28. Afraid to venture, afraid to see

“Hon, are you taking the kid to school, or am I?”  my husband asks me.

It should be my job.  To take the kid to school.  I know this, I really do.  My husband works nights, and needs to sleep during the day.  If he were to just drop the kid off and come home, he would still get enough rest, but we both know the drill.  If I don’t get out of bed now, I won’t be getting out of bed today.

I lift myself up from the pillow.  Just this small movement of air and I can smell myself.  I don’t remember when I last took a shower.

“I’ll do it.”  And I start to cry.  My husband looks frustrated, or maybe he doesn’t, that could be in my head too.  We both know that he’ll be taking the kid to school today.

“You rest up.  You’ll feel better in a few hours.”

I really can’t tell if he really believes it or not.  I don’t, but I nod my head just as I am closing my eyes to sleep again.  Maybe hour 19 of this sleep period will be the one that finally kicks me out of this.

And the thing is, I really just can’t explain it.

I know deep down his teachers don’t think about me enough to develop a hatred, but I feel like they do.  I know that logically they aren’t pitying my child and saying, “There goes the kid with the crazy mom.”

I know these things, but I don’t feel them.  What I feel is that they are a moment away from calling Child Protective Services.  And I feel they will if they see me.  I am sure that my mental pain is more visible than any physical wound could ever be.

I am wearing the Scarlet C.  They will see it.  And they won’t just shun me for it, they will shun my child.

I hear the door close behind my husband and kid.  Loathing sinks in, but it is better than any sleep aid, and I fall into slumber.

I honestly don’t know if I would leave the house if it were on fire, lest anyone see me this way.


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