yesterday I did a lot of thinking, dangerous I know, but with a brain like mine (why can't one get cosmetic lobotomies, I wonder? I mean who needs big t*ts when you're as flat chested as I am, but have a head full of too many thoughts) (and when your mother died of undiagnosed breast cancer, who needs t*ts anyhow) it's unavoidable

I was remembering the last time I'd been in the head hospital (I used to get google searches for "Paula Yates burning down the curtains with aroma therapy candles" back on the original ILTV when I wrote about this experience) and they had us do this exercise where you had to draw a road map of your life

mine had had a bit of a rocky start (miserable family life; parents one of whom had had a nervous breakdown but never explained the mysteries of depression to his children - but probably never knew himself - and one of them suffered from depression and OCD - but probably never knew that either - both of them blaming the other; and taking it out on my brothers and I)

then there was kind of an interesting bit when I escaped to Norway and Canada and New York (even tho they threw me out for being an illegal alien) going back to Manhattan; uni (even tho I'd wanted to go to art college and hadn't been allowed to, even tho I wanted to be a marine biologist and hadn't been allowed to, even tho I'd been offered a PhD post in Speech Synthesis years ahead of its time but hadn't been allowed to continue my studies etc etc)
and a hard working bit: corporate life within a blue chip; success at that (oh the joys of being a tall leggy natural blonde who wore short tight skirts and chatted to the secretaries as if they were human and got to speak to the directors as if they were human and then got to be in a position where I could tell them all to shut up and listen to me because I was such a junior human I didn't know you weren't supposed to tell the truth)
the "happy ever after bit": marriage to CH; pregnancy, redundancy, more pregnancies; undiagnosed postnatal depression. . .

yadda yadda yadda

so there my road map had ended, in this kind of dreadful (I thought at the time) cul-de-sac

and since then, I got out of hospital they finally fixed medication so it had some effect (only this time round the GP had lost the letter, so they didn't realise that I was supposed to be on Thyroxine to augment my anti-depression meds as opposed to having an under-performing thyroid) (that explains a lot of what has been going on for me since May/June) I lost all the baby weight and finally became again the tall leggy (not quite so natural, but I discovered the joys of the hair-dressing salon!)(and back combing!!) blonde who could wear short skirts again. . .

I learnt to knit; joined a LWL Book Club - read lots of brilliant books; helped out at school with art projects and seasonal crafts; made cup cakes galore and raised £s for good causes; joined the band and met LFV, Thea, LMV and The Tunesmith and their families, amongst others; discovered bookbinding and met The Bookbinder and lots of really interesting talented people (more interesting than some of the LWL and the other playground mums, but I had good friends in the playground and an excellent support network); the band went from a bunch of talented but not professional musicians meeting in a school canteen, to a fab pro-am group who performed in front of over 600 people in top venues and had bookings left right and centre such that it began to impinge on everyone's family daily and paying-job lives; won a prize for the first "real" book I made and it was exhibited at The British Library; my children were growing up getting brighter and happier and emotionally more competent. . .

. . .but somewhere along that new road CH and I lost ourselves

we worked really hard for eighteen months, we worked hard for another nine, perhaps not long enough in the context of 20 years worth of relationship; we argued about all the crap we'd never argued about, we admitted that we weren't happy and tried to rediscover what had made us happy enough in the first place to get together, we lost it again

this autumn we tried to find ourselves again, but I blew it

me and my stupid head full of thoughts and my heart full of emotion

so Christmas was not what I'd wanted for myself or my children or CH, altho it turned out to be what he wanted for himself (and he does deserve a little happiness and respite from my head and my heart) (and he is a very very good father and a very decent honourable man) and I finally lost it and then before New Year I lost myself

*short interlude in head hospital*

(no celeb sightings this time)

and yesterday I was thinking about how my new road map from the new millennium had panned out, and the unacknowledged comfort that had come from going around and around that original cul-de-sac. . .

and I got really really scared




and I had one of those weekends where altho there were some lovely bits, some really bad stuff happened. . .

and now it's Monday morning again
and I realise that this is my cul-de-sac now

. . .no, not the blog, altho you might find it a little circular

so, here I am, going round and round - but this time it's a kind of Monday to Friday cul-de-sac with really really scary weekends in the middle


Mel said...

Weekends have always been scarier.....more 'think' and less 'do' time. More 'me' and less 'others'. The noise would stop and I'd be left
I can't say I much liked my own company.
Wisepersoninmylife was right--the difference between lonliness and solitude is how much you're liking the company you're keeping.

Himself got up and said, in his Mr. Crabby Pants sorta way, "Oh, look. It's snowing for a change..."
I looked outside and chimed "It's Iowa, it's winter---ain't it cool?!"

Perceptions, eh?

I'm gonna make me a snowangel.

And we need to find you a few weekend wanderings....places a bit less scary, eh?

Mel said...

And ohhhhhhh what timelines showed me.
Looking back I see it differently today. (go figure that, eh?)

Rimshot said...

Rimshot timeline = flatline. (me, me, me!)

You've quite the full and eventful life, I,S,LTV. Should I be jealous? I might even be tempted to trade.


Gordie said...

That was such a lovely post. Thank you. (I realise it isn't the happiest of stories, but you told it so well, and it all made sense.)

mig bardsley said...

First thought, I am so touched and honoured to be reading this.
Second thought, what a heck of a lot you've done and achieved.
And then, well, all I can say is ((((((I)))))).
I'll be thinking of you during every single weekend and sending the best and strongest wishes your way.


Mel said...

I had to come back to tell you that I was honoured to be given all that I was given from here, today. (Mig beat me to it...but that's okay.....)

And as one who sucks at just letting things look how they are--very honoured and feeling privileged beyond privileged.

((((((( ILTV ))))))))))

Malc said...

I was going to say something inane and not very helpful like time being a great healer and all that.

I used to hate weekends. I was always working and never had time for the children in particular. I came to associate two days of the week with guilt and anger.

First I changed job, then I stopped having a job - unless you count the pig farming, house renovation, gazing wistfully at the view etc.

Saturday and Sunday are great now, but so are Monday and all the others.

Time and the way life changes helped me, that's all I'm saying. I hope it does for you too.