A Lack Of Self Care

It would be fair to say that all the signs were there. I just didn’t notice them all stacking up!

I knew I was feeling tired – all the time and I couldn’t shift it. I was getting cranky and annoyed at silly little things. My willpower was right down and I wanted to eat everything. I was procrastinating over almost everything and avoiding anything vaguely important. I could see friends having a truly torrid time and I was unable to send even a message of support, let alone offer any useful assistance. I was getting more susceptible to emotional responses rather than rational ones. My memory (not great at the best of times) was worse than ever.

So many signs but I didn’t see it coming – until it was too late. There was so much else going on demanding time and attention I wasn’t looking after myself and I couldn’t put any measures in place until I crashed. And on Friday, the moment came where everything toppled over and I crashed.

The tipping point? A friend sent me a gif! A 2 second long sodding video clip!

That one actually very kind and thoughtful gesture was the final thing to push my emotional state over the edge and drop me like a stone into the world of realisation. My demons had steadily taken over my mental state again. I cried!

Fortunately, although I never saw it coming, I have been able to immediately take a step back to a controlled state of mind. I can’t say that I feel great but I do feel better for realising and acknowledging what just happened. And, having been here so many times before, I could finally do something about it. I sat down and had a cup of tea. I did some mundane tasks. I planned just 2 things to do for Saturday and 2 for today – writing this is actually number 3 today, go me! I achieved all the things I planned. I went for my run yesterday morning and then prepped the last but I the field before the sheep arrived yesterday afternoon. Today I went for a bike ride and then taught my 2 Taekwondo classes.

So what now? Well I have my plan for tomorrow which starts with me time and then only has 2 tasks after that. The same the next day and then the same the one after that. KISS formula for the win!

Most important though, I refuse to feel bad for not seeing the signs. Over the last 2 weeks events have conspired not to put one cat amongst the pigeons but to take a whole pack of feral wild cats and dump them into the middle of Trafalgar Square with it’s multitude of pigeons. Then they appear to have added the madness of a box of frogs and the craziness of a bag of snakes. None of it is too much on it’s own but altogether it was way beyond my processing capacity and it took every minute of time and every ounce of energy. I stopped all the self care routines to try and fit it all in.

I will however choose to feel not necessarily good but relieved. Being able to respond and recover with the tools available is essential for all of us. It will take a while to be back up at full operating capacity but I have had a reminder of the need for regular self care if I’m to avoid a repeat. Hopefully next time I’ll see the signs a bit earlier and avoid the crash but if not, I can take reassurance from this weekend that I can keep fighting on.

So, apologies to anyone who needed a shoulder or more that I haven’t been able to help this last week. Please know that I have been thinking of you all and the struggles that you have been going through. And a massive thank you, from the bottom of my heart, to the person who sent me that gif on Friday. You could never have known the effect that it would have but it stopped my downward spiral dead in its tracks. If ever you need me I will always try to be there for you x