Piles of drawings, unopened statements. Placemats and napkins, not yet dirty enough for the laundry. Colored pencils, in varying states of unsharp. A graveyard of curb-ables, another for Craigslist.
A kitchen floor that rivals the backyard. Shoes of all sizes. Socks and legos, cat food, fur. Dried finger paint on a plate. Bags of intentions: to be donated, to be sorted, to be forgotten. Boxes to take to a new mom, to take camping, to eat and fit over one's head as a "motorcycle helmet." A refrigerator full of projects.
Add to this a toddler who Mommies, incessantly. "Mommy. Mommy. Mommy. Mommy." Questions about movies he has never seen. (No. Darth Tater cannot fly.) Also: a part-time job that feels like overtime, everytime. Several bottomless pits of love and intrigue that make up our social circles. A cooperative preschool, cooperative neighborhood and cooperative career. One car with an empty gas tank, bikes that are too hazardous to ride in the summer (no showers at work). Scratched glasses, through which I squint.
If this were a photograph, it would be me, smiling. Surrendering my face to softness, because this is only now. Temporary, but forever.
For the past year and a half, I've been taking fluoxetine, which is the generic form of Prozac. The lowest dose available, every other day (or once every three days). In essence, to counteract my tendency toward extreme expectations, and to cope with the crashing waves of reality that motherhood brings, daily, to my life. Vitamin P, as I affectionately call it, has seemed to make me a better person. Less ambitious, better-natured. More capable of seeing the forest. More apt to raise a glass, half-full. Still. I've been thinking of letting go. Walking without a safety net, for a while. Just to see. Maybe, somewhere along this absurd ropes-course, I've actually learned to deal.
All these piles--they're just piles. Around which we maneuver, day in and day out. And maneuver we must, regardless of recommended daily intakes and actual dosages of happy.