Ruby Craven, seven weeks old, by Karen Craven
Career Journey Motherhood

“So Bitchy I Can’t Stand Myself” Kind of Day

Melancholy. Numb. Ambivalent. Nothing good in those words. On most days I can flip those words inside out and find a bright side or silver lining, but today it's just not there. Last Tuesday my friend had a bad day. She woke up angry. She could not put her finger on it. She thought maybe she was letting too many people manager her time. She went to read her usual pick me ups. She tried to journal. Nothing worked. I told her she was having an "I'm so bitchy I can't stand myself" kind of day. 

Good things come to those who ask. I’ve long believed it to be true. But I’m not feeling today, or this week for that matter. My horoscope warned me I would feel blah this week; something with the phase of the moon.

Melancholy. Numb. Ambivalent. Nothing good in those words. On most days I can flip those words inside out and find a bright side or silver lining, but today it’s just not there. Last Tuesday my friend had a bad day. She woke up angry. She could not put her finger on it. She thought maybe she was letting too many people manage her time. She went to read her usual pick me ups. She tried to journal. Nothing worked. I told her she was having an “I’m so bitchy I can’t stand myself” kind of day.

Today it’s my turn.

Today, the world seems heavy. Career. Taxes. House. The weight and enormity of these things are great. Every day I walk this through this house and see his abandoned bedroom. It’s now a catch all of boxes, clothes, linens, and books all carefully placed around the room’s interior walls as if still surrounding a bed that is not there. I don’t need all this space. My options to leave are few. Most rentals in the area are comparable to my mortgage, and few if any will allow a tenant three dogs.

It’s one of those days, where the what ifs just run through my head. What if we didn’t adopt Ruby last year? What if I sold the house last Spring when I said I would? What if, what? What if everything was ok? Then I’d be bitching that everything is ok.

Stuck. Foggy. Weighted. Discouraged. This bleak landscape outside my window gives me chills despite the warm air coming from heating vent beneath my feet, dutifully blowing from the furnace underneath the office.

A friend asked me what my purpose was last week. That’s a big question. I tried to drill it down to being happy and enjoying life in all of its moments. Motherhood is a big part of that. Being needed is a big part of that. My daughter is growing up fast. She doesn’t need me like she once did. My post surgery healing has grounded me from yoga; my friends’ lives go on without me. I also have had to limit the walks with the dogs, and while they can get antsy, their lives are just fine. It feels good to be needed and wanted.

Which is why I think I am so bitchy? Nobody wants me. Nobody needs me. My skills are unwanted. My experience is not valued. Last week I started with a proclamation that I will find somewhere where I will fit. Somewhere that I will and can make a difference. I’ve covered my ears when some friends have said, places like that don’t exist. I don’t want to believe them. But I am. At least today anyway.

This is not the frustration of a freshman job seeker. This is years of frustration. Every new opportunity requires you to rehash the past. It’s not visions of sugar plums, whatever the hell they are. It’s nightmares of Blagojevich, union issues at ISBE, #metoo playing out time and again, the loss of grant funding, the eliminated position from an acquisition, etc. Instead of reveling in my career’s accomplishments, Taleo and every other godforsaken people management system make me feel like a human punching bag. I’m the one beating myself up. You know when you take the hands of a little kid and start slapping their faces. “Why are you are hitting yourself?” It’s all fun and games, and the kid laughs. I can hear my nieces screaming at me and nearly choking on their giggles in the same breath, “Stop it, Aunt Karen!” Well, I wish I could stop slapping myself. Maybe I would knock some sense into me if I could.

I come back to me my old mantra of tomorrow is an opportunity to make a new ending. Maybe a good night’s sleep and an attitude adjustment will have me seeing the sunny side of things again tomorrow.

Mantra

2 comments on ““So Bitchy I Can’t Stand Myself” Kind of Day

  1. For me transitions, like gestation, are rough and make me feel powerless. But a change is being born. Acknowledge it, ride it out, laugh, cry, wallow, whatever it takes. The new life WILL be born. As a reader I see your strength easily, but I know it may not be visible to you. I appreciate your sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

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