Unsurprisingly enough I find it easier to write when I’m thinking positively than when life is difficult. And yet it’s then I need most to practice talking about hard feelings.
During these past few weeks I’ve been slowly and steadily sinking, plunging myself into a morass of despair.
The good thing is that whenever one of 2son’s professionals have asked me how I’m doing I have told them at length how I’m doing, rather than sticking to a one word lie in reply.
A few weekends ago I went to see my friend (mentioned in Theatre) in a quality amateur production. Naturally we stayed behind to say well done to him afterwards and spent a few minutes listening to him delight in the back stage camaraderie and in house jokes and friendships that had developed. As we made our weary way back to London and for several days after, his words reverberated in my head. His joy, his sense of belonging, of pride and achievement. I wondered why he gets to chase his dream and I gave up on mine. Then I listen to his parents praising him, for his achievements, his hard work and dedication and I stop wondering. Is that what it’s like to have parents who support and encourage you?
I’m still grieving and mourning for the childhood I never had, for the friends not made, the parties not gone to, the fun not had, the mistakes I didn’t make, the learning I didn’t manage, for the silly tales I haven’t got to tell. I’m wishing I’d had the confidence then to stand up for my parents and make a difference while recognising that it’s not unexpected that I didn’t. I want to have been a child, to have had the “normal” childhood problems with friendships, growing up, boyfriends and all the rest of it. I wish I had parents who supported me and gave me strength rather than chipped away at me.
And that’s on top of the dream not followed. I’m stuck in the depression stage of the Kübler-Ross model. I’ve spent most of my life in denial, pretending that it wasn’t that bad really as I wasn’t capable of dealing with the truth. I’ve got angry this year, probably not angry enough and never to the point of saying anything about anything much to my parents. The third stage is bargaining. I was never very good at wishing to be able to go back and do it all again, because I couldn’t see a pivotal point where I made the wrong decision. Even as a teenager I was also terrified of the prospect of having to go through my childhood all over again if that magic time wand could be waved. (I’m almost resisting temptation to call it a timey-wimey wand.)
The stage I haven’t got to yet is acceptance, which starts off “Grief Work” with:
T = To accept the reality of the loss
E = Experience the pain of the loss
A = Adjust to the new environment without the lost object
R = Reinvest in the new reality
I haven’t accepted the reality of my loss. I still yearn for what I didn’t have and feel angry towards people I perceive as having it instead.
And I’m struggling. I’m struggling to keep my head above water while looking after 3 boys as well. As an aside, 1son had a trial shift behind a bar this Saturday which he survived but said it was the hardest day’s work he’s ever done. About time I say, but with pride. I can’t be bothered to cook for them or me. I’m struggling to put in the effort to get 2son up. I’m stopping talking to people. I’m not doing the school run so I don’t have to make polite (or impolite) conversation with anyone and I really can’t be bothered. Except for the few people who really know and share what’s happening I don’t want to talk about it. If it wasn’t for being able to have a laugh with my Saturday friends life would have nothing whatsoever to offer. I’m trying to accept that I simply can’t go out during the week unless I’m back early and that’s the way it has to be for the moment. I’m cutting back on work and I’m cutting back on fun evenings out.
I didn’t have a session last week and have my last session with my current counsellor this week. I’m getting bored of counselling and think I need a break before going back and would happily try something else if there was something else to try. Trying to look at what I have achieved this year is going to be difficult as at the moment any achievement seems irrelevant to the struggle to get through the day. I’m barely doing any exercise and as for HAES or trying to put myself first, well it’s bloody difficult. I’m watching more crap on television and reading for books for pleasure as I haven’t the enthusiasm for anything else. That’s about as far as looking after me goes at the moment. And I’m angry that I feel like shit.