Oh, I do try to hang in there. I really do. I know better days are coming. At 4:30 AM this morning I was holding my one-year-old trying to get him to go back to sleep, and it was frustrating, and I had no one to help me. I know single mothers have this experience all the time, and I know that my one-year-old has the same experience as well.
I finally got him down after rocking him back to sleep for 45 minutes or so, stepping back and forth in this dance that seems to comfort him. I watched some of an episode of the Wire to stop myself from dwelling on the situation that has lead to being a single parent, co-parenting with their mother. When I finally was brave enough to try lying down again,
All things considered, I got through the night relatively unscathed. He slept a solid six hours straight-through before beginning his routine of waking every hour or so. I slept about six hours in total last night, though not consecutively. Tonight, I'll do it all over again.
When I'm exhausted, I don't let myself go to the gym because I know I'll likely injure myself. That keeps me off of my training, and prevents me from getting the adrenaline high that makes me better about the way my life is turning out. The rhythm of my week becomes irregular and that makes me cranky and then the mood goes downhill from there.
I'm trying to constantly remember that things will get better. But then I'm reminded of how lousy things are right now. I had to kill some time this morning before dropping the kids off with their babysitter, and we went to Milano to get my daughter a waffle. A young woman came in and smiled at me and the kids. She was holding a "Becoming Pregnant" book and I had mentioned how "rewarding" it was when they don't quite sleep through the night.
"Oh, my husband will be there to help me," she said. And, ever since, I can't shake this feeling that I'm incredibly alone in the world. I know I have friends, and I know I have family, but I'm in this all by myself now. Sometimes I have strength to face it. Other times I have to use that strength to keep from getting knocked over.
I have faith that better days are coming, and that all of the parties involved in this little soap opera will find themselves in a better situation. I want to stop dwelling, but I live here in this moment and some times the moments aren't so great.
Other moments, though, like my son waking up with a smile, completely oblivious of how much he's affecting my mood, is worth it. He's such a beautiful little boy and I'm proud to be his dad. I just want to be worthy of him and wonder how to fix myself so that I can accomplish that goal.