Saturday, January 14, 2006

Introspective Moment

I've been thinking.

Dangerous, I know, but bear with me. My last psych appointment has been weighing on my mind and I know it was big.

I'm still having anxiety problems, and I'm sure that I'll be dealing with this stupid disorder the rest of my natural life. I know I'll be prone to depression and stressing out and all that fun stuff that anxiety can do to a person. I'm not resigned to it, but still dealing with that hungry animal and trying not to cut it's leash too short.

During pregnancies my skin gets ultra sensitive. A simple caress actually 'hurts' and I don't know how else to explain it. I dislike being touched or hugged or anything, and need to process things differently. Something I noticed recently was that when I'm super-stressed I feel the same way. I noticed it when after a particularly long day, I was feeling pretty frazzled and Juliana (sweet & loving girl that she is) tried to give me hugs. And all I could do was panic and lift my hands (my hands get the most sensitive) and close my eyes, feeling like I was going to cry. "Please honey, Mommy needs some space. Please honey please hug me later Mommy can't I'm sorry I can't" and she of course was hurt until I literally shut myself down and gave up. I knew that if she got her hug I could sit in the dark alone for a few minutes and detox. Ugh just thinking about this is making my palms all tingly. I got like this when I was telling my shrink about it.

Seems that it's "my way" of saying "I need space" and that I'm probably spending too much time with the kids. I don't ask for enough help, I don't leave the house enough, I don't go out and socialize away from the kids enough. I'm too inclusive when it comes to the kids and "hyper sensitive" to Manny being the one who's working so that I can stay home with the kids. I feel like since I'm not the one getting a name on a paycheck, and he's working 2 jobs so that we don't have to pay a daycare, I shouldn't ask him to watch the kids so that I can go out. He socializes less than I do, but he's out there talking to adults all day. He gets to travel for his job. He spends the majority of his day with even talking to a child while I'm here 24/7 with three of them.

Needing to be away from them doesn't mean that I love them any less. It just means I'm not taking care of my Social Self as well as I should. And this ultra sensitivity to my skin when I've had TOO MUCH time with the kids and when I've been stressed is my body's way of trying to distance itself a bit before I go absolutely insane. My body and brain recognize it even if I don't see it consciously.

How do you tell a mother she spends too much time with her own kids? You don't. If you're a good shrink (and mine is) she lets you figure it out for yourself.

So to deal with the guilt that shouldn't be guilt... and admit that I need to get away is what I think I'm having some trouble with. I admit that when I do manage to get out without the girls it feels good, but I need more than just grocery shopping and running errands. That's not social, that's still taking care of my family and attaches me at the hip to my girls. So I need to get out and be a woman socializing, not just a mom getting out of the house.

1 comment:

Allie D. said...

Yes yes yes!! Get out, Jess! If only for a little while. I spent 4 years cooped up in the house with my little family and I think it about damn near killed me. I got to a point once where when I did leave the house without my family, I would have guilt so deep that it would almost send me into a panic. Then I started back to school again last year and it all changed. I am starting to rebuild my social life for the first time after moving to Washington back in 1999. This is what happens when you move in with a hermit who doesn't require a social life. It hurts to stifle yourself that way. Even if you make time to just go to a movie, that is time well spent.

You work so hard. Sure, you don't want to discount Manny's efforts, but you have a job too. A very demanding, unending one that doesn't have the type of structure that allows you to take regular breaks and days off. You need to give yourself that time, because you and your entire family will feel the benefits from it!