My eyes hurt. My body is drained and limp. My brain is mush. I am spent — physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I am running on fumes. I could easily, effortlessly, pass out on the train seat and wake up in Danbury in 45 minutes.
But I won’t.
I will go on. I will shepherd the crazy animals up the stairs, into the bath, and make sure they brush their teeth, take their vitamins, put on their PJ’s, read them stories and sing them songs.
I will just be going through the motions. I will ask them how their day was but I will find it hard to focus on their answers. I will struggle to stay awake. My vision will be blur as I read. I will slur my speech.
Then I will drag myself into my glorious oversized Lulu Lemon sweatpants and go downstairs. I’ll eat a piece of pizza. I might open a bottle of red wine or sip on some scotch. We’ll start a movie but I’ll certainly fall asleep if we do, so we won’t.
I’ll just sort of sit there, staring blankly around the room, bored and exhausted but not wanting to waste a single precious moment of free time. I might bait my friends about politics on Facebook.
Or, I might rally and watch a movie. Maybe Hunger Games. I’ll pay for it tomorrow, or tonight when Sam wakes up at 3:30 and wants some impossible incommunicable thing to be done for him. I will sing him old songs and lullabies, I will try not to scratch his soft little head with my furry beard. And I will curse myself for not sleeping when the baby sleeps.
I will try to remember that soldiers often go weeks without sleep. I will try to convince myself that my mother’s voice ringing in my ears is just a mirage – she can’t really get inside my head and tell me how important it is that I get my sleep. It’s just a bizarre figment of consciousness.
I will prevail. I am not a broken man. Just bashed and bruised and battered, beaten down. Not broken. Never broken.