Friday Focus 14/08/20 – Frazzled

I’m feeling quite frazzled this week. It’s been one of those weeks where everything just feels too much. The heat; trying to juggle work, looking after the children, doing housework, keeping on top of church commitments; never quite managing to get enough sleep; struggling with grief and missing Jessica. Grief has been overwhelming at times this week. I miss that little girl of mine so very much. Having to live my life without Jessica has felt utterly unbearable this week.

 

The word frazzled in purple with lightning bolts in the middle of the letters

 

Sometimes when I’m struggling, I write about how I feel and sometimes I find it easier to draw a picture to illustrate it. I drew the picture below earlier this week, when I was having a particularly bad day and feeling overwhelmed and alone. I tend to try and keep my social media feed fairly positive, with my daily gratitude photo, but it was one of those days when I’d had enough of trying to put on a brave face and so I shared the picture.

 

A drawing of me walking across a fraying tightrope, balancing a pole with children on one side and work, church and home items on the other. There is a child-sized net under the tightrope and below it a lake with the words 'overwhelm', 'grief', 'fear', 'despair', 'hopelessness', 'rage' and 'guilt'. There are little covid viruses in the lake and another one about to cut the rope. My husband is working on one side of the tightrope oblivious to me in the middle and Jessica is on the other side

 

The responses from my friends and family made me realise that I wasn’t quite so alone after all. I miss being able to see them, but it was a reminder that even though we can’t meet up, they are still there. I re-drew the picture later that day to reflect that.

 

A drawing of me walking across a fraying tightrope, balancing a pole with children on one side and work, church and home items on the other. There is a child-sized net under the tightrope and below it are people on surfboards holding up a big cushion marked 'love', 'support', 'talking', 'empathy'. They are surfing the waves of a lake with the words 'overwhelm', 'grief', 'fear', 'despair', 'hopelessness', 'rage' and 'guilt'. There are little covid viruses in the lake and another one about to cut the rope. My husband walking across the rope to help me and Jessica is holding up the other side of the rope

 

I joined in with an online support group this week for parents who have lost a school-aged child. I’m not sure whether I found it helpful or not really, but it was a safe space to be able to talk about Jessica and about my grief with other parents who understand.

 

It’s been a tough week on the whole. It’s a tough time of year to be honest – the summer holidays with all the memories of the fun we used to have with Jessica; the start of a new school year approaching and Jessica’s ninth birthday coming up too. Some days I just have to ride the storm as best I can. I’ll get through it.

 

 

Things that have made me smile this week

  • Watching Thomas playing with Sophie’s dress-up dolls.

 

Thomas playing with dress-up dolls in the tuff tray

 

  • Sophie’s delight at getting some pre-loved LOL dolls to add to her collection.

 

  • Getting my old birth pool out in the garden and sitting in it with hubby and the children.

 

Me, hubby, Sophie and Thomas in the birth pool in the garden

 

  • Cooling down in the paddling pool.

 

  • Enjoying the feel of the rain on my face.

 

  • Sophie running outside to go and splash in the rain.

 

Sophie splashing in puddles in the garden in the rain

 

  • An unexpected phone call from an old uni friend.

 

  • Thomas running along the sofa, throwing himself face-down on the cushions and then looking up at me with the biggest grin and saying “your turn!”

 

Word of the Week linky

10 thoughts on “Friday Focus 14/08/20 – Frazzled

  1. I saw your pictures on Facebook, my heart went out to you on the first one, but melted on the second. I’m glad you realise you have love and support. It’s so difficult for someone who hasn’t lost a child to fully understand what you are going through, but It’s not difficult to understand how much it must really hurt, always. I’m glad you got the pool out to enjoy, I think a big cool down was definitely needed in a lot of places this week. And I love that Sophie went out to dance in the rain. Thomas is getting cuter every day, and Jessica will always be a part of your life, through pain and through laughter. xx

    1. Thank you Anne. It does help having that love and support. It has been such a tough week – being without Jessica is hard, but some days are harder than others. Sophie and Thomas do give me lots of reasons to smile though x

  2. Oh no! Sending hugs. It sounds like a rough week. The first picture is so sad but the 2nd one did make me smile knowing you have the support from your family and friends.
    I hope the online support group does help.
    What a great use for your birth pool. I think we could have done with one this past week. x

    1. Thank you Kim, having the support from family and friends does help. The birth pool was lovely in all the heat!

  3. I admire your honesty about how you are feeling. Sending hugs, which seems not enough. Your use of a drawing to express yourself is perfect. I was glad to see the change around in the second. It has been hot. Good use for your birthing pool. Can’t help at chuckling at Thomas’s antics and Sophie enjoying the rain. Hope you have a good weekend. #wotw

    1. Thank you Cheryl. Drawing it out helped and it does help to know that there is the support out there even if I’m not always aware of it. Thomas and Sophie do make me smile. It was lovely to see Sophie enjoying the rain. Hope you are having a good weekend.

  4. those drawings say so much more than 1000 words can, and I am so sorry you are feeling like this. You have every right to feel this way and I think sometimes part of the trying to heal process is accepting that the hurt and pain will never truly go away as you can never forget Jessica and will always wonder what she would be doing, how she would be etc.
    I am glad you got to draw picture two that shows your support network, but still will not lessen your pain.

    1. Thank you Elaine. I think you’re right that often you just need to accept the feelings and allow them to come as they need to – the second drawing was my way of showing that the struggle is still there but also illustrating that the support network is there too.

  5. I’m so glad you have such a wonderful support system around you Louise! Often the last thing we want to do when feeling so overwhelmed is talk, hiding away just seems so much easier. This just shows how important it is to share the bad days as well as the good. It always, always helps to open up! I hope you are having a more manageable week 🙂 #WotW

    1. Thank you Emma. It is important to be honest and I did feel better for opening up about it. This week has been more manageable, thank you.

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