Despite my best intentions it’s nearly a week since I last wrote here and I am definitely noticing the effects. It’s weird – when I write here I feel so bored with myself and my incessant whining about nothing that’s all that important, just an endless litany of first-world problems, but when I stop! When I stop writing for a couple of days it’s just fine. But when I hit around a five-day gap then the anxiety starts to creep back in, a nameless seeping dread that feels like it’s spreading through my whole body, and weaving tendrils through my brain.

Last night I felt so horribly anxious and afraid. There were identifiable reasons to point to, but they weren’t really the true cause. I was just due to have a bit of an anxiety attack because I hadn’t checked in with myself and syphoned off the excess emotion of the week at any point.

And writing here, regardless of how pointless or whiny or whatever it sometimes seems to me, just seems to work like that. That’s pretty good – I mean it’s a bit time-consuming and requires a modicum of discipline or whatever, but it works and it’s cheap and it doesn’t involve putting any extra medication into my body.

So the “things” that have been going on and were contributing to anxiety spikes yesterday:

  • House. I called in on the next-door neighbours who appealed our planning permission last Wednesday evening. I can’t believe I mustered up the internal wherewithal to do that. I mean, I hate talking to people I don’t really know even about something as innocuous as the weather, let alone walking – uninvited – into a situation that’s already pretty conflict laden.
    Now we’re waiting for them to respond to the potential offer of various things that might address their concerns so that they will withdraw their appeal.
    I don’t know if they’re going to go for it or not. I don’t even fully know if I want them to! I know, that’s kind of a weird thing to say, but if they do go for the plan of working out some compromise it’s going to mean dealing with them and solicitors and agreements and all that jazz.
    Meanwhile we’re just playing a bit of a waiting game where they will or won’t contact us at any point over the next couple of days. It’s all a bit waiting for the quantum waveform to collapse and we can’t directly observe anything ourselves. I guess we’re just Wigner’s Friends.
  •  Twin 1 is sick. Not terribly sick or anything like that, but he’s got a temperature and a throwing up and a sore throat. All dealable with. Until he mentioned a sore neck and was unable to roll it from side to side and developed a (mild) viral rash and my brain leapt quick as a flash to meningitis, even though I kind of knew it wasn’t quite “there”. You just never want to even take 1 tenth of nth of a fraction of a percent of chance when it comes to your own kids, regardless of how foolish and panicked it might make you look to healthcare professionals.
    I’m pretty lucky because I can just text my parents for a quick check-in and they’ll quickly give my advice about whether to get to a doctor or just keep watching for a while.
    But, of course, it meant I was awake for a lot of last night with hyper-vigilance.
  • A friend’s parent passed last night. She’s been long-term ill with only one possible result for a few years now, but the last week saw a rapid decline and she finally passed last night.
    And so, for me (and it’s always about me), this triggered the death-fear that’s never all that far beneath the surface anyway. I was feeling pretty conscious of the fragility of human life as it was these last few days, and this was really just an extra drop to move the line of death-anxiety past what I can usually tolerate.
    Weirdly even the wedding we attended on Friday summoned these same emotions in me. I know, right?! But the speeches talked about watching the bride and groom grow through so many different stages of their lives and I just kept thinking about how I can only hope to be so lucky to reach that point with my children and to still be there for them and to be granted the gift of watching them grow – if I live and they live. You see what I mean about being obsessed with the fragility of life? It all feels like it is so tenuous and could be ripped away at any point.

There’s more, I’m sure there’s more. I promise to come back tomorrow and keep working through it as best I can.