Updated: Jun 25, 2022
This is a difficult DOCC Blog to write.
If you have been a follower and friend of the DOCC Blog for some time you will probably have noticed the move towards self care - taking time and being easy on yourself.
My instagram page has also been about slowing down when you need to and having a pared down basic routine for those times when you are running on empty. My most recent posts have been off the cuff posts from my garden, it is here I have been able to find some joy.
I am not writing this in order to gain sympathy, in fact I thought long and hard about writing anything at all. I am writing this because I think it may well help somebody in a similar situation.
We had a long time to come to terms with the fact that my dad was going to die, this meant we could enjoy his company, make memories and just make sure we never missed an opportunity to do things together.
It also meant that we were living with the certainty of his death for over a year, never quite knowing what was around the corner. This is a lot to deal with and dealing with it over a prolonged time is very stressful for everyone.
As dad began to decline with his health, my mental health went into decline also.
I became weepy, nervous and lost confidence in myself showing up ‘online’, at work and in everyday life. I stopped creating - something which I have normally found very therapeutic. I just wanted to be with my parents. When I was with them or doing something to help them I felt like I was normal again. Anything else became, understandably, secondary in importance.
And by focusing only on my parents I became pretty much rudderless in the rest of my life.
I have kept up the routine of going into work, I have a part - time job, and that's about all I have managed.
With one exception - I have done my best to stick to a pared down daily routine.
I got up, dressed, ate breakfast and wiped down the bathroom after finishing in there in the morning. Simple habits which have kept me going everyday. At least each day began with actions I knew I could complete and which I knew would kick start another day.
You may not be cleaning, decluttering and organising your home as you want to be but you are starting the day by taking care of yourself and - as in my case - taking care of one small task around the home. Instead of wiping down the bathroom you may decide to add fill and empty the dishwasher to your pared down routine.
Just be sure that this pared down routine is achievable. We are not developing new systems or setting up new routines here. What we are doing is grounding ourselves with easy to do, small tasks. Gently beginning each new day with the familiar.
Eventually and gradually I am adding in more of my morning routine. As I feel ready.
Everybody’s experience with grief is unique to them, up until now I have carried on working. It has been a distraction, especially when dad was getting more poorly. But I don’t know how I will feel in the coming months, whether I can keep moving forwards one day at a time or whether I will need time and space to grieve. So I am giving myself permission to take each day, week, month as it comes.
I am accepting help as it is offered, we have a Social Prescriber at my GP’s surgery and she has introduced me to programmes I may not have found or even thought about myself.
I hope this DOCC Blog helps someone.
I hope next months DOCC Blog will be back to the normal hints, tips and advice about decluttering and organising.
One day at a time.