Thursday, September 1, 2011

Little Earthquakes

Oh, these little earthquakes
Here we go again
Oh, these little earthquakes
Doesn't take much to rip us into pieces
Doesn't take much to rip us into pieces

-Tori Amos, "Little Earthquakes"

I typically review my day in my head and think about what is ahead the next day evey night as I brush my teeth before bed.  Most days I don't think about all the things I got accomplished, but agonize over all the things that I didn't get done and all the times I messed up...not as patient as I should have been, saying the wrong thing to one of the kids, missing an opportunity to get some clutter taken care of around the house.  In the grand scheme of things, these are minor infractions and I could list many justifiable reasons for why events unfolded as they did, my reactions or tasks left undone.  But these small failings haunt me.  They weigh on me as I struggle to find sleep at night or strain to get up in the morning to face it all over again.

I had a bit of a breakthrough this week in therapy.  This is going to sound silly, but it finally sunk in that things aren't really going to change.  Jeanne and Mike are not coming back.  E and M are part of our family.  The reality of being responsible for 5 children really sunk in.  This is my new life.

My real difficulty is that I still get stuck in the negative aspect of that reality and it shades my actions throughout the day.  My lack of patience.  My anger.  My sadness.  My desperation.  There are little snippets of positive that sometimes give me hope.  I try to write about these times.  Given the sheer magnitude of what we're I'm trying to do, it's hard to hold on to these moments to sustain me and help me be the person I want to be for my family.  I know I shouldn't hold myself up to such a high standard, but I sometimes feel that by cutting myself a bit of a break, it's like I'm dishonoring Jeanne's memory and minimizing the girls' loss.

I could list all my accomplishments every night to reassure myself that I'm doing okay, but instead my little failures throughout the day wear me down and rip me apart.  I really need to work on that.  Acknowledging that is a first step.  That's something at least.

1 comment:

  1. Cutting yourself a break is not dishonoring anybody. I'm sure your sister would be the first to say she doesn't expect you to be perfect. Perfect is unrealistic and kind of scary. Perfect is not a good example to hold up to your kids, because they won't be able to match it either. Perfect would imply that you don't need anything or anyone. Your pain proves you do. It's not a failing. It's the flip side of love. Loss means nothing if you didn't love anything to begin with. The depth of your love is breathtaking. That may be hard to live with sometimes, but it is certainly not a flaw.