Have you ever felt like you were on the verge of a mental breakdown, but you just didn’t have the time? Doesn’t that just sound like such a mom thing?
I recently had this feeling. I’ve had mild anxiety my entire adult life, but the last couple of months have been rough. It started in April. I was trying to catch up on some of my girls’ schooling. We were behind from being sick and I wanted to be done in time for summer break. This meant I had little time to get anything else done and the rest of my life became a disaster. (But hey, we finished school on time, so there’s that!)
I thought I’d have time to catch up once summer started, but summer activities started in quickly. Plus, I had completely exhausted myself by that point.
I no longer had any energy to cook, clean, or do basically anything else. I was fatigued all the time and wanted to do nothing but sleep, eat and cry. My sleep schedule was completely off. I was binge eating. Last year I worked very hard to lose 25 pounds and now I’ve gained 35 back with very little drive to get back on the wagon.
Does any of this sound familiar to you?
WebMD says, “A nervous breakdown (also called a mental breakdown) is a term that describes a period of extreme mental or emotional stress. The stress is so great that the person is unable to perform normal day-to-day activities.”
A couple of weeks ago I finally realized that maybe I had a problem. It took me DAYS to let go of my pride and tell my husband that I wasn’t okay. However, he misunderstood what I was trying to tell him. I had just been talking about my back hurting and then a couple of minutes later stated, “I am not doing well.” He thought I was still talking about my back and said, “I’m sorry,” gave me a kiss, rolled over, and went to sleep.
Our dog got sick the next day. Then my daughter sat in a pile of ants, got bites all over, and didn’t sleep well for several nights. Two days later my husband got sick for the weekend. On Monday we made the decision to put our dog down.
It truly felt like I was on the verge of a mental breakdown but stopped to tell myself, “This will have to wait. Being a wife and mom comes first.” I don’t know how I got through that week other than a lot of prayers.
I’m happy to say that I’m doing a little better. My struggles tend to come in waves with my cycle, and I am currently in a much happier place. Additionally, Monday night I went out with friends, and Tuesday night my husband and I went on a date.
Then on Wednesday, do you want to know what I learned drastically reduces stress? Sending the kids away.
I sent the kids to my mom’s for the day to do…well, whatever the heck I wanted. It was grand.
That being said, it’s now 1:00 am, I’m doing laundry that I need for tomorrow, and my washer just stopped working. So we’ll see how I’m doing in a few hours when my kids wake me up way too early.
But for now, these are the two things I most want you to know:
1. You’re not alone.
2. Don’t be proud like me. If you feel like you’re on the verge of a mental breakdown, please talk to someone immediately, call the doctor, and if needed don’t hesitate to call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255.
As my best friend just told me in the middle of all of this, “Remember you have to put your oxygen mask on first to keep the others alive.”
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