Sometimes there is a sadness, an emptiness inside that I look to fill with, something. Initially it was food. I ate like each bite was to be my last and even when I was uncomfortably full, the kind of full when you wake up the next day and your body is saying ‘please no more’ but the emptiness is stronger and so more eating.
Thankfully that phase ended, my body won. Food wasn’t the answer anymore, actually it never was. So then came activities I guess, an attitude of focus and let’s get this life game back on track. Fake it till you make it. I am beginning to make it, a shift is taking place and I am feeling part of my world rather than apart and outside it. I am glad because standing apart and watching your life is an uncomfortable feeling, helps give you some perspective though.
I’m lucky. I have amazing friends and family who love and look out for me. They have helped turn back the waves of depression and overwhelm that have threatened to take me persistently over (or under) the last few months. A friend recently told me there are three major moments in life, shifts really, that cause extreme disruption to a person mentally and physically
- Breaking up in a relationship
- New job
I have had all three happen simultaneously, her wise words which were and continue to be so helpful ‘you are doing really well, be kind to yourself’. That doesn’t mean get that M and S chocolate fudge cake which is the biggest hug in edible form (ahem) and eat it all to ‘treat’ yourself. It means when you feel low don’t beat yourself up, feel low for a little while, acknowledge why and then move on to doing something to pick you up. A long hot bath, funny film, see friends or family, even exercise – yep you almost definitely won’t feel like it but it is so effective.
Most of the time when feeling low I just wanted to be left alone and lie still, but that was the depression’s desire, a little part of me would say go for a walk, now go and see mummy or call someone. Or answer that call and have a conversation. It is easy to feel lonely and isolated, it’s even easier to exacerbate that feeling by our own actions. Cutting people off, choosing to turn down invites for the false comfort of my sofa and a bag of popcorn (that posh one with the salt and sweet mix).
I am actively forcing myself now to say no to my sofa, as much as I love it and the comfort its cushiony goodness and proximity to the TV gives me. I moved essentially to enhance my life and where possible that of others. I moved back to see if my relationship had a future, it didn’t and at my core I am grateful for that knowledge. That wisdom doesn’t stop the disappointment and hurt, but pragmatic as I try to be I am taking my learning from this experience. I am giving myself time, I am not rushing into dating and I am not going to over compromise just so I can have a man.
I want to be married and have a family but I realise not at any cost or on any terms. Which leads to my new job and business opportunities. It’s funny, in that way life can be, when I came back I thought I was going into this new job which was loads of money and finally the possibility of flying business class when travelling for work. The thing is I had, had a conversation with God before leaving Ghana and told God what I wanted out of this move. God listens to the core of your request not the surface level stuff we think we want.
So the loadsa money job fell through and behind it came my current job. Which, though when I said yes, I didn’t fully comprehend that it so completely fulfils my request to God. It’s like my Mary Poppins list in career developing form.
Also my own business interests are starting to bud as well, so life is starting to reflect the image of life I had started to form when I decided to make my move.
I am definitely on my way to happy. The life changes happening in my sisters lives is bringing us closer. The birth of my niece has been like some magic restorative medicine. I’m learning or re-learning that life has a way of working out, perhaps not in the way I had pictured or planned it, but it works out.
If you are having one of these transitional, transformational, challenging times share your story, open up your feelings and let them out. Keeping them inside is not good or healthy for you and when you share it and hear responses from people who really love and care about you, you realise they appear bigger or are maladjustments of the truth of the situation. You are not alone and you are doing great. I’m off now to go and get love and hugs from my Godson, be well and have a great day! Drop me a line if you want to share your story, happy to listen.