When it rains, it pours
Last Wednesday evening I sat and wondered how life would be if I had a normal boring life. One where I didn’t have to rush anywhere or juggle appointments. That of my kids or my own. I wondered what life would be like if I wasn’t forced to leave friendships on the backburner while I try to hold it together. If I didn’t have to be strong all the time.
As pleasing as the thought was, life obviously doesn’t have that course of action in mind for me. Clearly demonstrated on Thursday morning when my kids returned home after less than half an hour of leaving home for school. Comforting a hysterical #MiddleK while trying to make sense of the blank look on #1stK’s face and absorbing the shock of hearing the husband shout obscenities. All this before 6AM! I cannot begin to explain the strange sense of calm that enveloped me just then. My autopilot was on someone-has-to-keep-it-together mode. Even after hearing the cause I still held on to my composure. Not my own violation. It just happened.
My daughter had fallen under a moving bus and narrowly escaped death. Both my son and husband bearing witness to it. As the wheel of the bus rode over her school bag and both her water bottle and cooldrink burst. Both my guys thought it was her head. But God said NO. It was not the day she would meet our maker. All I remember saying was “Thank you Lord” over and over again.
The following day #1stK had his hurdles race final and this time he competed for a spot on the Western Province team. He came second in his heat and when the results came in he was second overall. But this was not to be either. The race officials had made a mistake with one of his teammates time and the results had to be revised. Which it was, the same evening but still not resolved. He was told he’d get a call the following day and he is still waiting. Last we heard from his teammate on Saturday was that he had been bumped from 2nd place to 4th. Now, I don’t know athletics all that well, but I do know that it doesn’t take rocket science to figure out that someone had muddled up the times causing me to question the integrity somewhat. A major disappointment to add to trauma.
All this after celebrating my dad’s 60th birthday the week before and #LittleK’s birthday in the same week. I guess I should also tell you that my sister is leaving for Beijing in just a few hours. Tomorrow morning actually but what’s a few hours compared to twenty four freaking months. That’s how long she’ll be away. So last week we make plans for her farewell party not knowing I’d have two PTS patients by the time. Not to mention the husband but he’s playing it cool. That I’d be torn between attending the party, staying home with them and marching to the track to find out what the heck is happening. By now I’m questioning the integrity of the athletics meet as a whole. How many kids had to face disappointments because of “mistakes”? And this is not even about just my son anymore.
Feeling like a downright louse, my sister wins. Twenty four freaking months. My lifeline is going and who is going to converse in movie/series scenes and lines? Who is going to giggle with me with or without a few sips of sparkling wine or Brut or whatever you call it? Let’s just call it champagne. For the poor, if you want to get technical. Who is going to just know without me having to explain a situation to her. Except for her website. That took some doing. My kids look downright miserable and I feel it too. But I have the suspicion that I am making them slightly more miserable with my looks, constant “Are you ok”, the talks and the dozens of hugs. I can’t help myself though. This is all new to me and how the hell do I deal with it? No amount of stitches, broken bones and operations (when they were younger) prepared me for this.
Eats don’t work. Clearly not emotional eaters. They take after both parents, sleeping is more our thing. So the kids sleep and sleep some more. Crying happens from time to time and I try to give them space too. I am way out of my depth in this mothering business. The thought of what Google might produce is a huge turn off right about now. The last thing I want to know is contradictory information that might have me seeing signs of suicidal thoughts that isn’t there. Again. My sister’s farewell wins. My kidneys don’t, because I indulge in wine. I drown the voice reminding me of the pain I’ll be in for the next few days. The pain doesn’t come though. Life is about to get real tough on me. No time to dwell on little things like pain right now.
My dad has been taken up in hospital. Although I’m not quite sure what’s wrong yet but we do know it started with a tummy bug. No, Google. No! My dad has to be ok. You hear me? Don’t be telling me about Listeriosis and stuff. We don’t buy Enterprise products. We compromise. I cannot deal with anymore emotional upheaval right now. But still, I smile…
I smile with the drunk parent who acts all kinds of fool when visiting their child’s school. Getting all bad and boujee in my face. With the moms with bad attitudes who give their kids the right to be complete a-holes. I smile with the kid who desperately longs for love and kindness. Who yearns for a scrap of attention. A smile costs more than my entire outfit and yet nothing at all. I even managed a smile for the child who vomited on my foot at school the other day. I wanted nothing more than to run the other way and scream. Run out the door and stick my foot in the dirty canal that runs alongside the school. But I sucked it up and helped the sick child before seeing to my foot. That’s what moms do, isn’t it?
I offer words of comfort to a man whom I’ve never met before for the passing of his beloved wife. Even though I have no idea what he may be going through I feel for him. Just thinking about losing the husband makes me want to lose my mind. I would be lost without him. Nope, I don’t want to think about it.
While I’m sharing confidences, should I tell you about my budget? Of how happy I am that Pronutro was on special last month and how happy I am that I bought a lot of boxes. Or how happy I am that my grocery savings box is now my emergency stash. Maybe you should know how I regret buying an extra pair of shoes and splurging on books that I’ll have no time to read for probably the next two months. How unexpectedly having to buy my daughter new everything for school because her bag and stationery was demolished. And my son’s athletic achievements are costing me a pretty penny because I have to buy new gear almost every week.
Life is a downright mess right now. It doesn’t mean that my spirits are low and I can’t deal. Actually I can’t, but I totally can. Strength I had now idea I possessed is carrying me through and I am OK. My husband and kids are OK. I can only pray that my dad will be OK too.
So yeah, I guess when it rains it pours. But… there’s always a silver lining.
I celebrate the small victories while it prepares me for battles I may just have to face in life.
One day after #MiddleK’s accident, the bus services company contacted us and said the bus driver had given his side of the story and he claimed responsibility. They also sent us a claim form. Having my daughter alive and physically unharmed was more than I could ask for. I never expected to have anything come of the accident. I don’t even know what to claim for. How does it even work?
My son made the WP team. Not much excitement here though. Did he make it because of his athletic ability? He ran a good race and he deserves a spot on the team. We film all his races and have his time recorded. It’s our proof. Knowing I had to make enquiries and geared up to fight doesn’t sit well. The fight wasn’t even to secure him a spot on the team. The integrity is still in question. A question that shouldn’t have to be asked. I think of other kids and their parents who don’t make a fuss… I stand for fairness and equality.
The only real question I have right now is, do I really have to get rid of all viennas and polony I bought? I don’t even have the till slips to prove where I bought it.
So, how is life treating you?