Tuesday, November 1, 2011

My Day - 11-01-11

I am a single mother with a full-time, oddly demanding job.
My job only pays me $30,000 per year.
It is a 1-hour commute each way.

In 1990 I started a newspaper for the theatre industry.
— It was very successful.
— It ran for 20 years, though the last 10 have been hard and it has now all but closed.
— I am writing this on the internet.
— The last two sentences are related.

Today, I faced:

Getting my kids out the door for school.

Working from home in the morning because I had to...

Pick up one of my daughters and take her to the dentist because she had a cavity.

Watching as the dentist manhandled her, then charge me $520.
— Knowing that I couldn’t really get a better dentist because I don’t have dental insurance and only make $30,000 a year.
— Feeling ashamed.

While at the dentist holding my daughter down, missing a call from someone who wants to talk to me about taking over the business that is now all but closed.

Watching my daughter scream and cry from the pain and fear, because nobody explained to her what was going to happen, and they apparently didn’t numb her enough.

Feeling completely inadequate as a parent.

Knowing that “inadequate” is an inadequate word.

Coming home and being reminded that I have to take a university online ethics seminar, by tomorrow, for a part-time job that I have had since May, but have never actually worked.
— You work when they call you in.
— I’ve never been called in.
— But I have spent a fair amount of time doing administrative stuff for the university’s system.

Trying to sign up for the online ethics seminar, only to find that my ID and password don’t work.

Calling the university, getting the password and ID reset after a half an hour on the phone, then trying to log on again and finding it still didn’t work.

Getting an e-mail from the web developer for the business that is all but gone saying that he’s now able to do what he was supposed to do a year and a half ago, and knowing that the piece that’s hanging on will simply stop if I don’t do it.
— It will take an enormous amount of time and energy to get this done – by next week.
— If I don't get it done, my chances of passing the business on become almost nil.

Sitting with my daughter on the couch, making her soup and yogurt and applesauce and eating the same thing, even though I was starving, because I didn’t want to make her feel bad.

Working while sitting next to her and watching bad TV before going to pick up her sister from school.

Calling the state of Illinois’ Vital Check system to get copies of birth certificates for my daughters.
— I need the birth certificates because I need to sign them up for All Kids state insurance.
— This makes me feel more ashamed.

Being told by the Vital Check person that I needed to have the father’s name, and, after explaining to her that there was no father, but that there is another mother’s name on the birth certificate, having her ask me if I adopted my children and then having her tell me that the other mother has to ask for the birth certificates because “there can only be one mother.”

Holding my temper and just getting it done, while my daughter was pointing at the phone and making “cuckoo” signs.

Being asked by my daughter if she can use my computer.
— My computer was purchased in 2008 and is therefore old in computer years.
— My even older computer that the girls have can’t support the newer online game sites.
— I can’t afford a new computer.

Suddenly losing it, standing at the refrigerator, as my daughter looked on after she asked if she could use the computer.

Getting comforted by my 9-year-old. My 9-year-old whose mouth hurts.

Feeling completely inadequate as a parent.

Knowing again that “inadequate” is a horribly inadequate word.

Wanting nothing more than to just sit down in the middle of my incredibly messy house and not move anymore.

Writing this instead.


  1. Carrie:

    Something was in retrograde, I'm sure of it. You are incredible. I am in awe of you- I don't know how you do it. But you do. And sometimes just getting out of bed IS A CHOICE. And it's a start.

    You are not inadequate. You are just in the belly of the whale. It's a big whale, and you may need to get a bigger boat.

  2. What a horrible day. I can't believe the dentist didn't talk her through what was going to happen! Yikes. Well, that mixed with everything else...tomorrow can't be any worse, right?!

  3. I *just* found your blog after some serious googling. I have a six year old daughter and a seven year old son, and I feel like I'm at the intersection of two of the loneliest identities in the world - lesbian and single mom. It kinda blows.

    Anyhoo, I've had - actually HAVE, all the time - days like this. Thanks for putting yourself out there. The suckage is still there, but feeling a little less alone pretty much rocks.

  4. I'm very much late to this but keep mowing forward. :)