absolutely, devastatingly sure i cannot do this

I’m sitting at the kitchen table and I’m crying again. I think I have dried snot on my jeans from crying earlier today. My shirt is dusted with flour from helping Ralph cook dinner, my children are in the bath, my life is “perfect”, and I’m so worn out because somehow life is also so very, very hard for me lately.

I did OK for part of the evening but actually, at about 3 PM part of me thought about drinking all my heavy-duty cough syrup (still got that cough – yay!) and slipping into a coma. Life was just too much suck, and the thing is, it was all my own fault. Let’s be clear, the cough syrup fantasy was definitely coming from the not-really-going-to-do-it place (after all, I do need smaller doses of it on a nightly basis), but it was also a pretty deep, stagnant mire of suffering and despair. A few years ago I had a friend relate a similar episode in her life after watching the film Love Actually (P.S., blarf!), so I know if she’s reading this she relates.

Instead of drinking cough syrup, I did another first. Depression eating. No, really, first time. I mean I’ve mis-eaten out of boredom or social anxiety (grabbing at pretzels when I’m at a party and don’t yet know anyone), but never literally ate something as a deliberate and hopeless effort to make myself feel psychologically better. I found an appropriate instrument to do so: my husband’s recently acquired stash of Cherry Garcia ice cream. Turns out that is one good fucking ice cream. While dishing up I got the most ludicrous phone scam call ever (“…calling from a business in nearby Ocean… Shores,” the young man nervously mispronounces in a thick, unrecognizable accent), and in my trademark way I was deliberately polite and courteous throughout the call which itself is an excellent exercise. Putting down the phone and I really did feel better, freed up. By then it was four PM and I’d muscled through the housework (devastating amounts of laundry today) and my kids were somehow behaving and I sat down with the bowl of ice cream and a great re-read of a book. And I staved off existential despair at least until Ralph got home.

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