Given how the weekend started — with me LOSING Chris’ signed paycheck Friday night — I wasn’t expecting it to be all that great. If you had talked to me Friday evening, you would have gotten a giant dose of glass-half-empty. Not only was I mad and frustrated with myself (and more than a little confused about how it happened in the first place) but I was also in ulcer-inducing stress overdrive, worried about checks bouncing and how we would make it through the week. Why does it always feel like, just when things are getting on track, you get thrown a curve ball?
If I hadn’t had Nora to get home and feed dinner (and to not freak out) I probably would have sat down and cried right in the middle of Stop & Shop. I definitely would have sworn a lot more than I did. But one of the things about having kids is that you can’t just go and have meltdowns when you feel like having one. You still have to cook food and change diapers and you still have to laugh and take pictures when they pretend their pants are a hat.
Which, it turns out, is a much more productive way to deal with stress, instead of shutting down and making friends with a pint of Ben & Jerry’s like I wanted to do. By the time Chris came home (and wasn’t mad at me), I had realized that I had just enough cash from babysitting and some money leftover from my last consulting gig to deposit in our bank account, which would (just barely) get us through the week until he could get a new paycheck cut.
Its still beyond me how the whole thing happened, and its a glum reminder of how, like many Americans, we really are just barely scraping by, paycheck-to-paycheck. A couple days delay is a big deal when you don’t really have any padding, but as Chris and I discussed Friday night, the only immediate alternative would mean putting Nora in daycare again, which neither of us are willing to do. There’s no way I could spend three hours or less with her five days per week. Hopefully, in the near future, the store will work out and allow me some real income while still being with her. In the meantime, I’m about to start a new freelance gig building a website for a local business, and am going to put together a portfolio so I can do that on a more regular basis…so if you know anyone who needs a website, send them my way!
Besides talking to Chris, what really did wonders for my mood was a fun night out with friends. The Brotherhood is closing this week for a month’s vacation (hurray!), so Nora and I got a bunch of our friends together for a night out. We filled the restuarant up with babies and toddlers, and they were great sports about it — borrowing high chairs from other restaurants and not batting an eye at the pile of food scattered under the table. It was great to get to eat dinner with other adults, since its usually just Nora and me, and to talk “shop.” We got to drool over the amazingly cute Mr. Awho made me realize all over again just how different Nora is from the teeny-tiny little 7lb pixie she was 17 months ago. We ate Chris’ delicious food, including an amuse he sent out:
We had a great time, and after Saturday night I was back to my glass-half-full, everything-will-work-out self.Thank goodness for friends; thank goodness for the Brotherhood…that dinner couldn’t have happened at a more needed time.