Life Journey, Mental Wellbeing, Relationships

A Knock-on Effect

So I’ve been absent for two weeks. Rather than snivel and apologize for not providing blog posts for the last two Sundays, I thought I might explain why.

James’ last remaining grandparent was diagnosed with a very aggressive strain of cancer which basically destroyed her within three weeks. James was close to her and naturally took the news hard, which was quite upsetting to see. He managed to take time off work to nip down to England and visit her. She hung on to dear life to see him, and passed away little more than half an hour after he left. (How sad but nice at the same time is that?)

Dying is something that we all have to deal with. I wasn’t prepared for the situation. This is the first time James and I have had to go through this as a couple. I was forever nagging him about calling Nana and having a chat with her, because one day she wouldn’t be here anymore. Well, that day came.

My main concern throughout this ordeal has been making sure James is okay and that I’m doing everything I can to make life easy for him, which is all very logical and practical. I wasn’t prepared for how it would impact me. It made me sad, obviously – I got on incredibly well with her and always called her ‘Nana Brenda’ – she was such a character, and on top of that it’s never nice seeing your partner upset about anything.

I walked about for days unable to shake off the melancholy that had shrouded me, which in turn made me feel guilty and selfish. This was nothing to do with me, it was about my partner losing someone he loved, but I couldn’t help the feelings I was getting. I found it very difficult to ‘place’ myself – I didn’t know whether to leave James alone, try and talk, or comfort him and tell him everything was going to be alright.

As Nana’s condition deteriorated over the following days from the diagnosis, I slowly began to stop exercising. I stopped cooking dinner. Then I stopped sleeping.

I’m sure the rest of you can fill in the blanks. It got pretty bad. The thing that got me was that it came completely out of nowhere! I mean, she’s not my grandmother, and it’s not like James was a snotty, shaky wreck rocking in the corner of the room. Why would I feel so shitty?

It came to me yesterday. It’s that feeling of being completely useless. Anything you say or do is NOT going to bring the person back, nor is it going to make the grieving person feel any better. It’s hopeless. Having no control over a situation and that feeling of hopelessness is something I strongly associate with depression.

I haven’t suffered a period of depression in well over a year, so it was like getting hit in the face with a brick.

So here I am, picking myself up to restart what I ‘should’ be doing. I can’t let this recent situation take over, nor can I let those sorts of feelings take over. I refuse to let that happen without putting up a fight.¬† I know I’ve put on weight, I haven’t typed a single word for nearly three weeks and my training plan is shot to hell. I’m still fighting. I’ll get back to it. One day at a time.

At least I know what to expect the next time… cheery, eh?

 

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