The Reluctant Not-so-Super Not-so-Heroic Me

Posted on | May 30, 2011 | 16 Comments

Tomorrow, all of this becomes real.

I know that I haven’t lived in the same house with my “husband” since the beginning of April and these things should have been beaten into my brain by now,  but tomorrow means that all of this wasn’t just a bad dream.  Tomorrow I will get up, shower, get dressed, and start my new life.  Tomorrow I sever the ties that bound me to my husband… different job, different life, different woman.

Tomorrow is the new beginning: I start my new job; I start my new life.

For the past two months, I’ve been coasting.  I’ve been operating on auto-pilot; washing dishes and drying tears.  I’ve been writing stories and reading books… both with and without pictures.  I’ve been puttering around first the apartment in Savannah and then the house in Macon, biding my time.  Waiting.  And it wasn’t until mid-way through today that I realized what I’ve been waiting for.

I’ve been waiting to wake up.  I sat around in a nightmare-like state, head swimming, eyes only half opened, waiting for the moment when someone would pinch me and I could say “Aha!” and admit I was always suspicious that this was a dream or some type of Truman Show experiment.

And all of my wanting, wishing, and hoping has lead me to the 6:30 alarm set next to my bed.

Tomorrow, I have to wake up or at a minimum admit that this is what being awake feels like these days.

I’ve been moving through a cloud, viewing the world around me with a mix of amusement and disdain.  This wasn’t “my” world… this was some gray, misshapen dream world. I’ve been weathering the storms of emotions and trying my best to process how to take the next step.  It was hard enough working the two week notice at my old job… but then I morphed directly into a two week “holiday” where I served as a full-time, stay at home mom for J.  I was everything to him… morning and night, sun and moon, oil and water.   We fought and made up.  We lost our patience with each other and we threw some pretty big temper tantrums.  There were a lot of laughs and a lot of tears, his and mine. But somehow we both survived and as wonderful as survival feels, it’s not enough to put a spring in my step or a smile on my face in light of tomorrow.

I feel overwhelmed.

I feel lost.

I feel totally unprepared to take on a lifetime of single motherhood, much less a brand new lawyer job.

All day I’ve fought back tears, wondering why I can’t snap my fingers and magically return to the competent, strong, intelligent woman who graduated from law school not so long ago.  All day I’ve choked back the sobs that hover around the back of my throat, threatening to overtake my entire world, leaving me breathless, voiceless, and alone.  All day I’ve wanted to scream “THIS IS NOT FAIR” and throw my hands up or pull my hair out.

I do not want to go back to work.

I do not want to go back into an office with drama and case files and responsibility. I want the luxury of spending six months lying in bed with the covers pulled over my face, not knowing if it’s night or day and not caring anyway.

But who am I kidding.  That was never in the cards for me.  I have student loans to pay and a child who needs me to be the adult that my drivers license says I am.  Tomorrow, I reluctantly embrace my inner adult and return to work… kicking and screaming.

And though I’d like to be sticking out my chin, shaving my legs, and laying out an outfit for the first day, I am not. (For one thing, I still can’t find my damn razor).  Instead of being strong, competent and controlled, I find myself lost, yet again, in the maze of heartache that seems tethered to my ankle.  I find myself wondering why I’m here, struggling through yet another sleepless night and “terrible two” filled day alone, while my husband now lives the bachelor life he hid while we were married.  I find myself lost in the tedious details of being “me” in the face of being “mom”… always and always, etc.,  ad nauseum, repeat.  I do not miss my husband, but I miss the life I should have been able to have with him.  I mourn the loss of that wide-eyed smile I see in my wedding pictures and wonder what happened to that girl.  I miss the me I wanted to be, the mother I wanted to be, the husband I should have had.  I can not do all the things I want to do with J or be the mother I want him to have because I am so overworked, overtired and overwhelmed by just being awake and alive amidst this back breaking, bone crunching heartache and anger my husband left behind along with his assorted guitar picks and old wool sweaters.

And tomorrow, as if being a single mother amidst this crushing tidal wave is not enough, I become a single mother lawyer.  Tomorrow, I pull out my cape and dust off my mask, and gingerly step into the uncomfortable shoes of being a reluctant sometime-superhero… a single working mother

I am scared and alone.

I am heartbroken and angry.

I am mind numbingly tired.

And to be honest? For all my attempts to make it anything else, this new beginning seems to weigh the same as any unhappy ending.


16 Responses to “The Reluctant Not-so-Super Not-so-Heroic Me”

  1. Frelle
    May 30th, 2011 @ 9:03 pm

    Ill be thinking about you and praying for you. Im still in that inbetween stage, but I dont have the sorrow that you do, sapping my strength. Mine is resentment and bitterness and anger at being held captive in a house I have wanted to leave since September.


  2. Pam
    May 30th, 2011 @ 9:09 pm

    You are exhausted, angry, overwhelmed and scared – but you are not alone. You’ve said much of what I’ve thought and worried and felt alone about. You aren’t alone. I’ll say it again – you aren’t alone. Even when it feels like you are drowning in quicksand. Even when J is crying and you are crying and you know the alarm is going to ring soon. You are not alone. You are doing what you need to do to survive and that is enough.

  3. Mama Track
    May 30th, 2011 @ 9:11 pm

    From one lawyer mom to another, I’m wishing you luck tomorrow and over the next few weeks. I know how hard going back after maternity leave was–I can only imagine what you are going through.

