Sometimes I struggle to write. This can happen for a few reasons, but usually it is because something is in the way. Another thought, another idea, another set of emotions which needs to be processed before I can tap into the part of my brain which allows me to think openly about some of the topics I want to write about. So instead of being able to write the spanking post for Tell Me About that I wanted to tackle this weekend, I am here, writing this and trying to make sense of what is going on with me. It makes me realise that for me, writing has become a big part of my self-care.
One of the things that has happened is that I find myself, once again, over committed. I don’t think I really took on too much, but I was pretty much at my limit in terms of what I had committed to, when another couple of things came along just by chance. This lead to me being aware that I was going to have to cut some corners in areas where I really wanted straight edges and things to be nice and neat. On top of that I had to deal with an incident earlier in the week which was not very pleasant, and that drew on my emotions and my headspace, putting me under further pressure.
I think that all of that would have been ok but over the last few days, I have felt that it wasn’t. The situation I dealt with has thrown me straight back into a sea of emotions which I thought had been resolved. Actually they hadn’t been. It is almost like all the old memories which have been stirred up and the old feelings which went along with them, have forced their way into my present, where there is no need and no place for them. I have struggled to control them or manage them, and I will admit, that they have found a way to set up camp in my mind.
These feelings go back to a previous relationship where behaviours which were not acceptable were pretty much normalised. Despite how I felt about my circumstances, they were trivialised and dismissed really, not in a hurtful way, but in the way that can happen when those close to you have no real understanding of how difficult your reality is. When they measure things according to the safety and security of their own world. and view them as one off incidents whose impact will be no longer lived than the conversation you are having with them takes to recount.
But they don’t pass with the conversation. They are buried away with the shame and the guilt of being dysfunctional. You become part of it all and although inside you are screaming out that it is wrong, the fact that it is dismissed makes you question yourself and what you feel. You try harder to manage better. You try harder not to feel those things, the anger, the guilt, the frustration, the embarrassment because the actions are not yours. You try harder to do more, to make up for the failings you see, to fill the spaces which are left. and neutralise the damage that is taking place.
You become complicit somehow, while you remain there, part of the lie that others want to see. Covering the tracks to keep up appearances and spinning the plates for damage limitation. You assume others see, and they do see the cracks, but the depth of the abyss you are hidden within, is known by you alone. It isn’t normal. It shouldn’t be happening but it is, and you are powerless to stop it now that the wheels are set in motion. The inevitability grinds you down but you see no real way out, and so you carry on, making the best of things, the way that you do.
So when many years later, something happens to throw you back to those emotions, it is hard. Seeing them in the cold light of a new day, there is no normalising what happened. The reality of things hits you and you wonder that no one understood. You feel the force of the guilt that you were unable to protect those who depended on you from what they saw and what they experienced. The years have provided the distance to sit down and discuss the things which went unsaid at the time, and it all sneaks up on you and knocks you sideways a bit.
I know that this probably reads in a very ambiguous way, but I am not able to expand on the details. Full disclosure would be helpful for me but it is not something which I can do here. All I can really say is that this is what happened and it has floored me a little. It has left me feeling emotionally wrung out and mentally overwhelmed. I am lucky that I am able to write and that it helps to see the words on the page. Typing them is healing and it takes the power off the feelings and diminishes them somehow. I am not sure how long they will be here, but I hope now that I am able to express them, they will start to crawl away.
As for being over committed, I am fortunate I am in a relationship where I can list off the things that swim in a sea around me, and remain static while HL brings them to me one by one. That helps more than anything and being able to trust him to take control of things and break it all down really helps. It is gentle and manageable and it is what I need and want. I am no longer treading water and trying to keep afloat. I am not yet back on dry land, but neither am I drifting out to sea. I know it will take time and things from the past are never really gone, but they will diminish and I will continue to try to protect those I care about from their impact.
If you would like to read more of my posts about mental health, please find them here.