(Written December 2018)
I woke up to an average day, not feeling my best, but ok. I looked around my bedroom and could see yesterday had not been great either. A Clear room might not equal clear mind but it helps. As one daughter headed out of the door, and the other was in bed unwell. I began to worry. You see when a daughter is unwell my thoughts range from them skiving and pretending, to them actually dying and every thought in between.
Suddenly my head felt a little fuller and when I went into the living room I could see the baskets of ironing. They’ve been there 2 days, but today it felt like it was causing my head to explode.
Then the postman knocked and delivers parcels, I don’t want to open them. I’m scared to open them. I may have forget something, I might need to do something. My head is cloudy.
The door knocks again, I’d forgotten I was having my hair done. I always have her come to my house, but today I feel anxious with every foil placed in my hair. With every brush of my hair I feel tension, I wonder if it will look nice, have I left enough time before Christmas, am I spending too much.
Then I sit on my sofa. I watch the video that my sister & I filmed in memory of my mum. It will be launched at the weekend. I feel fake, like a different voice, I feel overweight and can’t look. Then I can’t listen to my own voice.
I cry. I cry and cry, because these aren’t the things I’m really worried about. Somehow each of these minor or trivial concerns all lead to the same final thought. The thought that others would be better off if I weren’t here. Whether that’s because I’m a bad parent, unable to cope with daily tasks, I feel insecure of how I look and sound, put too much pressure on friends to like me, want to please someone so much I make it uncomfortable.
As the rain beats down on the window I sit on my sofa with tears flowing again. I feel lost and alone and like no-one could possibly understand. How can I ring someone and tell them how low I feel over a messy room or the rain? But my head is now full and I can’t function when it’s full. I list the names of those I may have upset, annoyed or worried in today’s episode of anxiety. I can’t finish the list, it’s too long. Why do they put up with me?
Suddenly the day has passed and I’ve done nothing, nothing but worry. Other days I can condense this into minutes, but today, days like today when I have so much to do, I spend it all worrying.
Eventually something clicks, there’s no formula for what, and I prioritise, I rationalise, I know I can do this. A few little bits, and I’m coping again.
As it peaks and troughs the rain is like my head, heavy and hard hitting with the thoughts that worry me and build my concern, even that flash of lightening, that realisation of forgetting something. And then it slows and stems and you can smell the fresh air, it comforts you as you see the rainbow… anxiety will always be there, just some days more than others
Tomorrow is a new day