Thin line

I dumped my brain on here the last few days. I haven’t done that in a while, I try not to. It makes people feel uncomfortable. It makes me feel weird.

I want people to understand that the little things each day shit me just like the next person but I also want none of us to forget that while we bitch about picking the slow queue again in the post office or the idiot driver who pulls left to turn right (what the FUCK is wrong with people) there are so many bigger fish to fry.

Sure, I spend a large portion of my day trying to ignore the worries and stresses I have about Oscar.

Sure I, as a mother, spend an inordinate amount of time worrying about my boys, particularly Felix as he hits high school and enters a decade of becoming a man all while negotiating puberty, school work, who he wants to be, believing in himself, becoming more responsible, comprehending consequences on a far grander scale that what happens if you flog your brother again, having fun.

I didn’t really have fun as a teenager, my life was a pretty intense one with mum working her arse off and dad being absent but expectant all at the same time. When it all went pear shaped one of my aunts told me I had to grow up now, be responsible for mum, to be sensible and to help. Having fun and being a ‘typical teenager’ doesn’t really come into action when someone says that to you when you’re 11. I was the good Christian Girl going to not one but THREE youth fellowships (really covering all bases) and while it truly did get me through a lot of my teenage rage the pay off was guilt. I look back and think much of my adolescence was spent holding my breath. For the next bad thing to happen, for not being good enough, for letting people down.

Where do these emotions come from? I think they largely come from self, I can see it in Felix, but they are then compounded by external factors.

Fast forward a few years.

Fast forward to now.

I just can’t shake this feeling that I have done it all wrong. I mean, who the hell at almost 40 lives with their mother? Who at almost 40 has to ask for a hand-out from their in-laws to pay for car repairs? Who at almost 40 reduces three of their children’s bank accounts to zero to pay for car registration?

 

I’m doing it all wrong.

 

Where did I imagine my life to be at this stage?

Well, not living rent-free with my mother for one.

Not living pay-packet to pay-packet for another.

Not having to accept charity from friends.

 

Someone said to me the other day that accepting charity from others, help from people is about being humble and that having humility is the hardest virtue to learn.

 

In the last two weeks people have:

– looked after and cared for my children unconditionally

– picked up my kids from school and pre-school and looked after them for me without question

– texted me to say they’re having my kid over for a play, no discussion entered into (so so good)

– dropped off food parcels for my family including homemade dessert

– dropped off food parcels for me, to me, in the hospital

– brought me chai lattes at the hospital and hung out to talk shit and make me laugh

– taken my kids to and from footy practice

– dropped off a toiletries and cleaning products care package – anonymously. With one of those double Cadbury Family chocolate blocks in it. That I’ve hidden. And won’t be sharing. Maybe.

– sent us a crate of Gourmet Dinner Service meals that I keep looking at and bursting into spontaneous tears over. Because re-entry into family life after 12 days at hospital is just as hard, in some respects, as 12 days in hospital.

– sent me texts and tweets and Facebook shout-outs telling me you’re thinking of us, willing us a swift trip home

 

I have been humbled by all of it. Blown Away. Driven to tears at people’s love for us, for me. Bolstered by people’s generosity of heart and spirit.

I know we are blessed, that I am blessed to have a world so full of love and friendship. Plenty have pointed out to me they wish they had family and friends to help them out in times of need (subtext I am so lucky) and they need not fear me not realising, appreciating and being infinitely grateful to have so many holding on tight to the safety net under me, ready to catch me as I fall.

I know everyone has wanted to do this because I know when I see a friend struggling I want to do something, anything to ease their burden just a little.  Sometimes it’s words, sometimes something I’ve made, sometimes my hilarious company. (Remember when I was funny?)

 

So why is it sitting so uncomfortably with me?

Somehow all this makes me feel like I’ve failed.

Having to accept help is about having failed, of not being able to manage, of not coping.

I feel I’ve let everyone down.

That I have done it all wrong.

There are so SO many should haves swirling around in my head.

 

We have some family friends who are the most beautiful people in the world, but bad things happen to them all the time – a child off the rails, poor health, financial stress. There is always a feeling of unfairness when they are talked about, that they don’t deserve all this, why does it happen to them?

I do NOT want to be that family people talk about.

And yet I totally know we are.

I DO NOT want to be the sympathy card. The “Poor Kim”.

SO I just want you all to know I won’t let you down.

I will try harder.

You will not have to keep picking me up  or carrying me.

I will not let you down.

I will not fail.

 

Onward.

