I’m not much of a crier.
Life doesn’t really make me cry, the only times I’ve ever really been known to cry is whilst watching a sad film (actually hyperventilated during The Notebook – snotfest alert) or a programme on TV. Although, I’d concede I can be quite emotional, I still wouldn’t call myself a crier per say.
However, this week I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve wanted to cry and I’ve been trying to work out why.
Before you worry (or perhaps don’t) that something awful has happened. It hasn’t. I’ve received no bad news or fallen out with anyone (this week). I’ve not even watched a sad film or documentary (it’s been all about Corrie and Britain’s Got Talent for me over the last few days). But, I’ve had this irrepressible feeling where if I thought about it long enough I really could have a good old fashioned tear up.
I’ve spent the last couple of days trying to work out why this is. Why am I on the periphery of ruining a pair of false eyelashes?
One word my friends: stress.
Anxiety is normally the main issue with my mental health, as I’ve documented many times previously. And yes, while I’ve certainly experienced moments of anxiety this week, the overwhelming feeling has been the S word.
As quick as Mo Farah thoughts, emotionally and physically drained at all times and wondering which task I tackle first are just some of the symptoms of stress I’ve been experiencing. Whilst trying to ensure a smile is plastered on my face at all times.
I came up with a diagnosis for how I’m feeling earlier this week. I’ve called it Swan Syndrome.
Why, I hear you cry?
Well, to put it simply, what is it swans do?
They look beautiful and serene whilst cruising around the water but underneath they’re paddling like mad to stay afloat.
Not too dissimilar from how I feel.
Work, family life and my health has all thrown certain challenges my way this week and every time someone asks me how I am, the first thing that spills out of my mouth is “I’m fine thanks, how are you?” when actually all I really want to say is “I’m feeling really quite shit if truth be told”. However, for reasons unknown to me, I just can’t bring myself to do it.
Is it because I’m worried people will see it as a weakness? I bloody well hope not, because as I’ve articulated many times previous, mental health/illness is NOT a weakness. I refuse to feel ashamed for saying there are times I struggle.
Or perhaps it’s because I’m kidding myself that everything is OK? Likely. Very, very likely.
I feel like I’m talking in riddles with this post and I really don’t want to confuse any readers so let me break it down a little more.
I’m tired. Like bone crushingly exhausted. So much so I took a pregnancy test this week, despite the fact I’m on the coil. I felt so tired, hungry (don’t get me started on that one) and unlike myself that I had to wee on the stick of doom/joy (delete as appropriate) just to rule it out.
It was negative of course. But I was so unsure as to why I’m feeling ‘off’ at the moment that alarm bells started ringing in my mind.
Sleep is a rare entity at present, mainly due to my 2.5 year old son who doesn’t seem to be as much of a fan of it as his Mother. Damn it, I’d hoped to pass that hobby of mine on to him.
Work is slightly overwhelming me at present and I’m finding myself struggling to keep on top of my never ending list of tasks, especially as I’m only part-time and desperately hoping I’ll still be in a job come September.
My health is worrying me a little. I am currently awaiting blood test results for a condition I have been tested for called Von Willebrands syndrome. I’ve been back and forth to the hospital so much over the last couple of years that I’m feeling a little fed up. I’m sick of looking at my legs and realising I could easily do a dot-to-dot picture on them due to the sheer amount of unexplained bruises I have covering my skin.
So, take all the above into consideration and that might go some way to explain why I feel like a pressure cooker at the moment. I’m just really hoping I don’t explode any time soon. It won’t be pretty. I’m such an ugly crier.
My Mum always warns me to slow down, she berates me for going at 100mph with everything and tells me I take too much on. She’s right of course. All Mum’s are right. However, what’s the alternative? Say no to work, a social life and just take to my bed for the next month or so? How tempting would that be eh? But that would solve nothing, everything would be there when I emerged out of hibernation.
We all do it though don’t we? Make out we’re fine when in actual fact we feel like we’re drowning in a sea of shit.
I especially think Swan Syndrome is prevalent amongst Mothers. We’re constantly trying to balance everything. Home life, work life, our own lives, whilst making out to others’ that we’re totally bossing it. We have this licked.
Well, you know what? Right now I don’t feel like I’m bossing anything. It’s almost a miracle I’m making it through the day without screaming.
Often, I feel like I’m trying to be all things to all people and the plates I’m constantly trying to spin are about to come crashing down on me.
I know I’ve gone on here, and this probably makes jack all sense to anyone but you know what? I feel like a little weight (just a tiny one, like a 30g weight) has been lifted off my tensed up shoulders.
So, perhaps, putting my tired fingers to keyboard has been worthwhile, even if you now feel like your head is spinning like one of those plates I mentioned earlier. Soz about that.
But if this resonates with you then just know you’re not on your own.