Life is so weird. One minute you’re running on the treadmill watching an old episode of Frasier, and the next you realize your sleeping daughter is due at piano lessons in exactly fifteen minutes. Your husband throws clothes on the sleepy headed kid, you set out an assortment of granola bars and grab a bizarre mixture of dinner leftovers to send in her lunch bag. Sans fork, because, of course.
On arriving at piano lessons, you in truly sweaty sweats, she tells you she needs $25 for the book fair at school in 30 minutes. You check your email before taking off for the ATM, because who carries that kind of cash around these days, and you discover an email from a mother asking if your piano-playing genius knows why her daughter has a big chunk of hair missing from the top of her head.
Sigh. More Frasier, less crazy please.
With money in hand, you pick up your girl and interrogate her on the way to school. Naturally, she knows nothing of Hair-gate, which you already knew, but had to ask. You drop off your child and go home, checking your email once again. Lots of stuff and nonsense, then an email from a friend launching something new. An email from another friend (whose life you envy beyond all reason) encouraging you to grab this crazy bull ride of a life by the horns and just do what you’re made to do. And a few more from friends with books prepared to launch. You want to scream and cry and shout epitaphs at the sky because your life is a series of misadventures and you just sent off a 1000 word article for absolutely no pay. You miss your old ex-pat life. You want Europe and you feel trapped in this never-ending Narnian winter in the suburbs of New Jersey. You hate everything and everyone. Where’s that missing lunch fork when you need it? You want to stab yourself in the eye.
You recognize you might be having what most parents call a temper tantrum. Then you see the email from a friend whose father is dying. Your anger deflates, and without all the wind of your perceived injustices, you feel small. Your friend will lose a parent soon. Your sister will have her baby, and your writer friends will birth books. Other friends will live out their dreams right before your teary, red-rimmed eyes. And you, you will realize your heart was small all along.