I try hard to make it good for everyone. I really do. It just isn’t enough. I get Anjelica ready for school in the morning and see her off to her bus. I work all day, not just one job, but two, because I have my normal responsibilities plus until recently, I worked by myself on all the details for the top-secret sale project. I couldn’t ask for help, and I imagine the people who work for me and with me on other projects all thought I was a self-centered bitch because I missed a lot of meetings, hid away in my office space, and didn’t talk to anyone. They announced the sale of our group to Philips and I can finally delegate and ask for help. The downside is that now there is more work and more people to manage.

I head out after the school bus arrives and get to my office at 9am; a regular workday, without any overtime has me there until 5:30pm. My commute home, during rush hour is a solid hour, assuming there are no accidents or weather issues. Just about every night, I come home to find that Lou has left trash everywhere. Crumpled paper litters the floor. Empty Diet Coke cans are scattered throughout the living room and kitchen. There’s a dishwasher, but all the dirty dishes he used during the day are on the tables, on the counter, and some at least make it to the sink. He constantly complains about living in this dump apartment. The place is perfectly fine except when he spends the day trashing the place. I get home and clean up, because I can’t cook amid that mess. Then I prepare dinner, we eat, make his meals for the next day, and then I clean up again. I get Anjelica ready for bed, we cuddle in to read. I try to not fall asleep in bed with her. I don’t know why I bother getting out of her bed. Lou’s not glad to see me anyway. He’s mad that I’m late, despite the fact that I am not actually late. The couple of rare occasions I have actually had to work late, I see he’s written it down on his calendar “Jo late 9-10pm.”

If I were to note my calendar, it would say, “Jo exhausted 24-7.” I thought I was doing a good thing starting the day with Anjelica in the morning. But I think Lou’s tolerance for being home alone is worn out by 5pm, so when I come rolling in at 6:30pm, he doesn’t comprehend that I only worked a standard shift. He sees that I left home at 8am and it is 10½ hours later when I return. He doesn’t recognize the commute time. I certainly did not state that he is responsible for my long drive by refusing to live anywhere near my office. After fighting about him claiming I’m late all the time, I said I’ll try going into the office early, but can’t guarantee I can cut out early every day.
After the nightly arguments, we go to bed, have sex without love, watch some television, Lou falls asleep, then I get out of bed to work on my laptop downstairs. And now I will have to get up even earlier to get Anjelica’s clothes, school stuff and breakfast ready, and make sure Lou’s food is packaged and labeled for the day before I hit the road at the crack of dawn.