The Upside of things is there will always be a downside!
Once upon a time, in land far, far, away (o.k. the land is where I have always lived) I had a roommate. This roommate was the most excellent roommate. I couldn't have asked for better really. His name was Terry and he and I were great friends. Terry was a wise soul...wise beyond his years.
One year for Christmas, Terry gave me a beautiful silver ring. Engraved inside the ring was the following inscription:
This too shall pass
We lived together when I was in my mid-20's and as everyone knows (or maybe they don't) your 20's can be a hard period. Trying to figure out who you are and what you want to be in life. (Although now I know this can be something you spend your whole life doing.) Terry really helped me sort myself out and encouraged me to go after what I wanted.
He explained to me the meaning of "This too shall pass" because honestly I hadn't heard the expression before. He said: "When things are going horribly remember 'This too shall pass' but also when things are going well 'This too shall pass'. In essence what I am trying to say is; times will be good and times will be bad but they always pass."
It is a saying I have carried with me since. When I am stuck in a rut and it just doesn't seem like things are going my way I say to myself "This too shall pass" and it makes me feel much better. On the flip side when I am feeling on top of the world and like nothing will ever bring me down I am sure to remind myself "This too shall pass".
I don't do it to be a pessimist or a come across a downer.
But it's true. Life is not a constant. It has its ups and downs.
Like a roller coaster ride.
The best quote I ever heard was in the movie "Parenthood" where the Grandma talks about her husband taking her on a roller coaster when she was 19.
She says: "I always wanted to go again. You know, it was just so interesting to me that a ride could make me so frightened, so scared, so sick, so excited, and so thrilled all together! Some didn't like it. They went on the merry-go-round. That just goes around. Nothing. I like the roller coaster. You get more out of it."
And it is true! The roller coaster ride is fun.
However, after the last couple of years a couple of turns on the merry-go-round doesn't seem so bad. Even if it were just for 5 minutes. But the thing to remember is - there will always be an up and then a down - just like a roller coaster. There might be some flat spots but they are just a pit stop before the excitement and life lessons waiting to be had.
Last week, I didn't post a Manic Monday post because I was in the middle of a down. Not a down like when we first came home. I hope to never have that feeling of panic and doom again. The week prior we had a really good week! An "I'm king of the world" week. We were clicking, getting our groove on, having fun and I forgot for that moment "This too shall pass".
It isn't a bad thing I forgot. I actually think it is good I let it slip from my mind because it allowed us, more specifically me, to really start attaching. I'm not saying the attaching and bonding haven't been there. Its just we are all dancing around each other trying to figure out how this is going to work. I will leave this topic of attachment for a separate "Manic Monday" post because it really deserves its own post.
There are certainly things I want to share and it is why I have been writing about my experiences with PADS. However, there are times, feelings and thoughts which just can't be shared. I started out writing these 'Manic' posts because I felt alone and wanted to see if anyone else could identify with me. Thankfully, I am not alone, I don't wish anyone else to feel this way but if you do feel it and are experiencing it, it's good to know there are people who 'get it'.
But there is a young son involved and I don't ever want him to read these posts some day in the future and think "I did this to my mom". "I made her feel this way". In no way is this true. It was the circumstances leading up to him coming home which let to these events. I know this. He must know this too.
So, last week, I had a couple of bad days. As I have already said not as bad as when we first got home, but definitely down days. This is too be expected. PADS or PPD doesn't go away overnight. It takes time. On average it can take about 4 months all the way through to a year to feel fully like yourself again, (According to some reading I have been doing on the topic) to feel the panic and overwhelmingness of it all dissipate.
Some say wait until 6 months to evaluate anything in your new family - like here. I think she is bang on. I think it could take longer for some but certainly don't evaluate anything in the first couple of months home.
I chose to keep the details to myself on the off chance I happened to sit at my computer and spew the contents of mind and hit enter. I know I could remove the post if I felt it was too much but it is the internet after all and "What happens on the internet stays on the internet". It's not like it was so bad I couldn't write about it but in the heat of moment, like in an arguement, things can be said that later would bring regret.
The thing to remember is - The ups and downs are normal.
They do not mean you aren't healing, growing, gaining...you are doing the work. It is really hard work.
The ups and downs will be there...like a roller coaster.
This too shall pass!