It was during the second re-start of Asher’s time out timer, during what is now becoming a daily ritual of tantrum throwing, when I looked on social media and learned that the Governor of Louisiana expects the “stay at home” order to last THROUGH THE END OF MAY.
It was during the fifth re-start of Asher’s time out timer (yes, you read that right. It’s a thing and it sucks) that I was like, wait.
It was then that I started to panic.
The realization sank in: I get at least six. more. weeks. of ritualistic tantrums and emotional volatility from my middle child, and heaven only knows what my oldest has up his sleeve because he always finds new ways to shock years off my lifespan. There is just really no telling what kinds of awe-inspiring things I have to look forward to, but I feel fairly certain that all of them will involve damage to my home or my psyche, and not necessarily in that order.
Please note that if you’re thinking to yourself, Harmony, all that negative thinking will only produce a negative outcome, you can go right on ahead and fuck yourself. Take that annoyingly positive thinking of yours and get the hell away with all of that bullshit because I am not fucking negative. I’m fucking human and I’ve sucked it up long enough, do you hear me? I have been holed up in my house since March 13 with these children and I am doooooooone. ALL OF US ARE DONE!
We have crafted and put together puzzles and watched all the movies. We went on bike rides until one day everyone including me threw a fit a street away from our house and all the people came out onto their driveways to look at the spectacle that was the Hobbs family.
Today we tie-dyed t-shirts — fun, right? WRONG.
Tie-dyeing was what prompted Asher’s hour-long temper tantrum. Why? Who the fuck knows! Certainly not me! All of my children are regressing. I am regressing. I want to curl into a ball on the floor and eat freshly baked cookies and blast gutter rap and growl every time anyone comes near me like a feral grizzly bear basking in her own filth.
I am a woman in the prime of her life who cannot leave her house. I have rachet hair and raggedy nails and feet that badly need professional help, but it’s not my personal appearance that is the problem, oh no.
It is the fact that I have no escape from my family.
HELP ME ESCAPE MY FAMILY.
Look, I like to believe that I’m a persistent, stubborn, hardy person who can handle a whole lot of shit, but this **gesturing vaguely around** situation is about to send me over the edge.
I remember when I was a kid, seeing older folks doing peculiar things. I’d ask my mom, “Why does Grandma crumble up Saltine crackers and mix them with ketchup?” Or, “Why does so-and-so’s grandmother hoard dinner rolls in her purse and steal Sweet N’ Low packets from the Piccadilly?”
“Oh … she lived through the Great Depression,” was usually the answer, although I didn’t fully understand what that meant until I was much older. The Great Depression made able-bodied men leap from the tops of buildings, or shoot themselves in the face. Just the title of that dark period of American history lets us know that it freaking sucked.
Kind of like 2020.
This event, and whatever else is to come, is what will shape us. In another 40 years, when all of this is behind us, I’ll be the type of geriatric who refuses to remain confined in her room or her home, no matter the size or level of comfort. I won’t give a rat’s ass about any so-called lack of transportation, just get me OUT OF HERE, SHIRLEY, and into A PUBLIC PLACE WHERE I CAN BE AROUND STRANGERS. And be fast about it. I’m not getting any younger.
I love my children dearly, but we all like each other so much more when we get a small break every once in awhile. Just a teeny tiny bit of time away. Just one little trip to one place. Which is why, in the year 2060, old people will FUCKING REFUSE to go home.
They — I mean, us — will be unfreakingstoppable. Don’t believe me? That’s sweet. We will be out all hours of the night dancing on top of tables, probably topless. The police will have to pick us up and drive us home to our families, who will breathe sighs of relief to see us home safe and sound. And they will say “Thank you, officer, for bringing her home safely from shopping again,” before exchanging a conspiriorital look of you know how all of these folks who lived through 2020 are. They’re about half a bubble off plumb, if you know what I mean.