I’m Not Fine, and I Know It

As if it weren’t already fairly obvious with the lack of posts, I’m still treading water over here. I feel like I don’t know who I am or what I’m doing most of the time. But I’ve taken steps to get myself together. I’m seeing a psychiatrist and taking anti-depressants to address my negative thinking and general melancholy. I know that no drug is going to “fix” my thinking totally. It’s something I will have to be more vigilant about. The point is that I’m trying. That’s all anyone can ask.

Because these should be some of the happiest moments of my life. My son is growing and thriving. My career is steady, and I think pretty stable. I have a roof over my head, gas in my car, food in my belly, etc. There’s nothing to be so damn sad about. With no environmental factors to really contribute to my malaise, this is definitely a mental health issue. And I’m doing my best to treat it. My son deserves to have me completely present with him. Not a million miles away thrashing in the waves of my negative head space.

I worry about the future. I think about what I could have done differently in the past. Over and over I see myself as I must have appeared in my mother’s eyes. And I see myself as my mother- doing what she did. Because her 30s are when I was actually paying attention. Watching her work through her days. Deal with her own depression. Her own image and body issues. And now I’m the same age she was when I was really capable to seeing her. And I wish I could ask her a lot of questions. Some of them physical. “Why did you have a hysterectomy in your 30s? Should I worry about this change to my body? Is it something you experienced at my age?”

Others about raising Gibson. “When did I walk? When did I start talking? Is he starting sooner or later than me? Is he taller than I was? Is he growing normally? Am I doing the right things?”

Sometimes I wish I could talk to her about marriage. I know she wasn’t a shining example of how to make them work. But it’s always nice to have someone who is definitely in your corner giving you advice. Even if you choose to ignore it. Every once in a while I get this feeling of having no back up. I mean, there’s no safety net in life. No one who can make everything okay. But for a while, when you’re a kid, your parents are all powerful. And even though you know they can’t really wave a magic wand, you just like knowing that they are still in your world. Maybe it’s just the nostalgia factor. I don’t know.

Anyway, I’m not fine. But I’m better than I was. I’m adrift, and I know it. I’m overly emotional, and I know it. I’m certainly not a perfect wife or parent everyday, and I know it.

But then there are days when you take your son to the beach for the first time, and you see him try to dive in headfirst to reach the other kids. He’s fearless. He’s happy. He’s free. And he seems uncontaminated by my issues. The rest of my life may show signs of my fears and doubts and hangups. But Gibs is perfect. I know he won’t always be this uncomplicated. I know that a cuddle and a song won’t be able to fix his tears down the road. But right now, he’s unburdened. So we must be doing something right.

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