Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Just a little left...

It's a strange thing, this "grinding to a halt" business. I had certainly planned it that way but when it happened it still felt like a shock to the system.

The lead-up to Christmas was actually quite calm, if constant. My little 'un finished kindergarten and we both said a number of emotional farewells. I finished work for twelve months and opted to slink out the side door than go out with a bang. Christmas shopping was completed and wrapped. Reverb13 came to an end for another year.

Then all that was left to do was slow down and savour the festive season.

And get sick. My littlie brought home a virus from her last days at kinder, which my compromised immune system could not quite resist. Thankfully, she bounced back reasonably quickly. I'm still hacking and snorting and reaching for the asthma pump at all hours.


It's not all bad. There have been naps. There have been gentle catch-ups with friends here and there. There has been puttering, tidying, reading, watching DVDs.

But there's also been the usual gremlins that rear their heads when I am unwell and off my game. The ones that nag me that my house is a mess, that I have a stack of unanswered emails in my inbox, that I am losing control over everything... all of which pretty much makes me a loser (a feeling which is so conducive to healing, I might add).

In my more contemplative moments, I see that it has pretty much always been this way for me: bursts of activity followed by a complete void, often accompanied by illness. I'm getting better at pacing myself and evening things out, as well as harnessing the positive aspects of my natural/nurtured inclinations.

The void still puzzles me though. It reminds me of when I was in school and university and all my energies were focussed on finishing exams and handing in essays and performing in ballet concerts or packing up to leave college or amping up the hours at my Summer job. It was hard not to daydream about all the things I would and wouldn't do once the grind was behind me. But then, when it arrived, I felt at a complete loss to know what to do with myself. Part of this was, perhaps, the anti-climax of it all. Part of it would also likely have been the clunkiness that comes with being forced to change gears all of a sudden. What happens to all that leftover adrenaline? Queue illness, I guess.

But the other thing I am wondering is about space. Specifically psychical space. Namely, space for me.

I find it curious that I have more time on my hands than I have in a long time but don't feel like doing any of the things I usually enjoy (e.g. reading, journalling, blogging, making plans, catching up with friends). In fact, I feel a distinct aversion to all of these things even though these are the ways I usually connect with my self.

Maybe it's because I'm more depleted than I'd generally give myself credit for. Maybe it's just the natural adjustment that comes from being catapulted out of the routine we have all been following for such a long time. Maybe it's also the reality that being seven months pregnant makes pretty much everything harder than usual (even resting!). Maybe it's all the unknowns that the new year holds. Maybe I am just not spectacularly good at sitting still and enjoying a fallow creative time for what it is.

And it's likely a bit all of the above... and all part of life's ebb and flow.

I just wish it didn't feel like there is not a whole lot of me left.

I'm curious to know if you can relate to this! What sorts of things to you do to connect with your self when you're feeling "less than"?


  1. I think we all go through periods like this and I can definitely relate to the feeling that there's "not a whole lot of me left". It seems to be the natural ebb and flow for me too. I'm trying to get better at rolling with it but it can be so frustrating. Be kind to yourself, take the time you need and forget about what you should or shouldn't be doing. Happy New Year. x

  2. I definitely get like this, and I think I felt it harder when I was pregnant. Even evoking the feeling of it to type this comment makes me feel yuck! Sometimes I go with it. I lie on the couch, and just feel yuck, knowing that it's temporary. Sometimes I just sit outside for a while and let the thoughts drift in and out. Sometimes I get dolled up and go out for a coffee and a wander. Company optional (or not if I've got the kids), sometimes just a location change will help shift my mindset (even though I love being home). (Although the last one is probably not so helpful if you're unwell.) I hope you are are feeling better soon. Love to you (and happy New Year) xxx

  3. I've been reminiscing lately about my old habits of hard work/activities until I got sick from the stress of overwork. Once I made the connection and stopped doing so much, I found myself feeling more balanced and less sick. It's not easy to implement good, healthy new habits, but I couldn't go back to the way I was if I wanted to!
    I am glad to see you working bit by bot to implement good habits of SELF CARE in your life Kat and I see the progress you are making. It may not feel like you are making progress, but reading your blog, I can see a difference! =-)
    A very Happy New Year to you in 2014 and to your growing family!!

  4. I have meant to do so much in the last two weeks and instead I've done so little. No writing. No reading. No work of mention. I've been sick, my mom has been sick and now my husband is sick. I feel like I'm just floating when I want to be swimming. I think, though, this is where I am supposed to be.