By Daydreaming Mum
Today I’m feeling really good. I’m happy , content, relaxed. I’m in a good mood. I feel this way the most of the time.
Last week though I had a rotten couple of days. Day one was anxiety ridden. I woke to an anxiety attack – Good Morning indeed! Just for good measure that day was also a school GCSE meeting for the eldest. My anxiety tells me horrid lies so that made the meeting difficult. It told me that everyone else at that meeting was in couples. That I was the youngest parent in that room, that everyone was thinking ‘ooo look at her , she must’ve started young and she’s still not managed to find a husband’ Of course once the anxiety has gone I can see how daft all that thinking is. Of course there were other parents there on their own and what everyone else was probably thinking was ‘Oh bloody hell this GCSE year is going to be a nightmare’
The following day anxiety was replaced with the most horrid low mood-double whammy!!I felt it straight away in the morning. My instinct was to do my hair, make an effort with makeup and a decent outfit. Make everything look ok on the outside so that no one knows what’s going on underneath. My head said push through it, power on. My heart told me to get the kids ready for school, get them out of the door and go back to bed.
That’s exactly what I did.
I feel guilty admitting that. That’s the problem isn’t it?
If I’d have had a migraine I wouldn’t have felt bad for a lie down in a dark room. If I’d sprained my ankle I wouldn’t insist upon running a marathon. If I’d had a sore throat I’d not have felt like a disgraceful human being for sucking on a strepsil. I’d have done what was necessary to feel better so I could get on . Retreating to bed because I felt low though? Was that allowed?
Even though I knew for sure that going to bed, pulling the duvet over my head and napping would make me feel better I felt embarrassed. Seems so daft to feel as though I needed permission to make myself feel better.
I gave myself permission that day. I didn’t fight feeling crap. I wallowed a bit. I had a cry. I looked at Twitter , I lamented the fact that I really needed some physical contact and I had no one to provide it ( because I was never ever going to find anyone who wanted to be with me and I’d probably be on my own for ever and ever…when I self pity I self pity HARD)
You know what a couple hours later I felt better. I got showered and dressed. I tidied up, I got dinner ready. Once the kids got in from school then I felt much, much better. The chaos, the bickering, the noise, the mess absolutely soothed me. I could relax. Normal was back in the shape of 4 grumbly, hungry children. I’d had my time out and was all the better for it. It’s a rarity I feel that down but I did what it took to feel better. I’m very lucky that my periods of anxiety and low mood are short lived these days.
Maybe though if you’re just in a bad mood or you’ve got so much on you’re giving yourself a headache thinking about it. Perhaps if you’re shattered or feeling a bit off colour surely it’s ok to make yourself feel better if that’s at all possible. Let’s face it there are enough times when it’s not. Have 10 mins with a trashy mag and a cuppa, have a power nap, eat the chocolate. Give yourself permission to feel better
The washing up will wait for you, the work you brought home with you will hang on whilst you have a 10 min phone conversation with the person who cheers you up to talk to. The laundry won’t run away (unfortunately) if it’s left half an hour. The kids won’t be messed up for life if they have a chippy tea for one night.
Parenting doesn’t have to be wall to wall martyrdom does it? We should take care of ourselves as well as we do everyone else, or at least almost as well. So if that means taking a bit of time from our busy days to browse twitter and have a wispa? That’s ok!!
Honestly, it really is!!
Reproduced with permission, originally published here