Tuesday, January 30, 2007

All Out Of Gumballs

Nothing for it but to enjoy the pretty tulips I bought today when I walked into town to pick up our car.



"All out of gumballs" is an expression I invented four years ago, at a time when I was very sick. I had no idea a person could be as sick as I was back then and still have to function somewhat normally for part of each day. My kids were younger then. My daughter was six and my son was 10. During the day when they were at school, I walked and slept and tried to breathe my way through a long day of terrifying flashbacks, anxiety attacks, pain and exhaustion. When my kids came home from school, I tried to look like mom for a few hours until they went to bed.

How could they understand that their former super-mom just wasn't her old perky self? I used the metaphor of a gumball machine. I told them that my energy and ability to do things was like a gumball machine filled with a certain amount of gumballs (sometimes not too many rattling around in there), and when they were gone, I had to rest and wait for the machine to get some more. This made sense to them, so we planned our time around how many gumballs I had that day. Enough to play a game of Go Fish. Enough to read a story. Enough to lie down beside them on my bed and listen to them chat about their day.

I have more gumballs these days. A lot more. But some days, they just run right out.

Colin's week and a half off from school is wearing on me. He has been his needy, bored, emotional (and hormonal) self this week. I am hormonal too. Bad timing. Doug's off at Scotch night (don't ask); I had to go to an interview at Hayley's school and pick up the car from servicing. Two blow ups with the boy. That's it. I'm out of gas.

I finished this jacket today, and like me, it is a limp, wadded up lump. I haven't got the jam to wash it and block it tonight, but I'm sure it will look a lot better in the morning.

9 comments:

Jean said...

That's a perfect analogy, Jayne. I've felt like that often over the last year and had a hard time explaining to the boys that I was just spent.
Just before Christmas break I really had no gumballs left. The only thing that kept me going was knowing that two-week break was on the horizon and then I just had to make it through the holidays to February. Here's hoping you have a lifetime supply of endless gumballs.

Lisa said...

Hope you feel better soon Jayne!

Anonymous said...

Hope you get some "me" time soon--maybe that will help you recharge. In the meantime, hang in there. I'm sending good thoughts your way. kelly

Grace Yaskovic said...

I so understand, I have had periods in my life like that too, especially when my dad died and my mom was dying! I am going through it now and I think it is menopause and hormonally induced. Feel better my friend, and thanks for the yarn!!!

junior_goddess said...

Someone OUGHT to be throwing nickels into the gumball machine...or you won't be able to get more.

Lisa W. said...

this too shall pass is my motto.....next week you'll be able to recharge those batteries.....teens can be so draining under even the best of circumstances. virtual hug.

CatBookMom said...

And yet you still manage to hang in there. I understand the feelings of being overwhelmed and the physical effects that result. I hope today's arrival of the LH yarn will add a couple of gumballs to the jar.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jayne,I wish you had been with me yesterday at the Orpheum to listen to Margaret Trudeau talking with honesty about her "ups and downs",medication and the stigma connected to depression.You would have applauded her.
Ann in Coquitlam

Trish - My Merino Mantra said...

I've been out of gumballs, too, recently, but you won't be gumball-less for long. There is nothing like yarn, tulips, and whatever was in that cup in your picture!