Today the walls are closing in. Seven months (plus) of sleep deprivation and four weeks (and counting) of R being off school are taking their toll. Outside: rain. Inside: my own personal purgatory – the bottomless pit of laundry; the endless loop of putting toys away only to find them all out again five minutes later; the panic of what to cook everyone for tea tonight; the dog’s forlorn stare, taunting me, “Please walk me mummy. Please.”; the unfinished jobs everywhere, everywhere; the constant guilt of not ever being able to pay either of the girls enough of the attention that they need and on and on and on. And the worst thing – the self pity. Trying to think of the last thing I did for myself, just for me, and coming up blank. Asking myself when was the last time I was truly on my own? Realising it’s been over a year because being alone when you’re pregnant doesn’t count. Aching for the luxury of being able to put my needs before everyone else’s for a change. The immediate guilt that follows all this wallowing – that I shouldn’t feel like this because I am so blessed to have everything I have – but feeling it anyway and hating myself for it. Then, consequently, the absolute worst thing; the claustrophobia. The feeling that my chest is in a vice and the knowledge that the next person who touches me or asks me for something is going to be on the receiving end of all of my pent up rage and frustration and that they don’t deserve it (probably my OH. My poor, long suffering OH). The sheer terror of being trapped and unable to get out and the constant internal battle fighting the overwhelming urge to GET OUT OF THE HOUSE and get in the car and drive and drive and drive.
I don’t write this for pity or for attention. I write this as this is all I have at the moment that fulfils all of the criteria that’s missing for me at this time. This is something just for me. This is my time to be on my own. This is me putting my needs first. I’m doing this because I need to. And don’t you dare judge me.
I know I’m not alone in any of this. I know that this is what being a parent means and I accept this. I know that I am so very lucky to have a caring, supportive partner, a close immediate and extended family and a network of loving friends. I know some people have to go through all of these struggles alone and my heart goes out to them. I know that there are people in this world whose lives are crisis and chaos and that I am not one of those people. I know that tomorrow I will be fine. But today, today is Gloomy Sunday.