We need to go on a date. It has been a million years since we have seen a movie, had a cup of coffee, or even taken a solo walk.
These days our exchanges go something like this:
Enter John, home from work:
Him-”How’s the little one?”
Me-”Great! She did This, That and The Other today.”
Me-”How was your day.”
Him-”Sucked as usual, but I don’t really wanna talk about that, I just need to get a new job. Stat.”
Me: K. Well, sorry to be a bummer, but there’s a bill we really need to pay by tomorrow. It’s probably caused by something I’ve done, needed or wanted.
John: Ah, shit, really?
Me: (Dripping with disproportionate anger and sarcasm) Yes, reeeally. Sorry to have made your day worse once again.
I storm off.
We have no in-laws in the Hamptons where we can plop our kids for the weekend. John’s brother is too busy being fabulous to stop by. My aunt has no tolerance for the young of the human species. John is unwilling to enlist the extended Haitian family members who are scattered nearby.
So we have my mom. My saving grace, financial assistant (even though she has no money herself), and constant babysitter.
My mom and John can’t stand each other. Well, that’s how it used to be anyway. Over the years they have evolved through the following sentiments: I-will-call-the-cops-if-you-even-look-at-me; You may briefly approach to conduct your necessary business with your child/grandchild; Gritted Greetings through Gritted teeth; falsely cordial hellos; tolerance of extended exposure in the form of holidays etc., and finally grossly exaggerated cheerfulness, borne out of necessity.
My mother is CONSTANTLY here.
a.) She no longer works
b.) I have a little girl and an older boy with special attention needs (he is a genius with serious issues-another post, another time), and I need help.
c.) She doesn’t strive to make a life other than caring for her grandchildren. It is problematic: I want her to be happy and John has no space, and I feel stifled.
Here’s the bugger of it all- she no longer can afford her apartment and will be MOVING INTO OUR BASEMENT!
It can end in nothing but tears.
- She moves to inexpensive Guatamala and visits frequently.
- She moves here and visits inexpensive Guatamala frequently.
- She moves to my grandfather’s house in the Nuclear Wasteland of the California desert, rendering her miserable and me bereft.
- She moves in here full time and we try to make it work.