I have come to some conclusions. My tank is dangerously low and is about to run dry.
Things that used to fill my tank up: Going to church, having all the kids in Children’s church and being able to sit with my husband quietly, enjoy worship and teaching together; going out on Wednesday night’s with my girlfriends and just talking nonstop for several hours; going on a weekly date night with my husband.
The first two have been affected by the quarantine, the last by having foster kids who are a bit much for my teenagers to handle when babysitting.
At the same time, the mental energy that has been required of me has quadrupled. I think what is mostly wearing me out is being the resident Psychologist of the home.
I am what people call a “good listener”. Which is fine, until you are absolutely drained dry and then you just feel like plugging your ears and saying NO MORE!
RIght now, I’m sure there are a lot of people thinking, well, why don’t you try this or that or what about this idea? Just get creative! You can still figure out how to get your tank filled.
And here is what people don’t realize. Exhausted, worn out, anxious or depressed people, they really don’t have the energy to get creative. Getting creative requires mental energy.
I remember my momentous 6 week postpartum check up after Phoebe was born. The Dr was horrible. She came in, looked at me a little puzzled, “Were you the one that had a C-section?”
Uh no. Wrong patient. I reminded her of who I was and what my birth involved. Ah yes.
Then, at the end she asked me if I was having any problems with depression. I said yes, this was something I struggled with. Her response. Well, for goodness sakes, go find some help somewhere, I don’t want to read about you in the news.
Gee. Thanks. I’ll do that. Because a depressed person definitely has all the motivation and energy in the world to go figure out insurance and find a provider and wait the two months it takes to get into a first appointment.
Compare that to my yearly check up I had with my Primary Care Doctor recently. I told her about some of the things I was struggling with and she said, You know, we have a resident Psychologist here, if you’re willing to wait a little bit, she can come and talk to you right now. And then she came and we talked and then scheduled future appointments.
I know that life doesn’t work that way most of the time. Usually, if you are needing something, you are really the only one that can make sure you get what you need. In the end, you are responsible for your own mental health. I think though, that people who don’t struggle in this area, don’t realize how hard it is to take of yourself. It’s really, really hard.
But, understanding the problem is half the battle. And I guess, that’s partly why I blog. I start writing, and it helps me think through the problem.
So, I guess that’s what I’ve got to concentrate on, getting creative, despite the exhaustion, cause it’s a matter of survival.