I have been parenting children (was one child for a while) for seven years. I have been parenting mental illness of seven years now. I have been choking back my own trauma from parenting trauma for seven years now. I have gained about thirty five pounds from parenting trauma and mental illness for seven years now. I have also gained anxiety and PTSD from parenting trauma and mental illness for seven years.
Both of my children have mental illness. I LOVE MY CHILDREN! It is my reality. It is not a reality I knew would be mine, but I lovingly chose to raise my children. I may have been naive to the truly monumental job I was taking on BUT I chose it none the less. I don't need pity. I don't want pity. I don't want people to give me those looks of pity that I am put upon. I am not put upon. I chose my children. My husband and chose to love these children and to give them a chance to flourish with our love. Except, Love isn't enough. Love is not all that you need to help these children.
I was meeting with someone on my daughter, Rosie's team and she said I have blocked myself off. I am dismissive of my own feeling and that I have closed myself off from everyone in the world. She said it is as if I have no affect. I have no reaction to anything. I am doing what I have to do to get through my day, superficially engaging with all of those around me. WOW! I have RAD! It was sobering to realize I have taken on so many of those things from my children.
Of course, this isn't their fault. I don't believe this is on them at all. They are victims themselves. We have now all become victims of their trauma, abuse, neglect and mental illness.
I feel as though I have no support system. I feel as though I am completely isolated from the human race. I feel judged at every turn. I don't trust anyone. I am suspect of everyone around me. I don't even cry anymore. I laugh and make everything a joke. I won't allow anyone to have empathy for me. I won't let anyone close to me. I am so very quick to attack and so very quick to shut them out. I hadn't thought about this ever! This woman has opened my eyes to my own behaviors. I have always blamed their trauma, their mental illness...that was why I am alone in the world.
In reality that is not the case. I don't have a support system right now...but it is because I have alienated them. I have become so hardened and so immune to love and support that I don't feel it. I am afraid to let them in. I can see where I stopped them in their tracks. I am trying to fix this with my loved ones but sometimes those relationships are hard to mend. I am still full of my own hurt and pain...I am not able to reach out, though I know it is mine to do.
I want so badly for someone to come to my house and hug me....Tell me it will be ok and that they love me no matter what. That I matter. And yet...I don't know how to reach out for that. I am hurting so badly inside yet I don't allow myself to feel it. I want the world to see I can handle it all...when I can't.
I said all of this to say....sometimes things don't appear as they seem. People can be hurting so much when they seem so strong. Allow someone a second, third, twentieth chance. Love them wholly and unconditionally...and if you can...go to the person's home and give them a hug....They don't need their life to be fixed, and they don't need pity....they just need to know...They aren't alone and that they are loved....So love them. Hug them tight!
Have a grace and blessing filled day!