Wednesday, February 15, 2006

I've Been Trapped Under a Large Heavy Object For the Last Five Days.

Just kidding. I've just been busier than usual.

Doing what, you say? Well...

Friday was Mr. P's birthday. He got Star Wars Battlefront, and for being four years old, he's really pretty good at it.

Earlier in the day, R (who had taken off of work that day) and the boys and I went to a Goodwill store near the outskirts of Nowhere. And it was there that I suffered a Full-On Panic Attack. I debated whether or not to even write about this, because it challenges my Descriptive Abilities, but I'll try to paint a picture of the scene.

Goodwill stores are usually pretty interesting People Watching, but this one was a stone's throw from Torronado Estates, if ya know what I'm sayin. So the People Watching was Particularly Prime. T-Dog had been whinier than usual that morning. He was tired, I was tired, and things just started off bad. He didn't want to sit in the cart, but I insisted. And he resisted.


Quiet! I hissed at him.


Oh my God, SHUT UP.

This went on. And on. I don't know what kept me from strangling him.

I should clarify here - I always feel like my parenting skills are open to critique by strangers. Always. I know it's not really happening, but I feel like I can feel people staring at me and wondering why the hell I can't control my kid. I feel like every other parent in the world got a Training Manual before they left the hospital and for some reason, I didn't get one. I feel like this ALL the time.

As a Stay-Home Mom, Parenting is my Job. I feel like I suck at it, I don't get paid, and I never get a vacation day or a sick day and I can never ever quit. And all of these swirling thoughts converged into a cold sweaty panic that literally felt like (and here I'm struggling for words) the air around me instantly became heavy, like I could physically feel it weighing down on me. I had to get out of the building or the ceiling was going to crash in.

At this point in the story, my memory of the ordeal gets a little foggy. Apparently, I walked over to where R and Pie were and whispered, "We have to get out... we have to get out..." over and over. I don't remember consciously choosing to say it, it was like the words were just squeezing past my teeth and through my lips and I couldn't stop them.

Bear in mind that T-Dogger was still screaming his face off.

R, God bless him, immediately took Ry's hand and we all very calmly made it out to the Parking Lot where I broke down and sobbed uncontrollably . Randy asked me what was wrong, and I said I didn't know. I really didn't know. I cried the whole way home. That was Friday afternoon. Then I sucked it up, put my Game Face on, baked a cake for Pie's Birthday and we had a little family par-tay.

Saturdays are always hard because R works all day. When R got home, Ry and I went to a birthday party for a little girl in his class. I got lost on the way and called R, not scared or panicked, but just pissed at myself. Eventually we got there and it was a really cute party. There were other parents there, and as I alluded, I never feel comfortable around other parents. But this evening actually went well. Although I did let it slip that Nat attended R's and my wedding. Not sure how that went over with the other parents, but I don't really care if people know that about us. Screw 'em if they have an effin opinion about it.

Then Sunday was Ry's birthday party. A little on the disorganized tip, but we got the important stuff like Lunch, Cake and Presents right. A good time was had by all. He got a bunch of Star Wars stuff and was elated.

Meanwhile, I've been taking Ambien for about a week and I'm afraid I'm dependent on it. I can't sleep without it. I've tried. It isn't pretty. But then I thought about it. Of course I can't sleep without it. That's why I started taking it. Duh.

So I called my Parents after the Party to let them know how it went, and in the conversation I mentioned my Panic Attack. To my Mom's credit, she at least understands that I really can't just wake up in the morning and "decide to be happy". She suggested that I check the Side Effects of Ambien. And today I did. The woman knows her shit but sometimes I hate it when she's right. Here's an exerpt from the Side Effects section of the website:

Changes in behavior and thinking: Some people using sleep medicines have experienced unusual changes in their thinking and/or behavior. These effects are not common. However, they have included:
• more outgoing or aggressive behavior than normal
• loss of personal identity
• confusion
• strange behavior
• agitation
• hallucinations
• worsening of depression
• suicidal thoughts


So basically, I get to decide whether I want to try to get by on 4 hours of sleep a night, or get a decent amount of sleep and pray I don't lose my personal identity, freak out over some random thing and drive off a cliff with the kids in the car.


