Do you ever get the feeling that every single thing in your life is just wrong and that you need something to change? Something needs to just break or explode or fail miserably so that you can release all that pent up frustration you’ve been carrying around because it isn’t working?
That’s sort of how I’ve felt the last few weeks.
Don’t get me wrong -I have about a million and one things to be grateful for this year. 2013 has been amazing, and every now and then I just stop and marvel at the things that have gone right for me. Looking back even as recently (ahem) as my last post, I realize that I’ve overcome several of the biggest obstacles of my life in the last four months. As soon as I completed those long-term goals, however, I found myself face to face with a whole new set of challenges.
One of those challenges is my decision to start graduate school as soon as I could. I had no idea I’d be getting a job I loved and struggling to manage my family’s finances amidst no small amount of budgeting turmoil. Despite my ongoing concerns about money -I still feel like a million dollars compared to where we were a few years ago. But between working a nearly full week and trying to be here for my children who are both at tender ages that require a lot more of my attention than they’re getting -how am I supposed to do the readings and write the lengthy assignments for graduate level courses?
Frankly, I think I’m in over my head. It’s not because the work is too hard -I’d be thriving in graduate school if that was all I had to do, or if I was working as a grad assistant WHILE attending classes. Being Superwoman is not the exciting relief I thought it would be when I was slaving for that Bachelor’s degree. I come home from work enthused about spending time with the kids, they wear me out until bedtime and then I’m supposed to dive into 50 pages of dry rhetorical criticism? Or should I just completely ignore them when they come home from school hungry and ornery, until they go to bed and I’m alone with my guilt? Funny how uncomfortable that green grass is to walk on when you get over the proverbial fence.
So now I’m torn -Spring Break is coming, and I think it’ll be just the relief I need to see me through the rest of the semester… but I’m really struggling to justify staying in school in my current situation. We need money now, not in a few years when I’ve got a Master’s Degree and potentially menopause -ugh, did I really just think/write that?
These were just the kind of problems I had daydreams about before, and now I’m truly worried that all this focus on moving forward has resulted in a very turbulent Kindergarten experience for my 5 year old. He was home with me for most of his young life, and only really spent a semester or two in campus child care before moving on to “big kids” school. He’s having behavior problems and bathroom problems and still draws Mike and I with big frowns in his stick figure families. Am I reading too much into that?
My oldest (10) is very smart and sensitive, but I worry that the distance between us will become a problem if I’m so frazzled I can’t occasionally give him the kisses he tries so hard to dodge and make sure he knows that I’m here to listen to his rants and fantasies and crazy ideas about learning to program (he told me today he wants to learn Python. I’m seriously fighting the pride back down). He needs me to be invested in him, and I feel like I’m failing at that. I got the big thing I wanted in December -the piece of paper has arrived. Maybe it’s time I put everybody else’s needs up a little higher on my list of priorities. Then again, it’s not like I’ve ever forgotten that I was a mom and a wife and a housekeeper and a DJ as well as a student.
Something’s gotta give. We’ll see how I feel after a week off, I guess.