In Which I Feel Stifled

For a while, things looked to have improved. I was still pretty down though. Haven’t had a moment to myself to write or even find a brain cell. I can’t focus myself. I’m just too knackered. Then lockdown struck.

You’d think I’d be fine with not going out since I rarely go out anyway, but as it turns out, things are worse from people actually being here. I closed myself off. I didn’t so much stop talking to people as I did not want to speak to people while I had nothing happy or funny to share. If I knew they were happy, I felt I’d only bring them down. If they were sad, I felt I’d make things worse.

Things that used to make me feel slightly better – tales of Karens, for example – now just make me miserable. For a while I logged into Facebook purely to share some pictures, engage with those crappy “picture a day” lockdown games. My entire feed was Karens, people on local groups moaning about stuff that doesn’t matter. Nothing from family or friends, people I care about. Then again, none of these people usually engage with me so I suppose that’s an algorithm thing. I missed a post and then received a message from my best friend who was disappointed in me for not asking how she is or sharing a post I hadn’t seen. I asked what had happened, but I suppose I had already done the damage and she’s not responded. Now I feel that if I do say anything, it’ll sound fake, ridiculously insincere. Then again, when you’re spending your days not really crying but with a seemingly endless trail of tears flowing down… I feel shit enough as it is. Talking makes me shitter. As a result, I’ve been off social media for a few weeks now.

And then one of my cousins died from Covid. He was 73. Really lovely man. I’m sad about that, though last year he was diagnosed with dementia. It made me more scared for my family, more angry about people flouting the rules. I mean, government now says from Monday up to six people can meet outdoors. When I’ve been out with Travis and Freyja, seems that it’s what people are doing anyway. Groups of (socially distanced) sixes and twelves were out in the park. Then you see the people whose idea of two metres is in fact one foot. Somehow I feel there’s going to be an increase in cases.

Next week we’ll be moving. My father’s finally had enough of living where my mum was and is looking to be by himself now. Freyja needs her own room. Not that she’s going to use it, now she’s decided she’s only going to sleep well cuddled up against me. Dad’s staying in Essex. We’re off to Suffolk, far from most people I know, and in the middle of nowhere. At least I’ll have Rosie to keep me sane.

I feel like there’s nobody I can talk to. Five words into any sentence, Travis is rolling his hand to tell me to hurry up. I feel I can’t do anything right, that no matter what I’m going to be criticised. Earlier I watched the video of George Floyd’s death. I was criticised for the tears welling up because there are children dying from abuse and neglect every day.

There’s immense backseat parenting going on – and yes, I know he is Freyja’s father and parenting is in his job description, but even when he’s here, he’s not with us. I don’t begrudge him his me time because he does need it, but sometimes I feel the only way I can get some time to myself is if I take her to him. She gets delivered back the moment she says “mum”. Right now, “mum” means a lot. It’s rather annoying. Mum means anything from mum through to “get something for me”. I wouldn’t mind so much if it wasn’t for the fact he’s signed me up for a course – to go with the other four I enrolled on that I have no time for – so I can do some newsletters about things I know nothing about. He thinks I need to get myself motivated, and I do. What he doesn’t realise is that what I need to motivate myself is some time without a baby demanding my attention at every second of the day. I know, I need to say something to him, get him to spend more time with her, but I already feel like I can’t talk to him. He has the opinion “all mothers go through this”. The problem is that he’s thinking of the single mothers. The mothers who do have the fathers with them apparently have help from the fathers. I’m always being told what I need to do with her, and then there’s the well-meaning but frustrating suggestion that he creates a daily schedule for me. No, Travis, I don’t need a schedule, I need you.

My main problem here is I still feel unloved and unwanted, but now I’m beginning to feel unliked too. Not just because of the fact I feel I can’t say more than yes or no to Travis, but because I’ve come to realise what I really knew already – there are currently three exceptions, but by and large if I don’t write the first message, if I don’t say the first word, if I don’t say the first I love you, I know the only person I’ll be speaking to aside from Freyja or Rosie is the person who calls from Microsoft because the computer I don’t have has a virus.

Still, I’m sure at some point when Freyja’s older I’ll be able to do something I want to do.

Anyway. That’s generally how I feel at the moment. My one highlight though is watching them two together. I really wish it’d happen more.

Update: Shit just hit the fan starting with pent up frustration and a book. A lot of shouting later, all I know is he’s been staying away from me because he’s avoiding the arguments. Funny thing is, I don’t remember there’s been any arguments, just me trying to say things and him shutting me down. I know it must be hard for him when he’s trying to motivate me but I’m so despondent. I don’t know where to turn. I feel so alone right now.

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