Saturday, January 15, 2011

Of Friends and Enemies

I have an archenemy.  I'm not a comic book character, but I have an archenemy.  A vile one that gets the best of me sometimes.  My own self-doubt is my worst enemy.  Most times, I manage to beat it down into submission.  To send it running off into hiding.  But, then like any determined villain, it is back.  Stalking me through darkened alley ways.  Jumping out from behind a bush and overpowering me. Time to send up the bat signal.

When the beacon is lit with the questioning, "Anyone want to help me out here?"  there is always an answering response.  It comes in the form of my best friend.  And, it's always a, "Yes". 

This past week and a half has been a difficult one.  There is no need for life to pile on the hurts, and yet it doesn't seem able to help itself.  Within the past week and a half I have been laid off from my full-time job that I've held for five years.  Lost my aunt in a car accident on an icy road.  And, the trifecta was receiving my rejection letter from a company that I had interviewed with.  Oh, and did I mention that I am turning forty in a few weeks? 

The rejection letter came in the mail last night.  My husband had just left for work.  My son was waiting for his friend to show up for a sleep over.  I fetched the mail and knew what it was as soon as I saw the return address.  And, don't you know, it was all just too much.  I stood in my kitchen, hiding from my son (only extreme hunger and dehydration brings him in the room where possible chores await) and cried my eyes out.  I cried for the denied job that I had wanted so badly.  I cried for the aunt with whom I spent so many weekends camping and boating.  I cried for the fact that I wasn't given a severance and unemployment won't be finished processing my claim for at least a month. 

Now, I'm not a selfish person.  And, if there is anything in this world I love to share it is my misery.  So, I sent texts to my husband.  Frantic, hysterical texts.  He was at work and isn't allowed to use his phone or the company phone.  But, I think he enjoys hearing from me all the same.  Next, I gladly shared my misery with my friend.  Texts again.  I didn't want to talk.  I don't like people to actually hear or see me cry.  Reading about it in a text is fine, though.  Instantly she responds to my bat signal.   I won't bore you with the details but, on my part it went mostly like this, "Why? Why?  I'm so pathetic.  I'm a loser.  Why? Why?" 

Then I cut to the chase.  The whole painful part about all this is the fact that I won't be able to provide my son with the things I want for him.  Not anytime soon.  While the boy faithfully watches commercials of Nickelodeon cruises and Disney World trips and dreams of his summer vacation, I am mired in reality.  There will be no vacation this summer.  No trips to the movies or out to dinner or special treats just because.  One of the last texts to her says it all for me, "I just want to be able to give my son a better life than what I had."  The response, "U ALREADY HAVE!!" is like a slap to my face.  Snap out of it, girl.  I wipe away the tears and go find my boy.
     "Do you know that your mommy and daddy love you?  And always will no matter what?"
     "Do you know that your mommy and daddy love each other?"
     "Do you think that your house is a happy place?"
     "Yeeaahh.", he is beginning to be wary of my popping up with a bunch of weird questions.  "I always have a lot of fun here every day.", he says simply.

I smile.  Maybe my son's happiness has as much to do with the Xbox as it has to do with his parents, but I'm taking it.  My friend who knows me as well as I know myself is correct.  I have accomplished the most important goal I have ever set for myself.  My name is Angii.  I'm unemployed.  I'm overweight and have too many gray hairs in my head.  I have no future prospects.  But, I have a son who's the member of a happy and loving family.  And, I have a friend that helps me vanquish my enemy.  If only I could wear that Wonder Woman costume and look good doing it.

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