Despite being determined to be kinder to myself during this pregnancy, I am absolutely shattered today. I am finding that it is one thing to know what is best for yourself, quite another to put it into practice. After a wonderful but full-on wedding and a day of bulk cooking, cleaning and visiting I found getting up for work early the hardest I ever have.
I think I am going to have to take this rest thing a lot more seriously. It doesn’t help I had a very unsettling day yesterday. I work up with a feeling of lethargy and sluggishness which reminded me of the baby blues I had after Gorgeous was born. It scared me a little, that dark place is somewhere I never want to go again. I sat quietly for a while then forced myself to get up and get moving. Action is usually the one thing that overcomes lethargy, indecision and anxiety for me more quickly than anything else. I tried getting breakfast ready and helping the kids getting homework out of the way, but all this did was make me more and more angry.
Have I ever mentioned I used to have the most horrendous problem with anger? Throwing things, hitting people (I hope my sisters are not reading this!), shouting and suddenly blowing my top without warning. Controlling this is something I have worked very hard on because I didn’t feel that my lovely, kind husband and my innocent children should ever have to bear that kind of behaviour. I prayed and prayed for this and over the years was amazed at how much I had changed from the person I use to be. I have read the following a while ago:
"Love brings up everything unlike itself. Fear is detoxed, subconsciously brought to the fore whenever love arrives. Once aroused, it will either trigger us or depart from us, depending on whether it is forgiven or punished." ~ Marianne Williamson ~
I believe that my husband’s love, patience and kindness helped to work through much of my anger.
But yesterday I could feel the rage come back in full force. I shouted at the kids a few times and lobbed a few things down the stairs before I realised this was getting stupid and the kids hadn’t really done anything. I decided to step away before I hurt someone. I asked mum-in-law to take over with lunch and fled to my room where I spent the next half hour taking my bedroom apart, getting the kids to take all of boxes of beads downstairs, covering up my card making supplies with a big black shayla and emptying out draws. There was only so much I could do before lunch and I ended up with lots of piles of stuff around my room, but getting started felt good.
I realise now that I have felt this anger surfacing a few times over the last few weeks. I am not sure if it is hormones, anxiety about the state the house has gotten into over the years or just a feeling of being very restricted in how much I can do which has left me struggling to fulfil many obligations. I think a mixture of all three.
The act of emptying out those draws was so cathartic though. Just putting things in rows and straitening out draws and making the decision to get rid of things I know I will never use really helped.
The midday prayer also helped, as prayer always does. By the time I went to the Sunday afternoon Sisters halaqa (study circle) I felt calm again. I spent the afternoon exhausting myself cleaning and cooking. Having Little Lady in tow helping with throwing spices into the pot, measuring out rice, finding ingredients and washing vegetables was nice, a bit like making amends for all of the loud scolding in the morning.
I think I am going to continue with the big clear out, half an hour at a time – just what I can manage. I am also going to try very hard to find a space in the day where I can rest – every single day! It’s a small thing, but such a big mental shift for me to be able to stop doing all of the time and just be for a while. For today, that quiet, restful space will be my mum’s sofa I think.