I’ve been quiet for a long time, scared to put pen to paper and start writing again; scared of what will come out of me.I’m not the person I thought I was, I don’t have the capability or compassion that I once prided myself on and if I’m honest I’ve felt totally and utterly lost; and I’m so sad so bone shatteringly sad.

My mother in law died last year, suddenly and unexpectedly, there was just no time, no time to prepare for anything. It’s not just as simple as that, it’s not just a grieving process there’s more. She left behind two sons who both have a disability, sons who are now our responsibility. I knew this day would come but I didn’t expect it yet, none of us did, least of all her. Cancer is a truly horrific disease, my mother in law had no symptoms and by the time she did it was too late. Three weeks was all we had. Since she died I’ve been afraid; afraid of my own body and what’s going on inside of it. A breast lump in January which thankfully was just a cyst has done little to quell my anxiety.

Suddenly now there are decisions, choices, children who are experiencing death for the first time and a husband who is just silent. A house that was once full of colour now seems grey. For a while I am strong and brave, I wipe the tears, I push for counselling, to find another outlet when he finds it too hard to talk. Secretly I’m starting to drown; drown under the guilt that I don’t want to be a full time carer, that I don’t want to give up the job I’ve only just gone back to. That I don’t want my children’s lives to be impacted in the way that my husbands was. I know I’m depressed, I know that I’m anxious and I know that I need help, but voicing how I feel is hard. I know the judgement that comes with saying everything out loud; close friends who I’ve told haven’t understood, family members haven’t understood. I just can’t bear to say the words to another person and see the judgement in their face and hear it in their voice. I don’t need to hear it from another person because the voice in my head is doing it on repeat 24 7.  I’ve never slept well but now I sleep less and less, I’m irritable yet outwardly pretending I’m fine. If I’m honest I find it difficult to even look in the mirror. I’m not the good and decent person I thought I was.

I’ve always been a planner, super organised, but I can’t do that anymore, I have to live one day at a time. I don’t know what  the future holds, life is uncertain and so am I. I’ve been through an identity crisis before, the whole am I just mummy; but that just doesn’t compare. They say that tough times are when you see what you are made of; If that’s true then it’s no wonder I’m struggling to look in the mirror.


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