I was getting ready for a hot date last weekend and searching all over my bathroom for my favorite eyeshadow — because nothing makes my eyes pop like a smooth “pixie pink” shadow — and finally found it in my daughter’s room. I’ve asked my teenage girl many times to let me know if she is going to borrow something. That way I can save my energy for things other than tearing my bedroom and bathroom apart looking for my favorite t-shirt, eyeshadow, or all my socks because apparently my closet is a boutique for her and her friends.
Before I found my beloved eye makeup, though, I found an empty bowl of guacamole on her floor (right next to several pairs of my socks), which I’m guessing had been sitting there for a few weeks. Next to it was a bag of barely eaten corn chips that were staler than stories about how Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt really are getting back together.
I took a deep breath. And then another.
I applied my shadow, put it back in my closet, dropped off my kids with their dad, and tried transitioning into date night. But first, caffeine.
As I was waiting in line, an older man walked up to me and told me to smile. I had fantasies of telling him my mind was drowning in a to-do list a mile long because we all know the women of the household run that ship whether they are single or not. I wanted to tell him I didn’t fucking feel like smiling because the mental load I carry around in my head causes my resting bitch face to blossom like a tulip in May. I wanted to tell him he should try being everything for everyone and then get back to me on how much he feels like smiling. Also, he reminded me of an ex-boss who once said to me “Oh look, I see two high-beams coming at me,” as I walked down the hallway to my office. I was in my 20s, he was in his 60s. I should have twisted his nuts, but I had bills to pay so I didn’t.
We’ve been taught to keep the peace and not speak up. That shit sticks with you so, when a man you don’t know comes up to you and suggests you morph into a happy person so he can feel more comfortable, we are rightfully angry, and we let it be known. And it’s about fucking time.
We’ve had enough.
We feel ignored — at work and at home. We repeat ourselves only to be ignored again.
That evening on my date, the man I was with asked to walk me to my car. I didn’t want company and told him I was all set. He asked again, I said no again. He insisted and started following me anyway and I told him for the third time I didn’t want him walking me to my car.
“Can I at least get a hug then?” In his mind it seemed like the reasonable thing to say, I guess. Just UGH.
The next morning, I walked into my daughter’s room and saw the same bowl sitting on the floor with the stale chips by its side. Any minute I was sure to find a cockroach and together they all would have made quite the ensemble — exactly what I envision when I think about my home.
You know what comes next, right?
Yep, I LOST MY FUCKING SHIT.
I lost all of it right there in the middle of the hallway while my kids were half asleep. I didn’t hold back, and I still don’t feel an ounce of guilt about this.
My kids wonder why I’m so angry all the time. To them, losing it once in a while after holding it in for what feels like centuries translates as being angry “all the time.”
I’ll admit I’m tightly wound. All I have to do is watch the news for a half hour, repeat myself to an adult male, get another note from school, or find a rotting, leftover buffet in my daughter’s room and I’m a goner.
I give in to that anger and so does every other mom I know because we talk about it all the damn time. As soon as one of my sisters or mom friends start spewing a story about how the world is going to shit, no one gives a damn about them and their needs, and they are the doers of all things, every mom within a one-mile radius nods their head emphatically (and angrily) in unison.
Before the first sentence is even complete, the entire room shakes and no one dares approach the area because they know we need to dish about how there is no un-douching the world and for fuck’s sake, it sucks.
The fact is, what makes moms of the world crosser than a tailor trying to make a living in a nudist colony is that we speak up but no one listens. And frankly, they don’t give a shit about our feelings until our blood boils over and we let it be known we’ve had enough.
We have a ton on our plates. We worry about all the things (including the fact that we worry about too many things), but we don’t know how to stop worrying. It seems so easy for our family to forget all we do, and there is nothing like painting a pretty little picture about how our minds operate (while going on strike for a spell) to make us feel better and to reset the family dynamic until the next time they all need a take down by their angry mom.
Moms of the world are angry because there’s a lot to be angry about. That anger builds and builds until it eventually erupts.
It’s not a bad thing, necessarily. It gets shit done — so we can all stop with the guilt we have surrounding the fact that we’re angry all the time. This is our life, dammit, and we are dealing with it the best way we know how. Sometimes that means we yell in the middle of the hallway early on Monday morning, and I’m alright with that.