    Good luck. And hang in there!

  4. Tara@DoTheseKidsMakeMeLookCrazy?
    May 30th, 2011 @ 9:18 pm

    As I’ve commented before, I am in month six of not living with my husband. I, too, am changing my job. My old job needed me to work too many hours for very very very little pay. So, onto a new business that has great potential, IF I can drag myself out of my inner pit of sadness long enough to do what needs to be done.

    During the last few months, work has been a place where I feel competent. Where people have problems that are so much bigger than mine. It’s busy, requires my full-attention, and it’s important. Now that I’m leaving that position, I fear that I won’t be able to have these same things in my new position.

    But I need to make sure I can provide for my children. And as I said above, this COULD be a career move that I strive in.

    So, that’s my long-winded way of telling you that I hope this new job does what my old job has done for me. I hope it’s a job that makes you feel valued and competent. I hope your coworkers recognize that you are a strong woman, a good lawyer, and a role-model for other single mothers. I hope it grounds you, provides you will a sense of structure and purpose, and gives you a reprieve from your grief.

  5. Mrs. MidAtlantic
    May 30th, 2011 @ 9:23 pm

    Good luck, Momma. I’ll be thinking of you tomorrow!

  6. Janet
    May 30th, 2011 @ 9:45 pm

    Try to compartmentalize your life.(that helped me to seperate)This is one of the absolutely parts of you that he can’t touch & don’t let him steal that from you. You are a lawyer that obviously is incredibly talented and worthy of this job. Your son will love you when you come home and tough as it is…Remember, a step forward at a time to independance and a future that you determine. You are going to shine tomorrow!

  7. strugglingforeverafter
    May 30th, 2011 @ 9:49 pm

    Hugs. I feel for you. hope it goes well.

  8. Steph
    May 30th, 2011 @ 10:27 pm

    Just do what you have to do. No more, no less. Don’t force it, let it come. I have to believe that if you do that you will be OK. The more, the super, it will come. For now, be the best you that you are required to be and let the little things go. ((((HUGS))))

  9. Erica Snipes
    May 30th, 2011 @ 10:31 pm

    From one lawyer mom to another…I’ll be thinking of you. The gal who said that this new job, and your career in general I guess, is the one thing that has always been absolutely yours, and that you must not let that miserable ex steal from you. Hard? Hell yes. Tiring? Sure. Drama, annoyances, too-large case files? Yep, yep, yep. But it is all YOURS. You are the one who went to law school, you are the one who studied for hours until you thought your eyes would cross, you are the one who passed the bar exam so you could work in an exciting field and do good work. That, among other countless and fantastic things, will be the woman that J is proud to call mom. And that is the miracle and beautiful person that your ex has lost. I also agree with the compartmentalizing things comment. As much as you can do this, you absolutely should. You know that you have lots of people who will be thinking about you and praying for you tomorrow. I hope this helps. Sending big hugs to you and your beautiful little boy, and hopefully his weekend at his father’s was okay.

  10. Headmistress Yca
    May 30th, 2011 @ 10:39 pm

    Give yourself a pep-talk in the morning as you’re getting ready. As you put on each piece of clothing, audibly state a reason for why you’re doing what you’re doing. Because you enjoy being a lawyer. Because J deserves an awesome mom. Because there are people out there that need justice. Because because because. Just don’t get a runner in your panty hose from your leg stubble – that would suck. 😉 You can do this, LM. I know it doesn’t seem like it but you’ve already come so far. Tomorrow is going to be hard, but its not as hard as you’ve faced before. You can do this!!!

  11. Rachel D
    May 31st, 2011 @ 12:12 am

    Hang in there. There are tons of people out here in cyberspace sending you strength and hoping it gets easier every day.

  12. Linda Hoy
    May 31st, 2011 @ 1:04 am

    Best of luck! Hoping that returning to the world of work will reconnect you to the strong confident and competent YOU that you ARE! And give you a respite from the world of Mommyhood.

  13. LegallyInsaneMommy
    May 31st, 2011 @ 8:40 am

    The one good thing about law is that it is always crazy busy and a good distraction from regular mommy life when you need it. You can always try family law. It’s sure to give you enough crazy, whacked out tales and reassure you that no matter how bad your day is going, you have it more under control than your client!

    My thoughts and prayers are with you. Go kick some butt!

  14. KLZ
    May 31st, 2011 @ 10:48 am

    I’m sending positive vibes and pink snowballs your ways.

  15. sarah
    May 31st, 2011 @ 3:33 pm

    one day at a time
    one hour at a time
    one minute at a time
    one second at a time

    whatever helps you get through this….
    its easy to say things will get better because right now….its not
    just take deep breaths….
    thinking about you today!!

  16. KristinaYellow
    May 31st, 2011 @ 7:13 pm

    I am so moved. You write so clearly that I feel like I am sitting here, listening to you speak. I can feel what you are sharing. And I ache for you. This is NOT FAIR. This SUCKS. I want to scream for you and figure out how to make it easier for you. But all I can do is read your words, send positive thoughts and prayers, and hope that you have at least one sweet smile from J and a restful night tonight. Please know you are not alone. You are strong. You are loved. You are a super-mom. Reread some of your favorite comments from previous posts–ones that make you smile.

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