All I could think about on Saturday morning was getting to my laptop and writing a blog post. It has been a long time since I've needed to write like that. Usually I'm commemorating an event, filling a gap, or writing down thoughts that have been ruminating for a while. Saturday it was a torrent- I had to get the words out or else I was going to burst and cry and tuck myself in bed at 3:00 in the afternoon (actually, I still did the latter two). And more than the writing- I needed the comments. Shamelessly needed them, looked forward to them, read them repeatedly. I needed the community, the slightly cheesy but still real internet hugs, the knowledge that if we all lived in the same town like the olden days, there would be sympathy and empathy and margaritas and then a lot of laughing about something irrelevant and inappropriate. Reeling is the best I can describe it and it doesn't come close.
I'd hoped to be feeling a bit better by today. More grounded, less like I want to cry. I don't. If anything, I'm worse. I was at work thinking "oh my god what if I have to leave this job in two months and what are we going to do." And I came home to a grim looking JP who'd spent half the day working and half the day job hunting and said, "I think maybe this is going to be harder than I thought yesterday. I can't believe I won't have a job a week from today." I hugged him. What else can I do? I had little to no patience for my darling children and just wanted to hunker down in my bed. I hate feeling like this. I'm a bright-side person by nature. It's just so soon to go back to a time that still feels so raw. I want to spend a few hours wallowing in the suckiness of watching your spouse go through it all again, of being the sole-income-earner again and the stresses that come with that, but I can't really, because obviously JP is the more injured party and I feel emotionally selfish and I don't want him to see me wallowing in my morass of sadness and fear and touch of panic over something he feels is his fault. Because it absolutely isn't his fault, and I can't give in and instead spend a lot of time staring into space and blanking out over what's happening around me. Works great on conference calls.
As I said on Saturday, I'm not handling this well.
In other news, while I was gone and JP was on his own with the kids and spinning from the news he'd be unemployed in 13 days, a giant tree limb cracked off our front oak tree in the middle of the night and landed on the gate, effectively trapping the car at the top of the driveway. He called a team of emergency arborists who came out at 7 a.m. the next morning to use ropes and pulleys and giant chain saws to deal with it. A negotiated $350 later and he was left with a giant trunk in the front yard that he'd volunteered to chop up himself to save the disposal fee. It was that huge branch (and I mean huge- the main trunk was at least 12" in diameter and I now realize we are so lucky it hit the gate and driveway and not the roof) I wanted to ask about when I walked in the door Friday night, just before learning the bigger news. On Saturday JP rented a chain saw for 4 hours and spent that entire time sawing up branches for firewood. I brought him out some water somewhere in the middle and casually mentioned that I would probably not have handled the "tree falls on house/gate" situation well had I been alone with the kids (see, for example, the dinosaur roach incident), particularly if I'd been dealing with the kind of news he'd been processing on his own, and he just smiled and said, "well, I've always wanted to use a chain saw." He is such a solidly, amazingly wonderful guy (and husband/friend/father/etc.) that I feel guilty for my not-yet-even-close to thinking of the silver lining state.
I just, I need a minute. Several minutes. I don't do well with uncertainty. I'm all for change- I love change. The adventure, the research, the to-do lists and contingency plans. I am all over that. But this is change wrapped in a dripping turd of uncertainty and I don't know the next step to prepare for, I just know I need to brace myself and curb my aimless stares because I can't honestly answer JP's "what are you thinking?" inquiries without making him feel depressed or guilty, which are of course the last things I need to make him feel, maybe because I am feeling them, and I know so many people have been through this and so many had/have it even worse (and I'm realizing nearly all of you will end up reading this on 9/11 and fortheloveofgod you'd think I could have a little perspective), but in this late-night moment of calculating how many months it will take before we can't pay our mortgage, I can't seem to get a grip on myself.
I'm not handling this well.