Life is not easy at this moment. It feels like we are caught up in a storm, and just when there’s a clearing in the clouds, and we think it’s going to get better, it turns out we were only in the eye of the storm. The storm continues, and sometimes seem even worse than it was before.
I am writing this after two intense weeks, weeks that left me so tired that even after two nights of good sleep, I am still tired.
This storm started a year ago
When I refer to the storm, I am not talking about Covid. Yes, Covid definitely is a storm that entered our lives too, and it’s still raging on around us, but there’s a different, more violent storm dwarfing the Covid one.
I am talking about my son, and his currently severe mental health problems. He was doing so well, a year ago, being in assisted living, with one conversation of an hour a week with a mentor. Every day he cooked for himself, he kept his house clean, and went to his volunteer job four days a week while applying for paid jobs.
Then he met a girl, and sadly, from there it went downhill. I only learned in November that he had been self-harming for months. I knew he was seeing a psych worker again, because he wanted to work through issues that arose in his relationship, because of the previous two he had. Those previous two were mostly online, but emotionally abusive. He never told me how serious it was, until in November it was so bad, they had to inform me.
In the past months I have supported him as well as I could, always being there for him or his girlfriend to call me when he needed to be ‘talked down’. Every time I spoke to him in his agitated state, was after he and his girlfriend had a ‘misunderstanding’.
The past two weeks
In the past two weeks things escalated terribly, from him telling me he temporarily didn’t want any contact, to trying to take his own life that same night. I slept there a couple of nights, went there during daytime just to be with him, because he couldn’t be left alone. There was numerous phone calls. Desperate moments. Words not spoken from my side, because I know he’s not ready to hear them.
Then finally, after two weeks and feeling drained, the relieving word came: he would be admitted to a clinic. I even got a chance to talk to his mentor, and he confirmed that they had seen the same problem I had: the girlfriend. As the mentor said: my son is caught up in a situation, and we need to make him see that. They are just not good for each other, at this moment. And maybe never. Time will tell, but as it is now, she’s at the root of his self-harming. I don’t want to go into too many details here, as it’s my son’s story after all.
My own mental health
I care deeply for my kids. Seeing them happy and thriving is what I want for them. I have definitely not been a perfect mom. Because I was a mom at a too young age, and because I had shaky relationships before Master T, I made mistakes with my kids. However, I always loved them, always wanted the best for them. Sometimes I had two shitty choices, and chose the better one of the two.
One (annoying) part of my personality is to see all my mistakes clearly when situations call for it. This means with that in this situation with my son, I wonder how much of what I did ‘wrong’ in his younger years, have influence on him now. I drive myself crazy with these thoughts, while being intensely worried about my child. I fear for his life, literally; see the emotional abuse (again), and I fear he will not get out of her claws before it’s too late.
Because of the fear, the guilt, the worry, I notice myself slipping. I am withdrawing; smiling outwardly while not feeling it. I have headaches, every day, many days accompanied by dizziness and nausea. Pouring myself into my work helps. Not only blog work, but my paid job too. It takes my mind off things, only for it to hit me double as hard when I stop working. It haunts me in my dreams at night, when at last I get a bit of decent sleep.
I am doing my best to build in some rest for myself. A new tablet and subscription to a Dutch streaming service helps.
This storm too shall pass
I am an optimistic person at heart. The positive is what I prefer to concentrate on, and I push the negative away. Sometimes this isn’t possible, and you get caught up in a negative situation, and have to work through it. Even then, in the midst of the negativity, I try to focus on the positive.
I have lived through many storms in my life. This storm too shall pass. We will get to the other side, one way or the other. I keep on telling my son the same — that he is strong, and he will get through this. I tell him to lean on me, to allow himself feeling weak, so he can get stronger again. And while he leans on me, I lean on Master T, and a bit on my daughter. We will all get through this.
The same with Covid. I know this storm hasn’t hit us as hard as it has others, and for that I am thankful. We will get through this. We will get back to normal again, whatever that will look like on the other side.
Like all storms, this one will pass, and there will be glorious sunshine on the other side.
© Rebel’s Notes
Image from Pixabay