It's not meant to be like this.
Yesterday was bad enough. The builder woke me at dawn with a text about his quote. Then I fell back asleep which didn't bode well for the school run as it was.
But really, managing a building site; fielding calls, texts and drop-ins from tradies, while I'm making egg soldiers and trying to pack a lunchbox for my little girl...
An hour before the school bell, I wasn't showered, neither of us were dressed and Lilli had just burst into tears because she wanted me to stop and help her make a Lego animal she'd seen a picture of and I told her we didn't have time.
I lost it.
I started to cry too.
I keep explaining to her that it's not her fault, that sometimes mummy gets overwhelmed with all the jobs I have to do now that Daddy's not here.
She stops crying and gives me a long-huge hug. She says I need more hugs, now I'm doing everything on my own. To give me energy.
She tells me over and over that "it's all right" and that "I'm the very best mummy in the whole world."
She skips around the kitchen trying to help, hugging me intermittently and telling me it's ok that her egg's not runny. (I was outside in my PJ's giving keys to the builder's apprentice, while her egg was boiling.)
The damned egg rolled out of the egg-cup onto the table in front of her and immediately she asked me: "What does 'shit' mean mummy?"
"It's a naughty word that mummy shouldn't have said" I wiped up egg with one hand and stroked her soft hair with the other. "I'm sorry darling."
Today I"m having a shouting match with Him via text message. Ever done that? You use a lot of capitals, generate lots of typos.
I'm in a plumbing supply showroom trying to choose a shower head and mixer that won't break the bank, trying to get some co-operation from the reluctant sales person while my phone's going off every few seconds and my hands are shaking so hard I can barely hold the phone.
He was supposed to pick Lilli up this morning and take her with her friend to her language class. He was supposed to come early to help her with her homework because it's his native language and I'm not fluent enough to do it.
He didn't turn up. I spoke with him last night and he was clearly out at a bar or restaurant. I sent him a text 10 minutes before we were due to leave.
No response. He didn't turn up ten minutes later either.
Lilli said, "Daddy broke his promise."
As she climbed into the car she added, "Daddy forgot about me."
He called me and said he'd slept in. Lucky him. He said he'd pick the girls up from class. I said that doesn't help that she's way behind with her homework.
He told me the important thing is that he spends time with her.
So that's how the text wars started: in amongst the glare of spotlights reflecting off rows of chrome bathroom fixtures, I typed - you of all people should know that bringing up a child is a little more involved than turning up for some play time every few days.
I let him know what she'd said about broken promises and being forgotten too. I told him he could do his damnedest at breaking my heart but he'd know about it if he broke hers too.
So his text says I broke his heart calling the police.
That's when I started to shake, make loads of typos and fire off a barrage of text messages:
FWI THE NEIGHBORS CALL THE POLICE that is written on the AVO: "response to neighbors call' - I was on the phone to the mental health crisis team trying to speak to a very nice man who'd talked me down from the ledge the last time.. (Graeme was his name)
If you cannot accept you were in a severe manic episode - and you were (a) scary as hell with wild eyes (b) doing something to me that you would KILL anyone else for doing to say, Lilli, then you are truly lost.
After what you went through with your father - & everything it's done to you in the aftermath - you of all people should be aware of how this has all but destroyed me.
That fact you blame and punish me now that you're supposedly "well" goes so far beyond adding insult to injury there're no words for it.
Even after chasing me and wrestling me onto the deck, looking at me with loathing, shouting at me how you didn't love me anymore...even scared (which I never thought I could be of you) I still couldnt bring myself to call the police.
I have put up with all the shit I can in the last 3 years- I deserve to have a happier calmer life and I'll get it one way or another.
But you just go on going out, eating out - enjoying yourself like a single guy - I'll be at home raising our daughter. One day you'll realize I got the best job - harder - but more rewarding.
He sent me another text saying he's sorry if he hurt me emotionally.