If we were having coffee you might raise an eyebrow at my SoCo and Coke. “I thought we were having coffee?” you might ask. To which I’d reply, “Coffee isn’t strong enough to help me face life.” Self-medication might not be healthy, but it helps me not to care that it’s not healthy. It also helps me cope with the struggles I face.
Working two jobs fucking blows. I have never felt so worn down. I am working 6 days a week. 40 hours at one job and 17 at the other. Any free time I have is spent with my children.
Well, with one of my children.
Baby C has had a disastrous start to his education. The ADHD I suspected he had going in to kindergarten has been confirmed with all the grace of a wrecking ball taking down a wall built with Legos. He has trouble focusing. He has trouble following direction. He’s disruptive in class. He has punched other students. He has kicked other students. He has spent entire afternoons with the “behavioral specialist.”
My son is brilliant. He has no problem learning the material in class. He knows his letters. He knows his sight words. He can count way past 100. I have to stop him simply because he’d count all day long and I have things to do. He knows his colors. He can sound words out.
What he can’t do is get past himself. Everything has to be his way or he simply loses his shit. He wears an imaginary crown and expects everyone else to bow down to his will. Some of this is typical 5-year-old behavior. Most of it is just inexplicable.
A month ago (or so) we scheduled an appointment with his doctor to have him evaluated for ADHD. We filled out forms. His teacher filled out forms. He was prescribed medication. The results have been less than spectacular.
Initially, he seemed to improve at school. The longer he’s been on the medication, however, the angrier he’s become. That’s when he started hitting other children at school. He began having outbursts of anger at home. Just today he’s yelled at me twice. It may not seem like a big deal, but he’s never, ever yelled at me before two days ago.
I’m done. I’m calling his doctor on Monday and demanding he be switched to a different medication.
One of the benefits of working at a school corporation is having access to hundreds of teachers who have dealt with every type of child one can encounter. They have a certified counselor on staff with whom I’ve been able to discuss Baby C’s difficulties. I have a medication in mind I want to try and a plan on how to attack C’s issues. While I’m thankful for that fighting this battle on top of everything else I’m going through is taking its toll on me.
If we were having coffee I’d confess I’m emotionally dead. I’ve unwittingly built a wall around myself and heartbreaks of the past have paid for it. It’s been a long time since I’ve felt anything, good or bad. I actually had a coworker say to me the other day, “You don’t ever talk to us.”
“I’m here to make money, not socialize,” was my response. Without hesitation. Without thought. And it’s true. I don’t have time for any of that bullshit. I’ve got shit to take care of. I’m there to earn a paycheck so I can catch up on my bills and have money to pay for the things my children need. I don’t have time for any kind of drama. I don’t want to listen to anyone bitching about their problems. I’ve got my own I’m trying to deal with.
The counselor I alluded to earlier told me that I was in survival mode when I confessed that I’d run out of empathy. My coworker is having similar problems with her 4-year-old. Unfortunately, I can’t muster up a shred of empathy for her. I just don’t give a shit. A part of me knows there’s something wrong with that. Unfortunately, I don’t give a shit.
If we were having coffee I’d tell you that I’m tired of politics. I’m tired of listening to Trump spewing his idiotic rhetoric. I’m tired of his whining. I’m tired of the lies foaming from his orange mouth. I’m also tired of Hillary spewing her bullshit and acting like she’s got the interests of the regular American at heart. I can’t stand that she keeps bringing up Russia every time someone confronts her about the WikiLeaks emails instead of directly answering the questions. I don’t trust either one of those fools and I feel like no matter who wins we’re fucked. It’s an indictment of our democracy that these are the best two candidates our government could put forth.
If we were having coffee I’d tell you that I’m fed up with all the clowns indignant because of NFL players kneeling during the anthem. The National Anthem and the American flag represent more than just our military. They represent our entire nation. Anyone who is confused by this doesn’t understand what the flag stands for. Colin Kaepernick and the other NFL players taking a knee during the anthem are absolutely NOT disrespecting the military. They are simply trying to bring attention to the fact that an inordinate number of minorities are being slain by white police officers. That’s it. They are upset that veterans of our military aren’t getting the medical care they need after sacrificing their lives and bodies for their nation. They are upset that “liberty and justice for all” isn’t actually for all. I get that people are tuning into football to escape the shittiness of reality, but that doesn’t change the fact that their message needs to be heard and acknowledged. This is not a nation I’m proud of. Yes, it’s a better place to live than most, but let’s not act like it’s perfect. We are flawed. Not all men (or women) are treated equally. This is NOT the land of the free.
If we were having coffee I’d apologize for going on for so long, but explain that I’ve got a lot on my plate. I’d then open my ears to listen to anything you have to say. After all is said and done, I’d probably give you a hug and apologize for being so distant. I don’t mean to be, but that’s just how I feel. I’d tell you I hope you’re all doing well and that things are looking up for you. Then I’d go crawl back inside the hole I’ve been hiding in.