One of the fun things about depression is that you can never quite be sure when it will hit you. You plod along thinking that everything’s getting a bit better, and then – BANG – something wallops you unexpectedly and you find yourself sitting in a very dark room again, both metaphorically and physically.
I went back to work this week, full of anxiety, shaking like a leaf, but I got through it! My colleagues were great, although a little bit odd because they were very nice to me, and usually there’s a little bit more banter! I’ve warned them for next week that I expect them to be as rude to me as they ever were, so we’ll see!
We saw the clinical psychologist this week about the boys. She has gathered all of the information from our assessments and wanted to give us some feedback. The first thing she said was that it was clear from watching us that I am the nurturing parent and Mrs S is the firmer parent! She did say there was an overlap too, but that we needed to develop more overlap! Part of the assessment was to film us playing some Theraplay games, so she made us watch some bits of the video back, which was cringey to say the least! But it showed how the boys behaved differently towards each of us.
One of the most obvious things from Norman was his need to control every situation. Every game, every activity, he wanted to take over and tell everyone else what to do. She says it stems from his underlying feeling that adults can’t be trusted.
Marvin, she said, appears to have an emotional age of around 18 months. So he is the size of a five and a half year old, he has the vocabulary of a five and a half year old, but in the same way as you would expect a toddler to grab at things, struggle to engage for long, and tantrum, Marvin can’t yet control that side of him.
Both boys were very reluctant to discuss their past with us, although we do talk regularly at home. She also said that both were extremely hyper vigilant, constantly assessing their surroundings for danger. None of what she told us shocked us greatly; a lot of it we have been saying for almost three years now, but hopefully having a highly qualified professional saying it too means that we’ll finally get the support that the boys desperately need.
So 2020 has continued much as 2019 finished, which is no great surprise! We have a lot of work to do as a family, but also a lot of work to do individually (particularly Mrs S and I) to make this family work the way we want it to. I live in hope that this is the year things get a bit easier! Although I’ve also learned not to hold my breath…
In the meantime, I took myself off to get a tattoo to remind me when things get tough…
It really hurt, it’s my first one! But interestingly, once the pain wears off you start wondering about the next…
Knitting wise, I’ve started this year’s mystery blanket, so in a year I’ll have another knitted blanket! Can you ever really have too many?
It might be that at some point I have to start giving gigantic blankets as presents!
I do feel lost still, very much so, but I’m also fighting to find myself.