To Do List

July 25, 2013

As I arrive home from a long, much needed vacation, I am greeted by a 10 inch stack of mail to sort. I haven't unpacked yet, but already I know my to do list is growing. The refrigerator is empty, pantry bare. There are messages on voice mail to retrieve and answer, and there is a day's worth of laundry to do.  Welcome home.

So why is it that all I can do right now is stare blankly at the television, muted? Why is it that my full suitcase remains unopened on the bed while I nibble mindlessly at a cherry poptart?

My emotions are vacant. I am numb.

Then it dawns on me. I don't want to feel real life again yet.

Because for me, real life means that my 21 year old is in prison. Real life means that we don't know yet what the length of his sentence is. Real life means more hounding the mental health care facilities for my son's records to help his attorney make a mental health case with the prosecuting attorney. Real life means worrying about something that can't be controlled. Real life is hell.

So I will finish my poptart before I check my email. I will solve this Law & Order episode before I answer my voice mail. I will sit for a while and dream about some other mother coming home from vacation to greet her 21 year old son at the door. Home from college. Juggling a job and a steady girlfriend. This mother has problems of course, but none of them involve the anxiety that comes with the fact that your baby is sitting behind bars waiting to start his life.

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