I made a big decision today, one that I’ve been agonising over for a solid week. Remember I said things were getting a touch hectic? I was wrong. They were way beyond hectic. On Friday I spent most of the day physically shaking, which hasn’t happened for months, and on Saturday I was so stressed that the prospect of my son’s birthday party had me on the verge of a meltdown. Yesterday I went into complete denial, and ignored the massive to do list that had to be got through by this evening if all the plates were to be kept spinning. I was beyond shattered.
So, I’ve elected to drop a plate. Remember Please Talk
? It somehow morphed from being a campaign, to becoming a full blown society. In theory, stunning idea. It gives it sustainability, stability, access to promotion etc etc etc. It also brings a fuck ton of work, which I didn’t really grasp until I sat down and actually looked at it. Meetings to be planned. Committees to be elected. Minutes to be taken. Members to be recruited. Members to be contacted……….etc etc etc. Too much, because all of this had to happen on my own time. It’s not part of my job, so it can’t happen at work. It needs dedicated time so I can’t do it in between making lunches and doing the homework. And it was going to take a considerable amount of energy away from the things that I need to keep well – this blog for one. I had reached the point of being so overwhelmed by everything that I needed to do, that I wasn’t in fact able to do anything. That’s not good for me. It is in fact a short hop from there to a swift decline into depression, guilt, self blame etc.
But here’s what’s interesting. I’m not beating myself up. As soon as I made the decision to take a step back, I started to breathe a little easier – turns out I’ve barely been breathing at all this last week. The campaign will continue, and everything I set out to do in my original plan will happen, but the extras can wait. It really would be a wonderful irony if my promoting a mental health campaign at work were to be my next tipping point.
I saw Therapist today, and talked about all of this, among other things, with her. She pointed out a really positive change in how I’m looking at things – a year ago, I would have perceived the need to take a step back as failure on my part, that I wasn’t good enough, or capable enough. Now, I can see that I simply took on too much at once, and need to look after myself. I’m no good to anyone if I make myself sick again. She also pointed out something else – this tendency towards taking on the world when I’m feeling good, believing I’m able to do absolutely everything, an overwhelming confidence that absolutely everything will work out exactly as I want it to – it’s part of what I’ve got. I hadn’t really thought of it like that, but she’s right. That kind of impulsivity (is that a word? It is now) is all part and parcel of borderline. It’s funny the way that these things are evolving – as the bigger crises are taken care of, the smaller behaviours that have caused problems over the years are coming to the fore, and they’re now the ones that need challenging.
Anyway, I digress. Right now, I mostly feel a massive sense of relief. Yes, there’s a little disappointment that it hasn’t worked out exactly as I would have liked, but I’m not using it as a stick to beat myself with. I’m one person. There’s only so much I can do. That fact is glaringly obvious to everyone around me, and I’m slowly coming to see it as well. Now that the adrenaline and anxiety have worn off, I’m mostly just shattered. I’ll sleep tonight!