It’s been so wonderful to finally feel like ‘me’ again – but it brings its own challenges. I’m so grateful and excited to feel like my normal, hectic self that I keep wanting to run before I’m really walking. There’s so much I want to do to make up for this year – I want to get some extra research projects on the go to make up for the drop I’ve had academically, I want to start serving again in my community, I want to dig in and find new ways to help and lend my hands and change the things I want to change. It’s so good to care about things again – I really do think that for me, it’s apathy that brought me closest to the edge. It was losing the pulse of caring that drives my day to day life, that left me so incredibly bereft and disconnected, and now it’s back, I’m like a child at the beach, running into the waves before checking the depth or the current, high on excitement and flushed from the sun. I want my old drive, my old self, my old skin back. I want to move on from this year so desperately, to leave it behind and fix my eyes on the future, and not look back. I want to feel connected and capable, involved and interested.
But I know that I’ve got to tread carefully, and really be careful about what I take on. If I want to keep the even keel and stave off a relapse, I’ve got to think carefully, and not just jump at a hundred oppurtunities before really thinking about what my abilities are. It’s hard – it’s like I’m straining at the bit, against a leash, tensed and waiting for a starting pistol to go – proving once again that I am not someone who can sit still and just ‘be’. It’s as though after months of having engines that won’t start up, all the pistons have kicked into action at once and are trying to make up for lost time. It’s like my eyes have opened and just want to capture all the colours I’ve blanked out for so long, and like a camera, I’m flashing all over the place (camera flashing, that is – not the other sort!)
I’m really excited this week as I’ve had an email back from one of the obstetricians I was placed under about doing an extra project in her field, which is foeto-maternal medicine (in a nutshell, problems with mums to be that are dangerous for the baby, and problems babies in the womb have that can be dangerous for the mothers, as well as to the babies themselves), and then I had a meeting with someone from the medical school about setting up a mentoring scheme for students lower down the curriculum (off the back of some one-to-one tutoring I did earlier in the year) – and both are things I’m passionate about, and want to do well at. I’m pretty confident I can do both of these – and also, that if they did prove too much, both are things I can either scale back or drop if I needed to, but I do need to be watchful about overloading on busy-ness. I LOVE organising things and juggling people and tasks – there is literally nothing I love more than writing a list of what needs doing, and DOING IT. I love it. I’ve not been that capable of it for the last year, and now, it’s like something inside me has woken up and is all ready to start alphabetising all over the show, itemising as though its life depended on it. I need to be careful.
There’s another aspect to this too – as usual, I was in counselling again yesterday. It’s been a rough few weeks, and for the first time yesterday, I really felt that L didn’t really understand where I’m coming from. She’s fairly insistent that my ‘tendancy to busyness’ comes from some deep seated need for approval (ahh, middle child syndrome rears its head again)- and though I recognise that there is probably an element of that, a lot of it doesn’t – I just genuinely like to help and I like being busy, and when I don’t like something, I try and fix it. Which apparently is also not too healthy – the trap of ‘caring too much’ – I do sometimes think I can’t bloody win – and that if I dilute all of these things down too much, yes, I might be more ‘textbook healthy’ but I’d also be 2D, I’d also not be me at all. It’s a fine line, between being busy but not too busy, still but not sloth, caring but not too caring, self aware but not self absorbed. It makes you wonder how any of us manage to even remotely lead normal lives. It makes you wonder, what normal is, anyway, apart from just managing to get through the day without losing yourself in the process.
So – I’m counting on you, readers, to stop me going overboard with stuff. xxchar.