Low (from The Batmom December 2012)

I’m a bobber. I frequently dive down to a dark place, scream and cry and fuss, then just as quickly bob up again and get on with it. My psychology is similar to that of the rubber ducky. And Chumbawamba.

The last couple weeks I’ve dived into mud, and it’s grown thicker, an oozing combination of grief + holidays + old problems needing new approaches. I’m not clinically depressed, though I'm incredibly sad. I’m not unmoving, though I've considerably slowed. My life has not reached the melodramatic status of a Lifetime movie. (Should it become one, I assume Meredith Baxter is available.)

But I’m not bobbing back up. And I'm overwhelmed.

I skipped a writing session this weekend because my mind was muddled, and I haven’t been able to properly write for days. I’ve spent my sprints editing poems again and again and again, but if I whittle anymore, I’ll be left with five blank sheets and a pile of words on the floor demanding a dustpan.

I vow that this week, I will write my four sprints. I will update my blog. Because it’s good for me, but also simply because life has become a mental clusterf*** and I need to impose order.

I got up this morning to a faulty coffee machine (because sometimes the little things jump aboard the Shit Train too) and now I’m babbling to you so I can e-mail my GLOWing friend Rebecca with the subject line “Sprint #1 Done.” Which will signify accomplishment + the imposition of order, at least for 35 minutes of today.

The cliché thing to note right now is what a blessing children are, but it’s 100 percent true. The other night, after a day of mourning, my small niece crawled onto my father’s lap, and it made him smile and it made me smile.

Kids don’t have to be cute to keep you going. Much of the time they’re tiny tyrants. They’re hungry, bored, naked, dirty, thirsty, late, tired, not tired, overwhelmed, underwhelmed, missing a crayon a book a sneaker a sock.

Thank god for that. The reason I got out of bed this morning was not to greet the rain or write this post, but to fill my son’s Star Wars lunchbox and to fold my daughter’s endless supply of leggings.

The reason I won’t climb into bed this afternoon is because we are, finally, going to pick out the Christmas tree. We will cover it in fat colored lights and tacky beloved ornaments and we will shatter a few glass balls along the way. We will listen to obnoxious Christmas music and I will still be sad but I will be happy, too. Because I am, still, lucky. Lucky to have had the people I'm now missing, and lucky to have the people I still have. And because I do, every day, have solid and worthy reasons to get out of bed.

It’s 6:59. At 7:00 I will e-mail Rebecca.

Sprint #1 Done.