Thursday, December 1, 2011

Infected "Shoulds"

It started quietly enough. I told myself I was brand-new married. I should be happy. And so I told everyone I was. Now, don't get me wrong, there's no problems in my marriage. My husband is amazing. I have everything I need. And that is exactly why I should be happy.

And then it turned into I should be a better wife/mother/church-goer/friend, etc. And I saw those aspirations slowly get further and further away. Not because they were moving, but because every time I used the word should, I would take a step back. My shoulds would get more infected. Each time I told myself I should be doing something, it meant I WASN'T doing it, or at least that I didn't want to. And I'd beat myself up about it, feeding the infection. I should go help this person, who was having a hard time. I should fulfill my obligations. I should have a clean house. I should have time for all of this. I should cook dinner. I should be nicer to my husband and daughter. I should not let that bother me. I should be stronger. I should know better. I should stop letting all of this get to me. I should, I should I should.

And then it got so bad, it was physical. My stomach has hurt for at least a month straight. It doesn't calm down if I eat, it doesn't calm down if I baby it. The thought of eating has repulsed me. And then I tell myself I should eat, make myself, still feel sick, but at least I'm getting some nutrition. Kind of. It's usually easier to convince myself to eat junk. But at first, I thought that was the whole problem. So I focused solely on making sure there was good nutritious stuff to eat. And I still felt sick. And it got worse. I'd not only have a stomach ache, but my entire mid-section would be one big double-over-in-pain cramp.

I've had headaches, too. Not the debilitating kind, but the "I don't feel like my head belongs" kind. The tunnel kind.

I'd shower and still not feel fresh.

I'd cry uncontrollably and for no reason.

I thought for sure it must be hormonal. So we tested my thyroid. And it was all normal. I asked the doc what the problem could be, then, and she started the thought processes rolling. Said it sounded like anxiety. I promptly told her (as I should) that my life was not NEARLY as stressful as it's been, so if I could make it through that, this should be easy. But after I left her office, I made a mental note.

Things have been building up this past week an a half, to finally help me realize how far I am. And then we went roller-skating. Something that was a). out of my comfort zone, b). in a crowd of people c). with people I knew and I wanted to like me. And I fell. It didn't even hurt. I mean, yeah, I might have bruised my wrist and tailbone, and yeah, it was the wrist I injured when I was a kid, but I could tell it wasn't serious. Especially being the wrist I had previously injured. But the fall seriously put me in shock. A stupid little fall, and I was seeing everything in tunnel vision, it sounded like everyone was talking to me from the other end of said tunnel. And boy, was I light headed! Suddenly nothing mattered except sitting down. Getting off the rink and re-gaining control. And that fall suddenly made me aware of myself. I'm serious, that fall should have been nothing. But I can't deny the PHYSICAL impact it had on me. It WAS something. It was, as they say, the straw that broke the camel's back. Of course, no one noticed. I was still being the person I should have been.

But the person at the inside of the tunnel... she suddenly became aware of her situation. And that's why she did some self-evaluation. Hence why I've decided to get back to blogging. So that I can 1) Stop shoulding and start doing, and  2) so I can stop pretending to  be someone I'm not and embrace the imperfect, often "quirky" me. AND all my faults.