anxiety/depression, Life, mental health

Guilt, you’re on the bench…Anxiety, you’re up!

Image result for best laid plans meme

I had the best laid plans for getting this post done over the weekend…and week..and a week after that intended day to post. But turns out that a week back to work after a summer off and a switch to an entirely different work setting the following week with it’s own rules and regulations to navigate has a way of draining a person. And if you toss in a bunch of car shenanigans, that has the potential to take you from drained to tapped out entirely. Okay, maybe that’s specific to my situation, but I can’t be the only one who’s best laid plans often times blow up in her face.

I was going to come home the Friday before last Friday after getting to meet my new supervisor at the secure building I was transferring to and getting a tour at. The plan was to help the hubs get the truck into the shop that his dad’s cousin runs about 15 miles away, get home, make an easy supper and call it a relatively early evening because yes, it was Friday, but we were all up early and why stay up late when you’re exhausted, right?

About a half a mile into the venture to get the truck dropped off, I noticed the front right wheel on the truck angled in. Not good. We ended up having to call insurance to get a tow truck to come get him and with all the waiting around, landed ourselves at the 24/7 truck stop cafe close to 10pm. The food, however, made it very much worth it. I don’t know who’s idea it was to drop an omelette in a bowl of chili but according to my husband, it works.

So, how does anxiety and guilt come to play in any of this? Very easily, actually. This new position, still within the district I work with, came available through my mother-in-law and a connection she had to the detention center. I hoped on it because after how burnt out I was last year, I needed a shift. So sure, why not transfer from a middle school to a detention center. That’s beyond a simple shift. That’s a whole new brand of chaos.

The deal was to start the first week at the middle school and transition over to the detention center the following week. After getting the approval on the transfer, the nerves kicked in. Had I made the right decision? Was I making a huge mistake? Was I going to be even more burned out? How many people was I stressing out with my decision?
And after starting the week at the middle school to a scheduling fiasco, no replacement lined up for me and no long term sub for the caseworker I was teamed up with, my anxiety guilt kicked into overdrive. Suddenly I was making myself sick over all of the teachers who were sad to see me leave, wishing I would stay and help out, feeling this overwhelming urge to fix all of these problems that didn’t directly involve me at all and second guessing absolutely everything. So much so that I emailed my supervisor and new administration team to offer to stay on until a replacement had been found.

Luckily, my new admin team was quick to reply and say we needed to stick with the plan. I still felt guilty, still felt anxious, but reminded myself very firmly that I couldn’t fix all of these issues, and more importantly, they were not my issues to fix. There were other perfectly capable adults who were working behind the scenes.

I don’t know if things were ever lined up before I left. The thing about teachers, caseworkers and para’s…they make things work. Like magical little elves going with the flow and soldiering on.

I started the next week at my new position and could honestly not be happier. It’s in my wheelhouse, I adore the kids, even if some of them loath me entirely and every day is a day I look forward to. Every night is a night I go home feeling up to doing the mom thing, getting the homework done and being present when my kids need me to be.

Guilt and anxiety working together is, unfortunately, common. They feed off of one another, creating this imperfect storm in your head. My advice for anyone taking on these two on your own…remember that it is not your place at all to go fixing the worlds problems. You do what you can do for you and trust that others know how to adult just fine without you being there.

Will it be easy? Heck no, sweetie. Never is. But reminding yourself will be a hell of a lot easier than shouldering everything you don’t even have to shoulder for an outcome that is out of your control anyway.

On that note, peace out my readers. I hope you’re all enjoying this gorgeous fall weather and here’s hoping I can get back on schedule! I make no promises 😉

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