Ordinary Mum: My War with Worry

Have you ever felt like your head is cloudy and you have a million things to do but you just don’t know where to start? When people ask if they can help but you’re not sure how to explain what you even need help with. Maybe you’re not even sure what the problem is. You might just feel passive, like life is happening and you’re involved but sometimes you feel as though you’re not really there?

Over recent weeks, I’ve had a bit of a health scare. I’ve been getting daily headaches, migraines and dizziness and I just can’t think straight. Had a few tests due to some neurological family history and a hospital stay. I’m fine in the sense that there is nothing sinister going on and will just need check ups but I just don’t feel right and the knock on effect is the worry. Put simply, I just haven’t been myself.

It’s weird getting ill when you’re a mum; Little Lass has just turned one and suddenly everything seems so much more fragile. I’d like to think that I am a positive person but I keep wondering – what if the worst happened? It’s scary when someone depends on you.

It’s likely that my overthinking is making me feel worse. It makes me feel as though I’m not in control. But are we ever really in control of anything anyway? I don’t know how much my headaches and dizziness are because of illness, anxiety, my work or just being a new mum this last year. A combination maybe?

In the spirit of self-help, I’ve been reading a book about Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). I’ve heard from family and friends, fellow Ordinaries who felt that they have needed support to train their thoughts and be kinder to themselves. Just reading a few chapters has already helped me to break down my worries into specific things rather than feeling anxious about everything in general. Of course, it’s not a magic wand but it can help to challenge what could become consuming thoughts.

Like some women who are influenced by well-meaning empowerment messages about women “having it all”, I can often feel that I’m falling short of that imagined perfection which triggers my inner critic and leaves me feeling like I’m failing – at work and at home. If I don’t complete every little thing I set out to do each day then somehow I’ve achieved nothing. CBT is helping me to look at the things I do DO and encourages us to adopt “my good is good enough” approach to life. Because how many of us are as kind to ourselves as we would be to a friend or loved one? Hmmm. Exactly!

We’ll see how it goes…

….. I deliberated about writing this post feeling that it’s very heart-on-my-sleeve but it’s helped me to reflect on how I feel and what I need to do to feel better. And if you have ever felt like me, to let you know that you’re not alone… ❤️

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