 

 

Less peak, more trough: when the black dog comes and bites you on the arse

I wish I could pinpoint when the black dog is coming to sit on my lap. To walk beside me every step of my day. To lie on my bed and infiltrate my dreams.

Has it been the boys’ relentless badgering to get a dog and my equally adamant denial of that request that has made him return?

Or the bizarre three kilo weight loss last week which returned literally overnight?

Or the haemorrhage of money that is start of the school year (even though I have managed it! somehow).

Is it my ongoing nagging worry about Mum and her health (she is back to walking with a stick as now her left knee has totally given way).

Perhaps residual anxiety and grief about the Christmas incident as the new reality that it birthed has to be nursed. By me.

It seems ridiculous but the weather, I am sure, is a part of it. That Sydney in February is relentlessly hot AND humid to a point I feel I cannot breath let alone function must play some part to my mental health.

Am I at a point in my fitness and health regime where the mental ghoules are as scary as the physical ones reflected in my bedroom mirrors?

I will not give up. I will not.

*****

Years ago, in the Glamorouse days (which reminds me, I transferred posts over here and MUST edit them so as not to compromise B), I used to whinge and wail about how I hated the weekends. How long and hard they were as a single parent and I am there again. I view the approach of the weekend like an animal views the approach of a human – with a level of fear, trepidation and a nanosecond to decide whether to fight or flee.

Yesterday I got through the cricket/bowling relay match to get home and be struck down with a migraine. And by struck I mean I went to lie down and hours passed in a haze of children screaming, children at my beside requesting foodstuffs or informing me of some slight committed against them by a sibling or that the internet was down. I could not focus my eyes and weird white lines of moving static strobe across them. A first.

Last night saw me have a fitful sleep of a dream in which I battled to kill the devil at the behest of a couple (played by Hugh Jackman and Winona Ryder) who had just bought this exquisite derelict mansion which was inconveniently haunted/occupied by Satan (who, why, I must ask, is always a dragon come alien come dinosaur looking creature?) and while I winced as each stunning architectural feature was destroyed I was pretty happy to be working alongside Hugh and increasingly cranky at Winona who, just as we slayed the Devil, sucked in its final smoke thereby giving it life once more. What an idiot.

Then followed a cavalcade of stars and whether they had been privy to this heinous plan which, naturally, was linked to their sexual conquests. It turns out John Travolta is incredibly adept at dodging bullets of religion and infidelity, considering there was a whole side-story where Winona and Hugh’s babysitter had confided in me her torrid love affair with John, their neighbour. I told her she had to end it and she looked at me incredulously and then pointed to John  and said, ‘would you end it?’. I let that one go to the keeper seeing as my whole aim had been to woo Hugh with my ability to kill the devil which was now severely in jeopardy as to do so would involve killing his wife. Problematic.

Meanwhile there was some sort of 30Rock substory which stars ranging from Beyonce to Pink through Nicole Kidman and Leonardo Di Caprio confessing their sex sins while dancing to some sort of pole dancing shake-ya-bootie soundtrack.

Needless to say today I am wobbly and exhausted.

*****

But what I did not expect was the underlying sense of panic.

The fear of getting through the day ahead.

The vice like grip around my heart, that it is struggling to keep beating as much as my lungs are struggling to fill with air.

The return of being nervy about current events and them upsetting more than they should.

The intensity of just notwantingtodothisanymore

anyofit

thekidsthelife

thebeingthecentreofeverything

thebarometrebywhicheveryoneelsesetstheirmood

thelovertheeducatorthenotesignertheorganiserthecuddlerthegotoer

anyofit

ofjustwantingtowalkoutnevertoreturn

I have been caught off guard by being totally over the school routine already, even though I have everything in hand and it is all ticking along beautifully.

I have been trying to ignore the welling up of the Groundhog Day feeling.

I am growing increasingly resentful for the way everything is even though there is nothing particularly bad or noxious or untenable with  the way everything is.

But the diarrhoea is back.

As is the poor quality sleep (the first sign and has been that way for more than a month).

And the sense of dread about nothing in particular.

And all of it, quite frankly, scares the crap out of me. (literally as the return of the trots clearly indicate)

Onward!

One of those posts

where the glass feels very half full so Joke, best you look away.

So we’re never going to own our own home.
Jasper is on his fourth one hundreth major meltdown of the day.
I’m really hot.
And tired.
The floor needs vacuuming.
I can’t clean up from dinner until someone else anyone I empty the dishwasher.

So go visit my friend Killer.
She’s going on the best big adventure I can possible imagine.