Although my OBGYN had suggested it I waited forever to make an appointment with a councilor about my PPD. I don't feel it is circumstantial so I didn't really see how talking to a councilor would be beneficial. I didn't really think I needed to talk through something to be happy, so why would talking to someone help? I'm so glad I finally decided to talk to someone! This is the third time in my life I've talked to a councilor. First was when I was 18, then again when I was pregnant with Croix because I couldn't get over the fear I wouldn't be able to break the cycle of abuse and I would hurt my child. It was terrifying to me. Both of those times I knew what I needed to work through. This time I didn't. I have depression but what do I talk about? Thankfully my councilor is quite professional and knew what I needed to talk about. Here are some things I have learned.
We are not our thoughts. Everyone has thousands of thoughts a day some are happy, sad, morbid, weird, funny, but there are thousands that just come into our heads.
We can think of our brain like a thought factory. Our thoughts go past us like a product on a conveghor belt. We can let the ones you don't want go right on by. You don't have to hold onto them. You don't have to attach yourself to them. Just let them go right by you. You hold onto the ones you want the ones you like, that make you happy and help you be a better person. Some thoughts may come by more then once and that's ok too. I may hear in my head that I'm a failure 100 times a day. But I can let that thought go 100 times!
The wellness challenge has been great for me to be aware of doing good things in my life. I want to implement this in a helpful way after the challenge is over probably in the form of a daily to do list. Just 4-5 things I need/want to do that day. I like the satisfaction of marking things off and seeing my success on a chart!
We've talked about guilt because I feel guilty pretty often. I need to ask myself is the guilt reasonable? Or am I being too hard on myself? And be honest as I answer that question. For me guilt leads to self hatred feeling like a failure. Those feelings are not good. So I need to avoid feeling unnecessarily guilty. One thing I've been working on is not feeling guilty about letting Croix watch a show in the afternoon during Maizy's nap. He won't nap anymore and doesn't stay in his room quietly. He rarely watches tv any other time during the day. I need a break every one gets breaks at a job. And being a Mom is a job, a hard one. A break helps me to be a better Mom. So I've been letting go of the guilt of "plugging Croix into the tv" And I'm not feeling guilty about what I do on my break. If I just veg out on the computer that's ok, because it's my break. It doesn't have to be productive. I'm also too hard on myself. I need to establish more reasonable expectations.
We've talked about anger. Anger is a normal healthy emotion. Feeling angry is not bad. What I need to measure is what I do with it. As long as I'm not lashing out, it's ok. I don't want to be angry all the time, or stay angry but it is ok to feel angry. This is also related to the guilt. I feel guilty for being angry. Part of the reason I feel guilty about being angry is because anger to
me is equated with being out of control. When my parents would get
angry they would loose control. So in my head it feels like if I'm
angry with my children I should feel bad because that is bad, dangerous,
hurtful. We talked about how anger is a secondary emotion. I already knew this but it was good to be reminded. Anger masks other feelings. If I'm mad at Croix really I'm just frustrated (usually). If I'm mad at Brent I'm hurt or disappointed (usually). So I need to take a moment and ask, what is really going on, why am I feeling angry. Try and find the root. This will help me to have a healthy response to the situation, and anger.
I'm so glad there are educated professionals to help me be a better person, and feel better. All this is so much easier to talk about then implement but even the small efforts have made a big difference.