Calmness is the cradle of power – Josiah Gilbert Holland
In mental health terms, a trigger refers to something that affects your emotional state, mostly in a significant way, and causes you to become overwhelmed or distressed. It can affect your ability to remain present in the moment and can bring up specific thought patterns or influence your behaviour (healthline.com, 2019)
I want to touch on this a little in this blog as I reflect on my own responses to situations where I feel I lose control or divert into a state of change that changes my mood, and my behaviour, causes my voice to raise and for this internal rage to form. I am so used to being it all. I can listen to 3 conversations whilst watching something or cooking, I think I have mastered the multitasking aspect of motherhood but upon reflection, sometimes I feel like I didn’t hear anything because I got lost in the conversation and stopped to think about something else. Do other women/men feel the same or is it a mum skill? (leave me some feedback below, as I have never really thought about this) I think I experience this multiple times a day and find it hard to focus at times until they say my name. Am I just zoning out? Can you really think and listen and respond at the same time. Yes I can listen to back ground music and noise but if I had to make a sound decision I don’t think I could.
Since I can remember, or since I became a mother, I have always sacrificed to make it work. I mean sacrifice in a sense of I will stop what I am doing to have to do something that is important now. Now that could be pick up, drop-offs, leaving work early, shuffling the schedule etc. However, sometimes the expectation that the significant other would help out has occurred only for me to realise that this is not a consistent commitment or, in my experience, has never been. Regardless of the confirmation that they will drive my son to football practice or be there for pick-up, it doesn’t always work out that way. I can only rely on myself. I always show up; I am always the reliable one. I can be trusted. Am I the only one? How do I consistently do this? When things don’t go according to plan I find that this really disturbs my peace. I can go from 0 to 100 seconds; I can’t handle opposition. If you say you can do it, then do it, don’t give me or the kid excuses. Maybe my patience is just running out, I should work on this even though I have practiced deep breathing before to help alleviate the feelings or even taken myself for a long walk or run, I know what to do. But this doesn’t resolve the problem, which is a lack of responsibility or commitment. This makes me sad that I can’t understand what could be more important. Then when applying The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz, it all makes sense. I need to be reminded that I cannot assume. It is all about my perception and not actions that I cannot control. I will continue to catch myself and redirect my emotions to a place where I can soothe them and allow myself to fully appreciate and validate that what I am doing is enough and that is all that matters.
Even when we choose to share our life with a partner, we set expectations for ourselves for the relationship not realising that we are both on a new journey together and that the future is not guaranteed. Acknowledging this has given me a new perspective on what a relationship in the current times is. The demands of life are strenuous and it is I that has to look after ME; communication is only the aid that can help us to steer our ship in the same direction. If the wind changes and the focus or intention is lost it is understandable that the purpose is no longer. For now, I choose to work on myself, to soothe myself when I get worked up to explain my feelings to the kids in the hope that they can unpack my thought process and appreciate my hard work in making things come together; To catch myself when I need to and to love myself because that is more important.