… is 65 years old now. My parents were on holiday on her actual birthday, so we celebrated with my parents-in-law Saturday evening at a greek restaurant.
The picture above is the first of us together, it was made in August 1971. I had been born in May two months early, and just been released from the hospital. We don’t have pictures from the first three months of my life.
My mother and I may be very different, but we value each other very much. I admire her loyalty and perseverance. In difficult times you need people like her by your side, people who always see the good in everything and stay by your side.
My mother taught me to keep going when life gets hard. And she taught me to take good care of my loved ones – not just going through the motions, but to literally put my heart into it as well. I am not always able to do so, but I am trying.
I felt much better than last year. Not over the moon, but better.
It helped, that so many thought about me and wished me well, online and offline. That made me feel so good. Often I don’t like myself, so this was a welcome counterweight. And I am very thankful I didn’t have to spend this day alone.
We went to a nice restaurant in the evening. We meaning my husband, my parents and I. My parents in law were invited as well, but they are on holiday. Right now I feel most comfortable in small groups. But it was good to do something special on this day.
So, we started this year in style, and many good wishes will help me get along. That’s a good start. I will try to make the best of it.
I would have called it a disaster. My sister-in-law entered the living room, her six month old baby on her arm, and I just broke down. I waved goodbye, said I would be upstairs, and fled – into the arms of my dubious friend, the razor blade. After that, I took my as-needed-med and went to bed.
Later, my mother came to check on me and suggested we take a walk. So I changed and we walked through the rainy night for about fifteen minutes. This calmed me down. Then my mother went back to the party and I went to bed.
On Sunday I just felt miserable and stayed in bed.
Yesterday I felt at least a little bit better. But I knew I need some rest. So I cancelled the OT appointments for this week. I just want to calm down.
Today was even better. I put on make up, went grocery shopping and took a break having coffee and cake, before I drove back home.
It also helps that I started my usual “tour de chores” yesterday, like I do every Monday. With every room I clean, I get a little bit of safety back.
And to come back to my husband’s comment: At least I know for sure that I still am not ready to have contact with the baby. The uncertainty before was way worse. Everybody in the family knows where we stand. Everybody knows I need more time. This clarity is a good thing, despite all the pain.
But right know, I need some rest to regain my equilibrium. I have no doubt I will get better, but I need to take it easy this week. Wish me luck!
My husband’s birthday party on March 2nd is approaching. I feel more anxious and tense every day, and I am getting more and more insecure if I can deal with it.
I try to distract myself – and it works for a few hours. On Sunday I went to a charity event for listed dogs (potentially dangerous dogs of certain “listed” breeds) with a friend. The weather was nice, we met friendly people, I got to understand our dog Sam a little bit better, and we just had a wonderful girl’s day out. Spontaneously we agreed that I will accompany our friend and her dog to a training session tomorrow and film everything. This will be a great day as well. Sitting on the couch thinking won’t help me, this much I know.
Next week will be busy. On his birthday my husband wants to take cake to work for his colleagues – these guys always are hungry, so I will have to bake three cakes. On the evening of the birthday we will eat at a chinese restaurant, this is our date night in Februrary. At this day I will skip OT, it would be too much.
The rest of the week will be filled with chores, shopping, OT and preperations. I hope, a little distraction will keep my anxiety at a reasonable level. Because somehow I have to pass the time and keep my inner demons at bay.
With the end of May comes my birthday. This year I don’t feel like celebrating. This may be due to the fact that I am just feeling very blue at the moment. My worst case scenario is that everybody comes to party, while I am sobbing. This is not as unlikely as it may sound. I have shed tears over this thought and told my husband: “I wish my birthday didn’t exist!”
Well, I don’t live alone on an island, and there are dear people who WANT to celebrate my birthday with me. With those dear people, I agreed on celebrating later, when I feel better. It may not be my actual birthday then, but the mood will be right. On my actual birthday I will meet my father, and this will be it.
To tell other people I don’t feel like celebrating my birthday was hard. But I also want to listen to my heart and my feelings and not neglect them. So I think celebrating later is a good compromise.
A few minutes ago you let me know that there a only two pieces left of the cakes I made yesterday, and that they were delicious. I was very relieved to hear this, and I gave myself a pat on the shoulder for getting through Yesterday.
This morning I gave you a birthday card with some money in it. You wanted money, because there a some things you need to buy for the upcoming fishing/model building season.
I wish I would have been able to put more money in this envelope, but of course money is tight since I stopped working. You never complained about this.
I wish I could be there for you more often, but I am so busy fighting my demons. You shouldn’t need to console me when I am crying, repeating “I want to die! I want to be with Sammy!” for hours. You shouldn’t have to worry about me, because I have anxiety attacks and want to self harm. You shouldn’t need to think about how my walker fits best in the car. You shouldn’t have to be alone for weeks, because I need another inpatient stay on the psychiatric ward. But you are very loyal to me, your family and friends. You do what you can do.
I wish I could share the burden you have to carry. I see how tired you are when you come home from work, and at home there is more responsibilty to bear now. And there is your wife, always tired, who barely manages to cook a decent meal.
I wish I could make all of your dreams come true, you deserve it. We will have to settle for the little things, though. But you can be sure of that: I am so very grateful for everything you do for me. And I will keep on trying to make very many little things possible for you.
Days like today are hard. The days I put a lot of pressure on myself (we could have bought cake, after all). The days I know that what I start today has to be finished the same day (birthdays can’t be postponed to another date). The days that I know will be exhausting (my back doesn’t like sitting or standing for hours).
Tomorrow will be my husband’s birthday. For my sake, he didn’t invite friends and family to come over, because I really am not up to it right now. I want him at least to have a good time with his colleagues tomorrow. I want to do at least this for him.
It was as bad as I expected it to be. After standing in the kitchen for an hour, my back screamed bloody murder. My brain was foggy, I don’t know I often I had to read the instructions. And when I looked around after everything was finished, seeing the usual chaos of dirty bowls, sticky egg shells and burnt baking moulds, thinking “I should really clean everything up now, because I will have to cook later” I just wanted to scream, or cry.
But somehow I managed to pull through. My husband can present his colleagues with an eggnog ring cake, a cake resembling cow fur (white spots on chocolate dough), and a crumble cherry pie tomorrow. Eggnog and crumble cherry are his favourite, he let me choose the third.
The only thing left to do is signing the birthday card. Then everything is set for the big day.