Monday 8th March was back to school, again! This gave me a chance to reflect, on what has been a very long few months! I wanted to think about what has been good, bad and frankly ugly during this time! 

March 16th 2020 was the beginning of what has been an unprecedented time for many. With extreme pressure on our NHS and saw a blurring of roles at home, with parents taking on the role of teacher and friend, in addition to parenting. This was often whilst also having to work.

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The fall out on our Mental Health is yet unknown, however I personally expect it to be significant.

I thought I would share what the last year has looked like for us, some of it anyway. First I want to apologise.

The is here to support those of us who live with people with Mental Health Illness and needs. It can be tough at times and many of us become ill with depression or anxiety as a result.

I want to apologise that during this period I have been quiet, silent and absent.

Sometimes we must take care of our own, we cannot be everything to everyone and in order to take care of those we love we have to ensure our own cup is kept full.

I didn’t have the capacity to keep up with The RockPool, work full time, be a parent to Patrick (who is now 7!) and be the rock in our home. I would have cracked and I know it’s okay to say “I’ve had enough, I can’t do anymore” and that it’s okay to say “No” when you have to look inward.

So, whist I am sorry I haven’t been around, I would like to think I have led by example and shown that it is okay to say “not today, I have to refill my cup”.

I was filled with joy this morning when all the children went back to school. As in many other households the balance in our home has been, well frankly there has not been any balance. It’s been survival, sometimes we won and sometimes we lost, but mostly we hung on by our fingernails.

It has NOT been easy keeping a child occupied, happy and healthy for weeks on end when they are not seeing their friends and as a parent you have no respite.

This has definitely led to parenting fatigue, I wonder if there is such a thing for the children, ‘childing fatigue’ perhaps.

Our roles should not come together as much as they have over the past year, there should be clear divides. Divides between parent and child, between teacher and pupil, between husband and wife and between work and home. All of a sudden, all those divides went and there was no hug of friendship to help pick you up, only virtual ones and they became tiresome after a while. No one had anything to talk about.

The things which define us and set us free went for a time. Only now are we slowly seeing the green roots of them returning.

For some its spontaneity for others it’s the ability to makes plans. Our freedom, the control over our own lives.

Just that ability to take back control of our own lives will lead to a significant mindset shift and lighten the load.

I look back and I wonder, how did I get through? I am not going to share the details of the past year, that would not be fair to my family. What I will say is that the impact on Mental Health in our home has been significant, we had our moments of crisis and I have learnt so much about myself, my family and about how we interact with eachother. If we can leave behind the challenging times and come out with the lessons we have learnt I believe we will be the stronger for it. I know I am.

Meditation has been my saviour; I can honestly say that without my Meditation and my Pranic Healing Practice I would have been in a very different place. We all have our coping mechanisms and that has been mine.

It’s a practice I will come out of this crisis with and something I will continue to grow and develop.

I enjoyed my bike rides during the summer months, but the winter lockdown was long and hard. No light and with shorter days I wasn’t able to get out on my bike, to feel that sense of freedom. I cherished the silence 6am brings on a summer morning, I’m looking forward to brining that back into my life. I’ve learnt to enjoy the simple pleasures. 

Over the coming months I am going to focus on repair. I want to keep the things I have learnt and value and leave behind the bits which don’t serve me. I need to find my way to make sense of the difficulties we have all experienced during this time so that I can come out feeling like that year was not wasted, that it stood for something.

If for nothing else, I want to look back in love upon the community which came together in the town where I live. The people who created charities to feed the NHS and the vulnerable, the volunteers who have setup vaccination centres and the joy in valuing the simple things in life, like a knowing smile as you pass someone on the street. The understanding of a shared experience.

Is there anything you would like to share or reflect upon, we would love to hear from you.

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