I am having one of those weeks. By one of those, I mean a fighting through depression week. It feels like this: two sandbags attached to my forehead, a thrumming in my chest, a bad attitude. I am not the kind of depressive who takes to my bed. I am the kind that gets cranky, edgy, stomping. A lot like The Little Asshole. I’m trying my best to keep it together, but I’m struggling.
The depressive funk started, I think, on date night. My husband and I were in one of those huge, vinyl booths at P.F. Chang’s China Bistro enjoying Chicken Lettuce Wraps when I looked up and saw a women sitting at a table nearby. She looked like my mother. I did a double take. For a minute my brain betrayed me and I thought: MOM! And then I was snapped back to reality. It’s not her. She’s dead. Still. Always.
I was suddenly filled with the most intense longing.
I want my mom back.
In a matter of seconds fast and furious tears started streaming down my face. I hate crying. And I especially hate crying in public. I don’t think that there’s anything wrong with crying or with crying in public, but I just feel like if I start to cry I’ll never be able to stop. That I’ll be swallowed up by the grief and carted off to the place they keep people who have a chronic weeping problem.
So there was that. The missing. The longing. The grief. Like a rusty anchor holding me in place for days.
I decided that since I was pissed off and sad, it would be good to take action. Do something rather than just tweeting and stewing. I decided to tackle the playroom.
For a few weeks I’ve been ignoring what has been going on in the playroom. The big kids have been having fun up there and we’ve been allowing the 2-year-old to hang out with them because he seems to have passed the put everything in your mouth phase. Well, I had no idea. The concept of “wreaking havoc” has never been so well-defined.
When I opened the door I seriously could’ve passed out. It looked like toy hell. If I was the OCD type I would’ve required instant institutionalization.
Every single game that we’d amassed in the last eight years via birthday gifts, holiday presents, etc. had been unceremoniously tossed out of the box, across the room, in every corner.
The cherries from High Ho Cherry-O were mixed with Candy Land cards, Bingo chips, and Tiny pieces of the U-Build Mouse Trap Game. Game boards were stomped on, spinners and dice were in the doll house, and I can’t even begin to describe the state of those slutty Bratz dolls.
Let’s just say that it looked like the Bratz dolls had been through a war. They were missing feet, arms, legs. Their hair was matted and random High Ho Cherry-Os were sticking out at odd angles. Someone had tried to replace a Bratz head with a Barbie head. Polly Pockets were naked. Barbies were face-down, shoved in a corner of the doll house like a bunch of passed out heroin addicts.
The games weren’t the only thing that got tossed across the room. Every puzzle, too. Hundreds of tiny puzzle pieces mixed together on the carpet. Those teeny tiny Polly Pocket clothes and accessories mixed in with the puzzle pieces. And apparently the dog had been allowed in the playroom, too, because a handful of the puzzle pieces were chewed to bits. I was sure somewhere under all the toys I’d find a dried up dog turd. It was only a matter of time.
I had two choices: 1. Freak the fuck out. 2. Burn down the house.
Burn down the house was my choice, but I couldn’t find matches, so I took a box of industrial sized floral scented trash cans up to the playroom and tossed every single thing on the floor into a bag while singing Missy Elliott’s “Work It” at the top of my lungs.
Between singing, “Love the way my ass go bum-bum-bum-bum/Keep your eyes on my bum-bum-bum-bum-bum” I swore to myself that I would never buy my kids more toys ever dammit, and that I would be selling them to a soup kitchen for a lifetime of volunteer hours, and that my two-year old would be enrolled in an early therapy course for the tiny sociopath.
You know what happened? After tossing all of those toys, and trying to pluck the High Ho Cherry-Oh cherries from the Bratz doll’s hair, I started to feel a little better. And a little part of me felt like my mom was probably watching and having a good laugh (at me, definitely at me). So, I may not have all my pieces, but I think it’s going to be okay.