Friday, February 03, 2012

Hard Times Come Again No More

I recognize this is a highly histrionic title. I'm taking things pretty histrionically lately.

The mud! The mud Cleo tracked in, how can I go on?

The computer, the computer. My Dell laptop, my truest typer since 2008 is dying. It's working right now but the monitor flickers and then goes out and then the harddrive spins and spins.

The sickness. The sickness. Max was sick with two different diseases two weeks in a row. I kept waiting for Zoe to get the second one as she coughed through the first. I teased her one night, Zoe, if you have to throw up, get out of bed, throw up in the toilet and then go back to bed. She said, why do you get all the sleep Mama? If she only knew. I haven't slept in two weeks. And, in the histrionic mood I'm in, I say I haven't slept in two years. I'm in one of those places where everything seems dark. The babysitter: what does she do to Max make him so grumpy.  Why doesn't Max sleep? He shouts out, Ow! and Mama! and blankie! every ten minutes all night long. We sleep next to his crib in a bed because our only choice is to sleep upstairs far away.

This house. This house! Why is the master bedroom so far away from the kids? I could try to sleep upstairs but last time I did that, Max screamed loud enough to wake the neighbors. Even if he were to wake up normally and ask for his blankie, I imagine falling down the stairs to get him his blankie, or Zoe falling down them as she comes up to tell us Max is awake.

My job: how will I stop the accumulation? The rejections, the essays to grade, the essays to edit, the essays and poems to write and send out. It all seems so dumb. And dark. I'm reading Eugenides' "The Marriage Plot." It makes me wonder if I'm bipolar. I presume it makes everyone wonder if they're bipolar. But that's  the dark, depressive view.

But maybe things are turning around. It snowed. Maybe we won't all die of thirst. Margot and my book "Bending Genre: Essay in Creative Nonfiction" got picked up by Continuum Press. I finally got that internal Faculty Grant. Three microessays got accepted today. My friends' baby's oxygen levels were almost 100% yesterday--She is turning around. My old agent sent me a publishing idea. Maybe Max will sleep in the night. Maybe Zoe won't throw up. Maybe, this weekend, instead of cleaning the house and handing out tissues and washing sheets, we'll go snowshoeing. Maybe what seemed like the punishment of living will abate and seem like just another January and February will turn this year around. Maybe tomorrow I will write the blog post I wanted to write that is light and happy and full of good food ideas. I will. Write it and it will be true. Maybe I'll write two posts in one day just to prove it's true.


radagast said...

Love this post. Not the misery of it, of course, but the grittiness, the heartfeltness, the mud. January and February are absolutely the dark mud tracked across the carpet of the year. I guess I recognize the dark, depressive view. . . . I'll look forward to the next post, laptop permitting, which I'm confident will also be true, whether light or dark. For your sake, I'm hoping light.

Ali said...

Congrats on the book! Yay to you and M!