You haven’t completely lost control over your life until you realize you don’t even have your nights anymore.
It’s what happens with two small children.
When I read creativity advice that tells me to give my mind an unsolvable problem right before I go to sleep, and then my subconscious will solve it, I think, great. But I can’t do that.
First of all, I don’t go to sleep. I pass out. I pass out either on the bed, while pushing the baby’s swing; or on the couch, while I’m trying to have but a moment of quality time with…
“We don’t have the money to help you furnish your new place,” my grandmother tells me as if I had asked her.
I would never. We don’t have the money is the #1 phrase I remember hearing since I could remember things.
We never lived in a car, and I barely ever went hungry. I know there are people out there, kids out there, who’ve had it worse than me.
But we did spend a few months living in one of the basements of the National Statistical Institute building where my grandma worked. She arranged it. …
“When did he wake up this morning?” the nanny asks, 10-month old Alek crying on her hip.
“What are we having for lunch?” My husband works from home too. ‘Works’ is a strong word for what he’s done since he sold his business, but I support him in taking some time off and figuring things out.
I take a sip of water, choke and start to cough. “You should drink some thyme tea for that cough. Trust me, I used to have bronchitis all the time, and then….” That’s our once-a-week cleaner. She’s the sweetest thing. She cares so much.
“I don’t understand,” my husband tells me as I’m weeping next to him in the car for the fourth time that day.
To be frank, I don’t either. I’m just mad at him. I’m so mad; I can’t calm down.
He has the money to get me a car now, and I really want it. But every time we start discussing it, he asks questions like “Do you really need it?” and “How much do you think we should spend on something you don’t need?”
I act like a brat, I know. We don’t need it, and we could put…
I live in a country where only 15% of the population has taken a coronavirus vaccine.
Coronavirus vaccines are readily available here. They’re free. Getting a shot takes a few minutes since there are no lines anywhere. And we have a variety of them: AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Moderna, the Johnson& Johnson's one and I think one more. I’ve lost track of all the different kinds by now, to be honest.
I got vaccinated a few months ago when the only available vaccine was AstraZeneca. …
“I don’t want to be a housewife, I don’t want to be a housewife, I don’t want to be a housewife. That’s what I was mumbling to myself the other day as I was cleaning up for the 17th time that morning,” my friend, Magi, told me.
Like me, she has two small children less than two years apart.
Unlike me, she doesn’t have a lot of help. Her older daughter refuses to spend an entire day (an entire day?!) in pre-school, so she only goes in the morning. My toddler didn’t have a say on the matter.
The cars wooshed past me in the dark. I doubt the drivers saw me. If they did, they must’ve thought I’m homeless or a hooker.
I wasn’t. I was a 12-year-old girl who lived in the skirts of the city and who wanted to escape. I wanted it so bad that I sometimes crossed the only boulevard separating our building from the vast fields and walked on the side of the highway, wondering where I’d end up and how my life would turn out if I just kept walking.
Of course, I went back home eventually. But at 14, I…
“What happened to me?” I thought as I cleaned up the kitchen for the fourth time that day.
I wish I could tell you it was a special day. Like Christmas or someone’s birthday. I wish I could tell you that was the reason the whole house was a mess. I wish my unloading-the-dishwasher existential crises happened only on special occasions.
But it was an ordinary day. Just another day with my two kids and my husband, who, at this point, I almost blame for not having an affair. …
In 2018, my husband started a business with a friend.
I kept my mouth shut when he announced it. I never really liked that friend, nor did I think the business idea was anything spectacular, but I long thought my husband had the qualities to make it as an entrepreneur. Considering our son was growing in me, it was kind of a “now or never” moment.
So I said, “Great,” even though I knew we’d live on side hustles for a while.
After the first year, they started to take some “yearly salary”, meaning they’d make an alright paycheck once…
Proms are ridiculous in Bulgaria, and mine was too.
Thousands of dollars are spent on dresses and suits and hair and makeup. Most people hire their own professional photographer. Families invite grandparents and uncles and distant cousins to their homes; then they send off their proud graduate to school with an expensive car that’s hired or borrowed from a friend.
In front of the school, former classmates group and regroup for more photos, compare budgets and clothing and the aforementioned cars; and plan the night ahead.
Then they get in the cars again and screaming and counting to 12 (for…