myself looking, no longing, at complete male strangers, thinking: “would you come home with me? do some chores? fix some things? love me? hold me? comfort me?” I never say that out loud, but sometimes I stare too long at a man and then get a weird look, which then makes me feel totally humiliated.
But last night, in bed with Luke next to me, I thought of how nice it would feel to have a man just hold me (believe me, my imagination wasn’t going any further), and then I realized if that actually happened, I think I would have this visceral response that I couldn’t control–letting go off all the shit accumulated over the past three year– and I would probably lose it–like just start crying uncontrollably–because it would just be, well, I don’t know…so nice. And the thing is I never cry (unless when watching a good, sappy movie–then I’m all tears); I am very practical and rational person. Even when I’m feeling totally overwhelmed, I don’t cry. What’s the point, I think. It’s not going to change my situation and the last thing my kids need to see is me lose it.
But I just know, the next man to hold me is going to have a sobbing woman on his hands.
And this thought–a five minute thought right before I feel asleep–mortified me for two reasons:
1. Have I become that weak?
2. What would this man–you know, the imaginary one I just created in this scenario–think of some woman crying uncontrollably in his arms. He’d think I was crazy, and he’d have every reason to think this.
Then I had an even more horrifying thought: Am I crazy?
No, definitely not. I’m just overwhelmed and over-stressed and overly frustrated.
The good news is this will pass. It always does. I only have 2 finals to give at the community college, and only 4 weeks left at the university, and then–SUMMER! 2 1/2 months off.
So, I guess, tonight, I’m thankful summer is coming. Kinda weak, I know. But to be honest, I’m amazed I even came up with that.
Oh, and one more thing–Maddie has been an angel all week. Now there’s something to be really thankful for!