Wow that sounds dumb. Like mega dumb. Rainbow Dash should not be anyone’s barometer for emotional well being. But it’s also true.
Late last year I felt the black dog nipping. I stopped updating here because I just felt like I didn’t have anything left to share and I just started going through the motions and keeping on keeping on. I wish I could say it was something beautiful and meaningful to help me fight the dragons of my own depression quest but it really wasn’t. Rainbow Dash pulled me through like a sonic freakin rainboom.
Anyone with depression can tell you that while you wish it was something noble and important that pulls you out, sometimes it’s something unlikely or seemingly silly. Like using up your last emotion on not being able to rent Jumanji or a piece of corn under the fridge.
For me, it’s usually been music. Music has always been huge part of my life, and for some reason when I’m in these colossal funks, I’ll hear a song that I might have heard a million times before but all of a sudden it means hope. I start to cry and I can suddenly see the light at the end of the tunnel. It’s never been a song sung by animated ponies and pirate parrots before, but hey parenthood does do strange things to your listening habits. Bear has been listening to the soundtrack pretty much non stop since the movie came out so perhaps the ponies just needed to completely ram it home before it finally got through.
I know the world can get you down
Things don’t work out quite the way that you thought
Feeling like all your best days are done
Your fears and doubts are all you’ve got
You could actually be talking about being a working mother right there. Because it feels like a slog. I mean it is a slog. I love my son but I tend to romanticize motherhood during the day while I’m trying to get my head around work. Don’t worry – he helpfully shatters that illusion when I come home to meltdown madness because someone (me) forgot to wash the goddamn Captain America spoon that he uses for every meal and I can’t find a replacement for any bloody where that’s the right size, because apparently there is a right and a wrong size for a Captain America spoon. Who knew?
Ahem. Sorry. Got off track there. My point is the mental load of work and home gets exhausting. Doctors’ appointments and release schedules, pings and playdates, Santa and SQL. I felt like I was at my storage capacity, if you’ll forgive my IT jargon. There was literally no memory left underneath the dull routine that is the life of a working family.
But there’s a light, shining deep inside
Beneath those fears and doubts so just squash ’em
And let it shine for all the world to see
That it is time, yeah, time to be awesome!’
Somehow listening to this made me realise that it only takes a small step to be awesome. Sometimes the most awesome voice is not the one that roars but the quiet one that says try again tomorrow. And sometimes awesome is just looking at the laundry basket and thinking ‘ The world will not end if you are not folded. I don’t have to give a fuck about you today. Today I read a book while having my back massaged by toy cars’. It’s finding that capacity for the small joys again and trusting that you can work up to the big ones.
You’ve no idea how hard its been
This dull routine we’ve been forced to do
Don’t let it rob you of who you are
Be awesome, it’s all up to you
I feel the light stirring deep inside
It’s like a tale still yet to be told
And now it’s time to break the shackles free
And start living like the brave and the bold
This banal but infectious song got me thinking and most importantly it got me talking. I talked to my husband about how the load has affected me and how I’ve been struggling when he travels more and more towards the end of the year. I talked to my boss and negotiated a flexible day off once a month that I spend recharging my batteries. I talked to my doctor to start taking the steps I needed to. And I started talking here again as evidenced by this post. I may not be here every week and I sometimes might need to back away for my own sanity but for the moment I am here.
Because it’s time, yeah it’s time to be awesome.
It doesn’t matter what gets you through – so long as you get through. Mental health is the solid foundation of life. Most people don’t work on keeping a healthy mental mind as society seems to think unless you are suffering from a metal illness – you are OK. Keep listening to the song and smiling through it. Hope 2018 is a better year for you.
I’m glad something got you thinking and made you take those steps xx
I’m glad you’ve been able to take the steps you’ve needed to help you out. And a day off work per month to take care of yourself sounds wonderful, actually!
It is time to be awesome, but don’t forget, you already are!
I love this. It’s really true, you never know what it is that will get you there. Thanks for sharing.
From little things big things grow…. I too struggle with the black dog.
This sounds like a song I need to get! I’ve bene really lucky to have mostly been working from home these last few years but this last week and a half I’ve been working a freelance job at a studio in the city and it’s involved a 4-hour daily commute and long days at the studio. It certainly reminded me of how lucky I am to get to work from home for the most part, and given me a much greater sympathy for those Mum’s for whom that routine is their “normal”. You are superwomen!!!