Lately, I have become much more aware of the stress I have been under since the beginning of the year. The Palinode and I have had to face a couple of fairly overwhelming health issues (my cervical cancer and subsequent hysterectomy and now his broken back and awaiting surgery), and that was coupled with job changes, so it would come as no surprise to anyone that I might be feeling some stress. It certainly comes as no surprise to me. What is strange, though, is that it took this long for me to lose my shit about it.
I have always been someone who overlooks my own stress. Chronic headaches? I must be drinking too much coffee. Moody and short-tempered? I must not be eating properly. Only sleeping three or four hours a night? It must be a combination of the coffee and the food.
For some reason, I have convinced myself that I am a calm person, and will deny the obvious until I cannot help but fold in on myself and, as I said before, lose my shit. Which shit, by the way, I did lose last night.
I came home yesterday, suddenly realized how woefully unfit I felt to be dealing with most of 2007, verbally threw up all my crazy on the Palinode, who listened and patted and consoled, and then I cried myself to sleep.
3:30 a.m. found me weeping in the bathroom.
At 7:15 a.m., I woke up crying. And then I cried when one of the cats was cute at 7:32 a.m. And then again at 7:47 a.m. when the Palinode said that he loved me. 8:01 a.m. had me searching for the roll of toilet paper I use as facial tissue to clean up gobs of snot from yet another crying stint. I rode this delightful hobby horse until sometime after 2:00 p.m.
What do good coffee, my cold sore, changing a lightbulb, talking on the telephone, making the bed, and hanging up the Palinode's towel all have in common? They all had the power to turn on my waterworks today.
Most of the time, I was not feeling particularly sad or sorry for myself. Having any emotion at all set the tears in motion. I had come uncorked, and nothing was going to stop me from expressing each and every feeling through passionate tears.
It felt good. Terrifically good.
I am glad to finally see myself freaking out a bit, because I have done almost zero of that until now, and I was a little worried about my relative calm. I had cancer, and I barely shed a tear. I had a hysterectomy, and blew my nose over it maybe once. The Palinode is shuffling around with his broken back like he is 127, has done so since March, and may not have the surgery to correct it for another three months, and I manage to fetch his painkillers and wayward shoes with dry eyes.
It is nice to have the post-breakdown knowledge that I am not a robot. That is a good fact, too, because I would be rusted through right now if I were a robot.
Tomorrow, my plan is to get right back to my dissociative, robotic this and that.
But I am hoping for a more tempered mash up of Robot Schmutzie and Dramatic Schmutzie. It would be a positive step forward if I did not completely fall apart over misfiled papers or the goodness of the chocolate chips in my muffin but still had enough emotional stuff to get fired up about the nerdy things I am into like the arrival of a fresh shipment of office supplies.
It has been a good five hours since my last cry, so I am feeling hopeful that the crazy is quieting down for the time being. Wish me luck. I would hate to short out my keyboard tomorrow.