Worst mom ever? or just like the rest of you?
remembering the day we ventured tentatively into the gym to watch the tumult of small children as they practiced their forms, I feel a bitter emptiness in the pit of my stomach tonight. though I can't help but smile while thinking about my son's giddiness as he tied the white belt around his dobok that first time, one size too large, stiff and white, fresh and new. four belts later and worn in nicely from repeated washings, it finally fits him just right. I puff my breath out in defeat as the clarity of our collective disappointment dawns over his sweet face: "Listen honey, I'm sorry, but...I simply can't afford to pay for your karate anymore. I feel really awful about it, but I only have enough money to cover this month's rent, and nothing else - I really am sorry, and I feel like the worst mom ever." this is just the next step in my downward spiral, as the car insurance, electricity, and phone will be the next to go, and in quick succession, as I lose the battle of trying to make my unemployment check stretch as far as my former paycheck (we've been rationing food, as well). so I send the little light of my life off to bed with an empty belly, and a heart full of disappointment, but with a great big hug and reassurance that I love him more than all the grains of sand on all the beaches in all the world. will it be enough? it has to be enough...I hope it's enough. it will never be enough...
getting into my pajamas and slipping between the dirty sheets I can't afford to wash, I attempt to modulate my breath in that way that brings on sleep, but it's no use tonight. I lie awake all night, wondering what I'm going to do to - the stress of not knowing how I'm going to keep us from drowning eating away at my confidence, burning me up inside like the fire that consumed my friend's house not two nights ago. and that's what I tell myself in the dark - how lucky and blessed I am to be sleeping in my own bed (even if the sheets aren't as clean as I'd like), in my own apartment (that's hopefully mine for at least one more month, unless the rent check bounces, which I fear it will), worried about the kind of thing some people would consider an extravagant luxury. heaving a last, defeated sigh for the night, I curl myself into the pillows and snuggle down in my blankets, while sending prayers out to my friends who will be displaced for many months to come. my eyes close on a wish for a dream of My Utopia, a shining vision in my mind where everyone gets what they need without question, and sometimes, a few things they simply would like to have, as well. like a martial arts mentor who would give freely of their knowledge and time, because self-discipline, focus, and self-defense are skills that a great many folks could benefit from - the least of which not being my son.
sorry for the depressing post, but that's the situation I find myself in just now - and yes, this one is a true story. far cry from the playful romp of fiction I dropped on you all last week, huh?