Life with mental illness is hard. There’s no way around that fact. For some it’s a constant niggling knowledge that at any moment, everything could go wrong. For others, it’s a beast the sits on your chest and prevents you from moving or even breathing. You wake up in the morning and it seems to take all of your energy just to roll out of bed and on to the floor. Not gonna lie, the number of days my depression has left me to shout for help because my blanket was wrinkled is more than I should probably admit. But still, when your brain is working against you, what can you do but stay afloat? Mental illness is brutal.
Parenting is hard, too. There’s no way around that either. You have all the perfect parents, the desperate parents, the freestyle parents, and so on, all vying to be the best. You’re sitting here in the middle, just trying to stay awake while they tell you how to fix your latest parenting crisis. Baby won’t sleep? That’s okay! There’s a cure! Kids fighting? We’ve got a few different fixes for that. Mommy can’t stay awake? Try one of our thousand delightful recipes, guaranteed to wake you up and provide valuable bonding time with your littles. Okay, so, I’m exaggerating a little….but the thought is there. Parenting is crazy hard work.
When you add those two things together…. well, that gives you a whole new world of hard. You can become the parent who thanks god her eldest is old enough to cook for the youngest because you can’t even find pants and now you’re sobbing on the floor. You can be the parent who looks at their newborn babe and instead of a swelling of the heart feels a crushing despair. You can become the parent who overthinks every single action from your girl because you know that she’s right around the right age to start presenting symptoms, and god…there’s a 10% chance she will. You become more than just an illness, and more than just a role.
Parenting is hard. Mental illness is hard.
Parenting with mental illness? I’m pretty sure we’re superheroes.
Come be a superhero with me.