Then on Monday, Nat found out that her Science Fair Project got a 2nd Place Ribbon! Not bad! And that evening, Yetunde and I went to see Brokeback Mountain. I haven't been able to stop thinking about it since. What a well-told story! I enjoyed it a lot more than I expected to. A worthy Oscar Contender. And Heath Ledger. Yum. I'd probably still want to kiss him even if I was a guy.

Yesterday was Valentine's Day, and we went Low-Budget. We got a Tito Puente CD, R made a really great dinner and let me rest while he did lots of little clean-up projects throughout the house. It was exactly what I needed. I told him how much I love him and how wonderful it is that, despite my many imperfections, I never, ever doubt his love for me. I don't know what I would do without him, I honestly don't. I poured out my heart, tears and all, and it was extremely liberating and beautiful. Money can't buy that. And it's a good thing too, cuz we gots no money.

Yeah, good thing we went Low-Budget, as we discovered today that we were, once again, Significantly Overdrawn. Dammit. I looked at our statement online, and I about threw up. It seems what happened was that the Gas Bill posted via on the 10th instead of the 17th, on what would have been PayDay. My fault entirely, I should have changed the Payment Date. So EVERYTHING bounced. And I really don't understand Insufficient Funds Fees - if I didn't have the money the first time, why would they think I'd get that money PLUS the stupid fees? So I called the bank and got them to refund me $100 in Overdraft Charges, which was nice. Then we got hooked up with Overdraft Protection. We'll see how that goes.

Then we looked at our other bank account to see if we could move any money over, and Lo and Behold, our State Tax Refund had been Direct Deposited. God Bless the State of Missouri.

Oh, and today we had Oriental Spice tea in my Magnificent New Teapot! It's the coolest thing. I'll understand if you're jealous. My life is pretty sweet.

And lastly, another Ryanism.

Today I was just overwhelmed by what a cool kid he is, so I gave him a big bear hug and said "Ry, how did you get so cute?" And he said,

"Because of poop."

I had to say something Parental-Sounding before I started giggling, so I said "You know, Ry, when you say words like Poop, I wonder if you maybe just don't know any nice words to use instead." His reply -

"I know some nice words, I just can't think of any right now."

Poop Poop Poop.
It really is kinda funny to say.
Poopity Poop Poop.


Jennifer said...

Oh sweetie, I can relate with the SAHM parenting stuff. I hear you and can tell you that you're not alone in your feelings of being trapped and panicked sometimes. I wish I could get through a day without wanting to hide under a rock.

Glad your Valentine's was a sweet one.

your SP said...

Poop is fun to say!

I can't relate to the SAHM (not having any chilluns and all) but I can most certainly relate to panic attacks/depression/insert favorite mental illness here. ((hug))

Sleeping issues - my husband (and sometimes me) suffers from this all the time. Here are some things he's used that've worked to varying degrees - melatonin (I tried this and it made me suicidal, but he loves it, so uh, yeah.), valerian root (the package says 2, I take 6 and in 20 minutes if I'm not nodding off I at least don't give a shit, it's where Valium comes from!) and Percogesic. It's an OTC pain reliever Vicks makes. The label says nothing about drowsiness being a side effect, but they knock me right out and I get the most solid sleep of my life. Plus they get rid of migraines!

Hang in there you lovely, funny, wonderful woman, you! Life sometimes sucks, but it always gets better and without the contrast of 'suck' life would be pretty damned boring.

Bezzie said...

We all worry about being the craptacular mother. I'm not a SAHM, but I also feel like my parenting style is on trial when a teacher at daycare tells me my son was "all over the place today" meaning one minute he's passing out hugs and the next he's beating the snot out of his best buddy. Can I help it if I let him stay up an extra hour and he gets manic when he's tired??
So my rule is if you can say Poop at the end of the day and still laugh about it, you're doing ok.

Jerry & Maxy said...

Oh, Penny. Your SP has some great suggestions for your sleeplessness...I'll go with the ever-familiar talk to your doctor one, cause the sleeplessness could be coming from some place else.

Rock on that you got that poopy sense of humor going for you!