So I might look like the queen of overreacting sometimes, but sometimes it’s about more than the tea that you burned when you forgot how long it had been on the oven, the fact your hair isn’t going quite right, bumping into someone you don’t like in the street, or the glass that you dropped and smashed.
I can deal with a lot of stress, pressure and upset. A couple of months ago, I was taken into the consultation room at my six monthly eye hospital appointment and told that the vision in my right eye was never coming back. I turned down the offer of ‘emotional help’ (doesn’t that sound so serious, 3 long years after I actually lost my central vision and was offered no support?) and got on with the rest of my week, after a quick moan to my partner. I can deal with a stressful shift at work, an argument with my partner, my daughter needing to see a doctor and the doctor taking forever to call me back, but if a glass breaks in my house on a Tuesday evening, that just might cause tears.
My colleague says that everyone has a little bucket in their brain with water dripping into it. When your bucket gets full, it just takes one more drip to cause an overflow and everyone’s bucket is a different size, just like everyone handling things differently.
Sometimes, I accept that I look like I’m overreacting. I don’t actually choose to have one little thing completely ruin my day, but, actually, it can do and I can’t explain why, it’s just how my brain deals with stress. I hold on to a lot of little things and, until I find a way to deal with them, they just sit there, in the back of my mind, but not far enough back that they’re file away in the ‘completed’ section.
I’m sure there are much healthier ways to deal with things and I have actually got better – not that I’m sure my partner would quite agree with that! – since I learned a few better coping techniques in counselling a few years ago. I’m trying not to hold things in like I really used to do, because sitting on things isn’t healthy, especially when you’re not healthy and always having bad news about your health!
Am I overreacting? If you only consider the one thing I’m upset about, then.. probably. If you consider every other thing dripping into the bucket, then no and thank you for your patience with me when I’m having a day when something just pushes me a little over the edge at the end of it all.
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