We Saeng Mahng -This life is doomed!

This melodramatic Korean expression is particularly appealing to me. I plan to use it for trivial mishaps/life challenges as it will have good comic effect. My kids tell me I routinely speak like a cartoon character (e.g., my favorite expressions include Rats! Ruin! Woe is me! Sigh! Tears! For the love of the Lord! and to my son’s befuddlement, “What in Tarnation?”, which sounds like something Elmer Fudd might have said) so this Korean expression seems apt.

This week has been rife with executive function failures; my errant debit card is once again lost– no doubt melded to the sole of some banker as he treads to work for the first time in ages. It is no coincidence that I have been off of my ADHD drug Vyvanse this past week. I’m, euphemistically speaking, not at my best; a/k/a, the world is not my oyster.

Sunday, I discovered the copay on my ADHD medicine has DOUBLED inexplicably, and the dreggiest of the dreg pharmacy chains, CVS, informed me after my heroic wait on a long, snake-y line that they had run out of my drug (aka, my elixir of life) and would not get it UNTIL THURSDAY. I was politely informed, I was welcome to knock on the doors of other CVS pharmacies to find the drug, evidencing a disheartening ignorance of the nuances and intricacies of my life and those with ADHD. How did this young clerk imagine I had the wherewithall to call a FEW pharmacies on a Sunday evening when I had kids to prepare for camp, socks to match, work emails to return, coordination of teacher gifts, and the requisite hours to fret about not meeting my own creative potential. How many times this past week could you have uttered “We Saeng Mahng?” For me, it’s an infinite number.

Take for example, today. My daughter graduated from Kindergarten. The organized mothers in my midst, three of them my friends, made lovely poster board signs that summarized their kids’ interests and marked a landmark in their lives. I had no poster board. This was okay though. (I always think of myself akin to the protagonist in the stellar novel Little Children when she goes to the playground and all the other mothers have to give her sad, ravenous child a snack. True that in the movie adaption the other mothers mocked her for her ADHD ways but mind you, who got to sleep with Patrick Wilson? Hah hah!).

But then today, my six year old gave her first public speech on stage at her school closing assembly, a speech she conceived and practiced all week in the hallowed auditorium. (Notably, she lucked upon this status by pulling her name out of a hat). We, parents of the speakers, were corralled into a room of the school that is optimistically called the “Social Hall,” a dark, bare space where parents sat and watched a live streaming of their kids speaking in the adjacent auditorium. (I had to single handedly turn off the room’s windmill -sized fan to hear the masked kids’ speeches). Parent after parent stood to record their kids’ speeches, with such ease and sequence. Apparently we were the only two hard of hearing parents in the room and resolved to do something about it. I somehow wrangled my hubby to exit the hall, run up the steps and emerge outdoors— convinced we’d hear our kid better on our phones. But it took us geniuses seconds to realize outdoor sounds like wind would make hearing her impossible When we then attempted to re-enter the same door, a stern guard directed us back to the main entrance, which elicited unwanted jogging from us and a harried descent back to the hall–publicly shamed by our own hubris.

My darling’s turn to speak about the joys of Kindergarten came and I stood with my iphone 6 plus held up towards the screen. And drumroll,…..No storage left. We Saeng Mahng! What other events will I be unable to memorialize due to my inability to clean out my phone? If could hit myself with a mallet like a silent screen actor, I would have in that moment.

After a joyous end-of-the-year party in the park that was hosted by my friend, my daughter and I walked out of the park to go home. Standing at Columbus Circle as we waited for a cab home, we realized her mask was missing. This made me fumble into my amorphous, oversized tote bag that often leaves a wake of valuables and pull out a dirty kid sock. My daughter eyed me with one arched eyebrow as I stretched out the sock, admittedly wondering if I could fashion her a new mask out of it. (I assure you, we did not go that route). On our way home– the two of us wiped out– our merry-eyed cab driver drove for a block and said “Am i taking you to Africa?” Confused, I shot him a weary, uh huh look.

I had forgotten to give him my address.

Happy End of School for those parents out there. xoxo

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