February 10, 2016

Why it's Become Hard to Talk About My Feelings


This right here is what I have been struggling with reconciling and overcoming in order to be able to share the genuine thoughts, feelings, and experiences of my life right now, specifically as regards my role as a spousal caregiver.

But not only that. Because, you see, everything in my life is colored by my husband's health problems. My other relationships, my parenting, how I see the world...

There is something else I'm noticing too, though. It seems that my lack of communication -- whether here or IRL -- is only serving to isolate me, and make it that much harder to open up.

It's a bit of a conundrum.

I am painfully aware that no one in my life can truly understand what I'm going through (which is a shitty thing to say because I certainly don't wish my difficulties on anyone). I know this because my own husband can't. Nor can I really identify with what he's going through. We actually butt heads over the differences in our perspectives sometimes.

I can accept the lack of understanding. I'm pretty sure that on some level, every last one of us feels things that others can't fathom. It's because we are all unique beings going through a particular set of life experiences.

I know.

In lieu of that "you get me" feeling, I sincerely appreciate when someone just listens and nods. I don't like it when people try to solve my problems unless I expressly ask. I recognize the urge to fix things for someone you love, but it quite literally makes me shut down if someone's only response to my sharing is suggestions on how to make it better. I'm a smart girl; chances are, if you're thinking of it, I likely have too.

The Serenity Prayer is my jam. I've got the whole "change the things you can" thing down.

The other problem with trying to 'splain myself, is that it is really damn confusing. There are many contradictory thoughts and emotions in my head and heart. One minute I'm cruising along, feeling like it's OK and I've got this, and the next I feel like the sky is falling and everything is shit.

I feel love and anger. Empowerment and defeat. Compassion and impatience. Productive and bored. Relieved and stressed. Contentment and envy. Joy and heartache.

You get the idea.

It only becomes more confusing as time marches on. More things happen and more things change. There is a perpetual need to adapt and adjust; the learning curve is staggering and energy-sapping.

I'm tired. Never in my life have I wanted to hide in bed like I do these days. I don't, though. I get up every single day and fight to make the best of however the days go.

I feel guilt. So much guilt, on so many levels. I don't want to talk about all the ways in which I feel I'm failing. Would you?

Part of me also feels like it doesn't matter. Why talk about how I'm feeling? It doesn't change anything. It's not going to make Mark better, not going to give me back my husband....

It feels selfish. Although I know it shouldn't. A person is allowed to have their feelings and talk about them if they want to. That's what I would say to someone else.

I'm in the thick of it. The constant need for me to keep it together and manage everything is, well, constant. It never lets up. Mark and I had a conversation last night that left me feeling like I could cry a little, but I sucked it up because of my kids.

My therapist dying on me is no good. I hadn't been seeing him for over a year but was thinking about giving him a call when I got a letter about his passing. I cannot tell you how unsettling it is knowing I don't have that resource in my back pocket anymore. The thought of starting over with a new counselor makes my stomach turn a little.

....not that I could take an hour to see a therapist. I haven't even been getting out for my walks for months now. I don't like leaving Mark alone at all anymore.

This is where I'm at right now.

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