In December and May I wrote posts giving links to my first two entries for the ‘A Day in the Life‘ project. The project involves writing a short piece about everyday life on four different days spanning a whole year. Anyone who experiences mental health difficulties can get involved, and not everyone submits an entry for each of the four days. The fourth and final day covered by this project is 26 August 2015 – if you would like to contribute, even if you haven’t done so before, please do visit the site and have a look. You will be able to register if you would like to take part.
On 7 November I wrote about being at home with the children, and how it turned out to be an ordinary day – even a good day – despite the fact that it started less than ideally, and I spent quite some time catastrophizing. It reminded me that we aren’t defined by our mental health difficulties, and neither are those difficulties invalidated by the fact that we can experience joy as well.
On 10 February I wrote about my day at work, and the ‘burden’ of apparent competence. The fact that I often feel trapped by my ability to carry on even when everything inside feels like it’s screaming and on the verge of collapse. I feel trapped by the necessity to carry on and the fear that if I don’t, those two parts of my life that I have held separate for so long – work and non-work – will come together and my world will quite literally fall apart.
The third day was Sunday 10 May. This time I wrote about going to church with my family, and about faith. The fact that I find it hard to have faith in God, in other people, and in myself. That often I sit in church and feel resentful of the fact that I am hiding who I am, even though that is entirely my own choice. It is a function of my lack of faith which means I don’t trust how people might react, who they might tell, and how they might respond to me in future. But sometimes it only takes a little faith – or, in this case, a little one’s faith – to restore some hope, and to bring some comfort and a sense of being loved.
Here is my account of Day 3.
(Please ignore the 10 February heading – this really is my account of 10 May!)
August 22, 2015 at 10:45 pm
Sounds like you have a lovely relationship with your children. As to faith, I can only say I’ve treated many people and read about many others who had doubts and hung on. I am not taking a stance here, just reporting what I’ve seen. Few make this public for reasons you can imagine. But, there it is. I seem to recall reading several books by Frederick Buechner, a theologian, in which he talks about his own doubts.
September 12, 2015 at 7:24 pm
Thank you for your lovely comment – on days like today, where I have been super irritable and grumpy, it’s nice to hear and be reminded that although I feel I do a ‘far less than ideal’ job much of the time (and that’s an understatement!), that’s not always the case, and we do have some very very lovely and close moments. As for faith…yes, I think I will hang on, as I have done before….but I think it will be a while before it is a more ‘present’ part of my life again. Thank you for the book suggestions -I will look them up 🙂