Friday, May 9, 2008

1:20 a.m.


I'm tangled in my bathrobe, which I am still wearing after getting up to comfort my son who cried out in nightmares. From inside my pocket, Thomas the Tank engine jabs me in the hip. He is yet another symbol of all that I cannot accomplish in a given day. A Christmas gift of Duncan's, Thomas was relegated to my pocket when his Chinese-produced face fell off the engine part thingy, for which I have no name because I am a woman who never imagined parenting a boy. Each day I am reminded of my inability simply to Superglue Thomas' face back on.

I have not yet slept. In fact, the people in my house (all three of us) have slept only intermittently this evening. The moon must be full. Caffeine has not been my friend today. My nerves are jangly, and the ambient noise drills pinpricks in my eyeballs. Whatever the opposite of ambient noise is (imbient noise? interbient noise?) it is hammering from the inside of my brain to get out. Even the sound of my husband breathing is interrupting my ability to slip into sleep. The furnace, which usually provides a jarring rumble of sound, is my only respite from the auditory disasters inside and outside my head. If the furnace would stay on, I might have a fighting chance at sleep.

This is the third time this week I had difficulty sleeping. I am to blame. Coffee, laptop addiction, an inability to leave work at home. I suspect it is primarily the light from my laptop screen, which I have recently read has detrimental effects on sleep. It is also a crazy time of year at school; each day, even though I have written my commitments in no fewer than 3 different calendars, my brain struggles to remember that this is the day: I'm administering diagnostic testing; working with Marcie; meeting with Devin; going to the doctor; picking up Duncan; getting a hair cut. Eventually, I will drop one of the balls I am juggling, and I can only hope it will be something benign yet irresponsible. Tilly says it's the state of modern motherhood; we all try to do too much. I have to agree though I have no point of reference. This is the only life, the only motherhood, I know.

So here I am, drinking warm milk, trying to unify the wife daughter mother sister friend employee teacher student teacher-friend (don't be offended if I omitted anyone) me's of me...and we're all really, really tired...and we can't sleep.
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