This past year has flown by at a feverish pace and I have had to make a point of stopping to reflect. At times I was very lonely- unable to do more than see friends now and then, often dealing with illness or stress of some kind at home.
I began the year with a new job and adjusting to leaving my daughter in the care of other family members. I also travelled 40-45 minutes each way for appointments investigating my son’s behaviour with the help of a psychologist. I came to the conclusion that I saw definite traits which fit the suspected disorders but since it wasn’t obvious at school, we would do nothing except support him at home, especially with the meltdowns. It was a very difficult season, having very little time to see people during any part of the week, averaging 5-6 hours of broken sleep a night (my daughter seldom sleeps through) and only having check-ins from a handful of people at best.
I began to forget what I did for fun and the house fell into total disorganisation. I was hard on myself and constantly felt overwhelmed with the clutter, wishing I could have help to get on top of the mess. I would tell myself there would be time after all the jobs were done (like making lunches and hanging clothes) to relax and do something fun but I only had energy to watch television if anything and I often finished the jobs so late that I tumbled into bed without time to wind down or do anything creative.
It is possible to get to the point where life becomes a repetitive, melancholy cycle, almost purposeless beyond “getting through the day”. I couldn’t laugh easily and I missed out on months of getting to know my kids because I couldn’t cope with the exhaustion.
In the midst of all this, the longing for connection with people grew but I didn’t have the energy to reach out or sow into relationships much. My family ties grew tense- I went inside myself because no one seemed to understand.
I knew I had to do something different from what I was doing, since it wasn’t working. I had to find myself again and work out what I should be focussing on.
Writing has given me fresh eyes to see what the fog was all about. I was in a season of grief and burn out. Loss of friendship groups, health struggles, family expectations I couldn’t meet, regret for wasted years, the insane lack of time to self, the relationship with my son robbing me of the joy of parenting and the high stress in the household. I had thought it best to shut down, struggling to believe I had anything worthwhile to share anymore. I didn’t think anyone would want to know me .
Somewhere in the midst of all of this, I found a way to rise again, taking baby steps towards better coping. I can’t recall if I shared the poem ” You” on my old blog, but it shows the hope I had and how when I come to the end of myself, my strength really begins. I will make this one of my next posts.
On the banks of the Yarra, Melbourne