So, my hubby works offshore and is generally gone for at least two weeks at a time, this has been our way of life for years now and I’m still not used to it, and this past 16 months with a new addition to the family it has been even harder.
I know my two weeks doesn’t come close to ladies whose partners or in the forces etc but to me this is my reality and it’s bloody hard.
I have always suffered with anxiety, but only since having my little boy have I experienced terrible PNA, I remember when my hubby was due to go away for the first time since having bub and I was a wreck, I held it in until I couldn’t any longer. I had a sickly pregnancy and was in and out of hospital with the risk of having to be c-sectioned at 34 weeks. In the end i was just short of 37 weeks and having spent days being pumped full of all sorts of drugs and having nil by mouth just incase, failed induction and cannulas in both hands, arms and one foot, I finally ended up needing a c section and our little girl was soon to arrive (that’s right a little girl, we had been told bub was a girl), so in the midst of all this mess I remembering looking at my hubby when I was led in the theatre and crying I don’t want to die, and trying to process everything that had happened to then be told it was a boy. We were in complete shock, but thrilled, we had no name for the little dude though. My postnatal experience was even more horrid and thinking about it makes me sad, and angry, and really anxious so I’m just going to skim past it, but know that having gone though all this led to my breaking point when hubby went away for the first time.
His job sometimes allows him to stay at local hotels and fly out of our local airport, his two week trip was coming to an end, i was counting them down desperately, and then the night before he was due Home he called to say he was being delayed and had to stay for a few more days. I literally broke down on the phone to him, I couldn’t see for tears, I could hardly breathe, I was shaking and was in the middle of an attack. Luckily hubby was local and came home in a taxi because he was worried, I crumbled to the floor almost bereft, and he picked up our little one and told me to go to bed and he would sleep at home that night and go back early in the am (bearing in mind his check ins are usually 5-6am), he did the night feeds and nursed bub so I could catch up on sleep and calm down. I to this day feel like he saved me that night, I don’t know what would have happened if he hadn’t been able to pop home.
Since then I’ve been put on medication to help and I’m dealing with it on a daily basis, I still struggle to go out sometimes and I haven’t been to any play groups etc. When hubby goes away the weeks are fine, I work part time and bub goes to nursery then we have a couple of days together before the weekend hits us, and this is when I struggle.
I know it’s silly and I should just go out and do whatever and not worry, but I can’t, the weekends are full of families all doing nice things together, and I feel like a single Mum with no friends or family (my family live 250 miles away). I always thought having children would help me make lots of new friends but instead it has just shown how anti social someone can be when they suffer from anxiety.
It also doesn’t help that I am a terrible scaredy cat, I literally jump at my own shadow and therefore struggle with being alone at nights sometimes. If you looked up a hot mess in the dictionary you would find a picture of me. I feel guilty about my entire mummy persona and try not to show too much of my anxiety to the bub so he doesn’t learn from me, my wish for him is freedom, freedom to go out and explore, freedom to be himself without worrying about what other people think, freedom to not sweat the small stuff/big stuff/in between stuff.
The nights can be so hard, post 7pm and suddenly you have no one to talk to or just be quiet with. But soon the hubby will be back and we’ll fall back into our little bubble for another couple of weeks, until then I’m listening to every podcast of Alison Perry, and watching every series I can on Netflix.
P.S. my hat truly goes off to single mums and dads out there, you are unsung heroes.
If you struggle like I do, I can only send you a virtual hug and say the light will shine through (for some, maybe after a trip to the Docs) xx