As a kid, adulthood is one of those things we all look forward to until it’s here. It seems so magical: you can buy whatever you want, you don’t have to listen to your parents, and you don’t have a bedtime. I guess it has its perks. But at the moment, I’m finding it to have many more drawbacks. We’re all stuck in a pandemic that seems to have no intention of ever disappearing. Of course some of us are bound to get a little depressed.
It might be improper, but I feel envy toward those who are working from home, or going into a job they know will be there every day. It’s bound to get frustrating when no one will hire you because of the pandemic, or when all you do is cook and clean, or when your debts keep piling up and piling up because you can’t afford to pay them back. I can’t do everything at once. I clean the house, and I take my son to school, and I cook the family dinner every evening. One thing I can count on is things never changing. Too much change stresses me out. Doing the same thing every single day stresses me out, too.
If I could do anything, I’d go back to school. I want to be a mortician. Something about death and humanity is fascinating to me. I found a course online and everything. Naturally, there’s no way I’d be able to afford it. I miss having a steady job and a weekly income. These days, I rely on child tax and limited support from the government. Once my bills and rent are paid and groceries are bought, I have almost nothing left. I won’t tell my son about the struggles. It’s hard not to feel guilty about all the things I can’t provide for him: no vacations, no fancy birthday parties, no expensive toys or gifts. I know he appreciates what he has. At the same time, he deserves more. It makes me sad to know I can’t give him that.
Next month is my road test. Having my license and a vehicle will ease a bit of stress; I’m frustrated by having to ask for rides or use public transit all the time. But there’s more stress that comes along with your own vehicle. Car insurance, gas money, it adds up, and who knows when someone will give me a break and let me work for them. Your whole adult life, all you do is work shitty jobs to pay for things you need to survive, and now there’s a pandemic, so fuck the economy, right? I don’t want any more shitty jobs. I want a career I enjoy at a place with people I like. I know how to get there, but it seems so far off and so overwhelming. I guess that’s the price you pay when you have big ambitions. I thought that getting published would bring in more income, but it’s hardly helpful, and no one gives a single shit anyway. I’m tired of being poor, but what can I do about it, really?
Recently, my father was diagnosed with lymphoma. We haven’t seen him a while – he’s been in and out of hospital, and can’t really have visitors anyway. He seems alright when I talk to him. His hair started to fall out, so my mother shaved his head. Lymphoma runs in my family. When I’m older, I might get it too. It’s a bit ironic, really. I began my latest novel, about a boy with leukemia, only a few weeks before he was diagnosed. It’s funny how that happens.
Our bedroom needs to be painted. Flooring still needs to be installed. The house needs to be swept and mopped, again. Around here, there’s always something that needs to be done, and I’m tired of having to do it. I can do two loads of laundry and it needs to be done again a week later. I can wash all the dishes and have a bunch more to do the next day. I know, it’s all part of being a parent and an adult. I just wish it weren’t. My motivation these days is really lacking, so I get nothing done, and then I feel bad for skiving off my responsibilities. I know I have all these things I need to get done – debts to pay off, things to put away, jobs to apply for, and it’s like, it feels like all I’ll ever do for the rest of my life. And that sounds like a pretty shitty life, just working until you die. I don’t know. I don’t want to sound dreary. I’ve been dealing with depression just like anyone else.
It’s almost my son’s birthday. He’s turning five, and I booked him a party at a bowling alley. It’s the first party he’s had that wasn’t just at somebody’s house, and I need to save up to pay for it. Because it’s too expensive to get a professional cake made, I’m attempting to make my own. He recently said he wants to live at his grandma’s house instead of mine, because she has better games, and it’s more fun. I know he didn’t mean it like that, but it still upset me. I’ll probably never be able to give him what his friends have. I wish I could. I’m doing my best, but most of the time I feel like my best isn’t good enough.
The government keeps telling me to get a job, as if I haven’t been trying for the past year and a half. We can’t keep giving you income support, they say, like I’m being helpless on purpose. I don’t know what I’m supposed to do. Apply for a million more positions and hope I get lucky? Yeah, I guess so.