Saturday, July 02, 2011

friday forte: not going it alone

Date night
admitting defeat

I'm stubborn.
I'm also quite capable, independent and resourceful.
I am strong and a good learner.
I know when to rely on others, when to get the job done myself, and hopefully when to call it quits and call in the experts. Sometimes the latter takes a while. It's not a good feeling to admit defeat but it's a necessary and grown up thing to do. That's why I've finally called it quits with the mental gridlock inside my own head and called in the experts.

Date night
panic sets in

A couple of weeks ago, Wee Guy and I visited the Vancouver Art Gallery for our semi-regular Date Night. After a high speed march through the Surrealist exhibit (taking cultural events at child-speed eases the visit) we 'did' the rest of the building. Currently, VAG is hosting an exhibit of local artist, Ken Lum's work. It's well worth a visit, with thought-provoking large scale installations on view. One of these is his mirror maze, like the PNE version or far more disorienting ... and with a message. Etched into the mirrors of Lum's maze are the 12 clinical symptoms of depression - I have no friends, I am a failure, I feel alone in the world, and so on; statements I am really familiar with. Progress through the maze is slow and anxious - there is no clear path out and the mirror images are deceiving. The Wee Guy got quite panicked when he realised he couldn't march straight through so I took his hand, calmed him down and showed him that with care and concentration, it was possible to leave the maze.

Date night
which way now???

And that's what I'm hoping for, and for his sake too. I'm dealing with being 'stuck'; of being left alone to 'cure myself'; the bitterness of realising the one person who is a root cause, who should be there for me, is unwilling or incapable of stepping up to the plate for me; of feeling that there is no one in my corner to catch me if I fall. It's a lot to deal with alone and then have to put the 'mum' smile back on. Meeting with a therapist for my own misery is for my son's benefit as well as my own. It's no fun having a mum who drifts off into her own unhappiness, is unable to move forward, isn't present for her child - this isn't what childhood is about, this isn't what mothering is about either.  While I might be admitting defeat in my own capabilities, I hope I can show my Wee Guy that seeking help is a strong thing to do, that sometimes we all need another pair of hands, another pair of eyes, a soul in our corner when we've exhausted all other routes.

So - my name is Amanda. I am in therapy.

Date night
we can do this, together
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