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2:13 p.m. - 2010-01-08
The Unaswerable Question

Why is life so difficult and complicated?

I know I don't consciously try to make it so. At least on my top mind I simply want peace. To not be warring with anyone. To be good to my family and (finally) myself. To be, I don't know, normal. Feed the pets, clean the house, cook food. Write when I have an idea and have something to say. Not necessarily anything profound, just something to make others laugh or think or be moved to do something kind.

It doesn't seem to me that my needs and wants are particularly complex or outré. Yet it feels as though I am stymied at every turn. I don't want great wealth. I don't lust for power. I don't even really want fame (or its darker twin- notoriety). I've never expected this 'normalcy' to be a crazy utopia where cars never break down and the utility bill isn't ever way higher than budgeted for. I don't (lord knows I don't) expect perfect health or complete harmony. With anyone or anything, even this stupid suit of flesh I live in.

So why? Why is something as seemingly basic as an everyday kind of life so goddamn hard to get?

I laugh when I think about my 'simple' wish to be a better mother than my own. In some ways I know I am. I don't beat my children. I don't starve them. I don't hector them and call them ugly names. I don't sacrifice their safety or their bodies to predators who beat or molest them. So I am way, way ahead of my mother's callous brutality that way, but neither did I ever imagine myself having to figure out how to mother two wildly different Aspies. Kids with sensory issues. Communication problems. Social ineptitude. The magnificent ego-centrism of the autistic. Emotionally fragile, devoid of any kind of empathy, harsh, uncommunicative, alternately hyper and almost comatose. Where does my simplistic rosy vision fit in, my desire to be a Kool-Aid Mom? How do I do this with sons who can neither make friends nor participate in even the most rudimentary structures of society? Sons who seem to be built for self-destruction and misery?

I wanted to be a wife, and yes, maybe I had a skewed idea of what that meant. But I swear I never insisted it be perfect. I had this cockamamie idea, an idea borne of a 100 TV shows, a 1,000 books, that to be a wife was to be a partner. You cover some stuff, I'll cover some stuff, the rest we work out together. You be kind and patient with me, and I will be kind and patient with you. We'll have sex. Sometimes it'll rock the house and sometimes it'll just scratch an itch. We'll work out a budget and keep a decent credit score. Together we'll maintain our things- paint the house, get the septic pumped, mow the lawn, change the oil in the cars. I'll listen to your bitching and you listen to mine. We'll find a couple TV shows we both enjoy and compromise on the others. You have some space and some possessions that are solely yours and I will have mine. And even if we don't fully understand the need or attraction, we'll smile benignly and let it be when there's room enough and time enough and money enough to indulge it.

I'll take care of you when you're sick or hungry or sad and you'll back the fuck off and not ask too much when I am sick and hungry and sad. If not taking care of me in kind, at least you won't insist on being indulged and cosseted and give me a rash of shit when I'm not at my best.

Not a lot. Not impossible. Not wildly unrealistic.

Yet so far out of reach. So taunting. So unattainable.


Screw it. Maybe in my next life. ~LA

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