In between the laughter

Maybe I thought that by being my usual smart-ass self, I could skip right on past the stuff I didn't want to address in my memoir-in-progress. Laughter is a great cloak for a teary-eyed reflection.

My reality, as a whole, isn't a bleak one. Not by any means. But any mother who has ever struggled to make it through the day with her sanity intact, let alone any mother with lofty enough goal to also try and get some time in for herself, knows that funny can only take you so far. Sometimes, things just suck.

My life is complicated. (But I'm guessing if it was simple, I'd be writing non-fiction, so I'll just move on to the next point.) My dad died, unexpectedly at 50. My mom, who had always been taken care of in a traditional Mexican marriage, was left without the knowledge necessary to write a check, log in to an email account, or even a driver's license. Dad had done it all for her. And when we got old enough (I'm the oldest of five girls) we did it for her.

She moved in with us. Then came cross-country. So did my baby sis. Buttercup loves the built-in family unit, but it makes for some tender negotiating when it comes to grocery shopping, cooking, and who's watching the child when so everyone can get some time to themselves. Sometimes, to put this as politely as possible, I get overwhelmed and want to hide in my closet until Mom and Sis get their own place (or places.) It's hard to limit myself on what I'm eating when there are others without limitations bringing in the very shit I'm trying to avoid.

And as much as I think this is essential to telling my story, I'm not sure how to do it without stepping on toes or hurting feelings.

Then there's the background I've purposely left out. You know I'm trying to get in shape. But did you know that a big part of my married family dynamic involves (real or imagined) feelings of judgment from the inlaws? I didn't marry rich. But I did marry skinny and obsessed with the scale. Not good when baby comes with some serious back as part of the genetic make-up.

After talking to my friend Juliette today, it became obvious that in between the laughter, I need to buck up and get real. It's essential to the story and for the reader. But I'll be honest...I really thought I could just get away with funny.

Time to make myself as multi-dimensional on paper as I am in real life.

Shit.