My friend Lacee asked me recently if I was doing okay with everything going on and rather than my usual,”yeah i’m okay” response I said, “I think I am okay, but I am not slowing down to find out.”  It made me think about how many times someone has asked me “How are you doing?” and I have never truly, honestly answered them.  mostly its because I dont really feel like the conversation allows the amount of time it would take to openly share everything going on in my life right now… but also because I am learning that I effectively hide how hurt, scared and overwhelmed I am and to honestly answer that question would mean to honestly admit these faults of mine.

Depression.  This word carries a very heavy stereotype.  When I hear this word I think of someone who is always sad, secluding themselves from the world, hurting themselves simply to feel something and feeling alone and rejected enough to permanently damage their self esteem.  My therapist said to me recently that he felt I might have a slight case of depression and I laughed.  How could he know; especially when I purposely avoid letting my feelings show….why would he even say that?  I’ve spent my entire life shrugging off my feelings so that I can maintain this picture of who I am to the world.  All those things that come to mind when I hear the word depression are not me.  At least that’s what I tell myself.

He tried telling me a while back that I needed to “sit in my pain,” again I laughed.  I refused to whole heartedly commit to it because I didn’t see the point in wallowing in my negative feelings if they can’t change anything.  I am learning now that as wonderful as this sounds I wasn’t doing myself any favors by doing this; I was running away from my feelings and hiding them from everyone around me.  Part of it is being afraid of admitting that I have these feelings, but another part is that I was afraid I would be buried by the depression.  I could never put the words to it.  I would say, “If I sit in my pain I may never get back up…” but I never realized exactly what I was saying.  I see now that I was afraid to admit to myself that I do suffer from depression. In order to address these feelings and heal the pain in my life I know I need to confront them, but walking back to this place; feeling like I am heading towards a rocky bottom that I can not climb out of…. this is what I am afraid of.

So when someone asks me, “How are you doing?”  Truth usually is I feel like I could cry any minute, I am angry, I am hurting and feeling like I am broken inside.  I feel like I am being pulled in a million different directions and don’t have enough sanity or patience to accomplish any of my goals successfully.  How am I doing? I am torn apart over watching my grandparents suffer and fall to pieces because of the stress this eviction process is causing.  I am infuriated with these people that my family trusted to care for my grandparents; that they have the audacity to harass them and disrespect them the way that they are!  I am scared that this will be a huge change for my family and worried that my children may not adjust well; my grandparents may not adjust well.  Hell… my grandparents may not even recover from this at all.  I am scared every day that Kaelob’s school is going to call and kick him out.  I am angry that they look at me to fix everything, yet don’t call me until it has escalated too far.  I am frustrated that we are unable to bring Eric home soon enough to make all this go away and give my children their daddy back.  My heart aches everyday that I can’t have Eric by my side for all the moments that matter; all the times that we could say “remember when” but daddy wasn’t there.  I fight tears all the times my children are crying for him or do something they are proud of and look around to see me and I see in their eyes that they were looking for him.  I am second rate.  I know children need their mother and I have a special place in their lives… but all I see in their eyes is that they need their daddy.  All I hear in their voice is that they want their daddy.  It is a pain I can not fix.  I fear the day we go to a Soccer game or event and they are old enough to realize that everyone else has their daddy there except for them…  I pretend like I dont walk on eggshells wondering when he will be home again, when he will have to leave again…. I never know…. and truthfully it has always made me feel helpless and a nervous wreck.  I have no control over this but have to prepare myself for all the unfortunate possibilities.  I feel like I am a frenzied mess, ready to leap at any moment to fix, heal, comfort in any way I can because its my job, yet I don’t take care of myself.

I tend to cover up my emotions and blame them on hormones; a lovely gift from bearing three children.  However, I am learning that it is more than that.  I may cry when an ambulance drives by or at silly Disney movies or Hallmark commercials, but I also feel like if I slow down enough to realize how much I am struggling with; how much pain I am really in….. I might cry and cry and never stop.  I still believe that negative feelings will get me no where and my solution to depression is positive thoughts and accomplishments, however I am realizing that if I dont ever address the negative feelings I cant ever truly move past them.  This is my attempt to slow down; amidst crying babies, back yard bike accidents, snarling 4yr old temper tantrums, spilt coffee, escaping cats, and pasta boiling over on the stove.  This is my attempt to face my imperfections, my pain….my ugly, sinful nature.  Let’s call it a work in progress…

One last thing; I want to share with you a poem I wrote over ten years ago.  I truly believe my honesty now will prevent me from ever feeling like this again!

There is a little girl

Who lives in a world that is cold.

It is empty and cruel and anything but perfect

But sometimes the world she lives in turns

And that sunlight, that grace of God she dreams to bask in,

Splashes over into her life, and for those few seconds she is happy…

Genuinely happy, but as all good things do, her world turns again

Leaving her in the dark cold abyss that is called her life.

Days, weeks, months, hours, minutes, they all become

One long sad moment of loneliness and morbid solitude.

Big hard cold walls surround her.

Their substance is something created by her mind.

Her stubbornness and pig headed ways.

She tells herself that light and grace shines bright and full of glory

Outside those walls, but she is wrong. It is just as dark but everyone else

Most everyone else, in their worlds are surrounded by friends, family,

By people who keep each other warm, full of love and good cheer.

She is too scared to break these walls and ask one of those “kind” “warm” people

To come and be with her…so she sits alone in the dark…crying and praying that someday those walls will just fall, or someone will knock it down for her.

But no one has, no one will, and no one can…so this little girl, lives alone in her cold

And empty world…dreaming and wishing and praying …maybe someone will hear her…

Listen….do you hear her?

4 Replies to “Overwhelmingly Overwhelmed!”

  1. my heart hurts for you rabecca. i think it’s good that you’re slowing down to think about the things going on inside though. i like to keep busy to ignore that stuff too, but it is real and important. i’m praying for you. hang in there; you’re not alone. <3

  2. I love you Becky!! Know that I am ALWAYS here for you and when I ask how you are, I really mean it! Tabitha’s right, you are definitely not alone in your feelings even if your situation is unique to others’. Always remember that you are an AMAZING mother, wife and woman! Prayin for you girl!!

  3. thanks guys. I definitely understand that a lot of people deal with similar feelings I just hate the unproductive feeling of actually “sitting in the pain” and knowing that I cant really fix it so what’s the point. I hate the weakness I feel when accepting these feelings, when I thought it would give me a power and freedom…. I guess it will come in time.

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