Ruined Mothers- The Tale of a Summer 'Holiday'.

Sep 05, 2021
I wanted to post today for any sobriety returners- anyone who has had a slip or drunk again or whatever the language you use that  feels both real enough but at the same time non-shaming. Mandy did a post on our Facebook Community about how welcome everyone is and I echo that, of course.
I also wanted to blog about this last week AND we had planned to do a podcast about things we still find difficult but did not have the time with family commitments, back to school prep and burnout. I have had to work hard at letting that be OK for now. 
We have noticed a pattern and a trigger point that I feel is almost as significant for us as women, mums, carers and that is the last weekend of the summer 'holidays' or early September, as Xmas . And it's that end point, crash being still high up on the stress cycle and REALLY needing to dial it down.
Yesterday, already exhausted and burnt out from the summer's lack of routine and space combined with demands of work (and other stuff) I started to unravel. I then had the annual combination of all of the above and my daughter's birthday, and The Party.
I not only dropped her to school the wrong day on Thursday - on her actually birthday which made me feel out of control but I also had to cancel a discovery call and was super stressed about our publisher needing a rewrite on some material. My inner critic and catastrophist  all kicked off. We then had to host the amine/ slime party and a sleepover yesterday - all the planning and the buildup - it was awesome in the end but I 'had' to keep popping to the shop to get things (to escape) and said to my OH 'I need them to all f off as I'm going to start getting nasty' ( this was three hours in, when it was a two hour party) .. Then dig deep for the sleepover. So .. I got through without being evil to the kids and then in a bigger hole - just. 
In 2014 this happened and it was the day I went back to drinking after 13 months AF. 7 years on, and after all my bloody waxing lyrical on the subject of self-care , I was so knocked sideways that if I had not spent the last few years trying and failing and prioritising the tool kit and working it going on anti depressants and getting HRT and all the bloody stuff I would have drunk to cope with the overwhelm and feeling like I was never going to calm the F down.
I had a drinking dream last night - just the one gin... secretly - I never drank gin so I don't know what that was about except a metaphor for being a ruined mother, ruined by the Cluster F of the summer. So - I wanted to blog this out quickly to just say - it's real, this stuff - and that's why we have to get boundaries, and better at saying NO and calling BS on parties and doing it all ...and importantly, crucially, having HEAPS of self compassion when we don't meet our expectations, or screw up or make mistakes or end up on panic island - or had a slip/ drunk again . And know that was just another try, part of life, another cycle of learning and we are allowed to try again and incorporate the new learning - we have NOT failed. Life is A LOT and we are all doing awesome. If this is you then let's do September together and start by acknowledging or efforts, dusting ourselves off and setting our chins at a jaunty angle and getting a bit excited about knitwear and the fact that we start again this new season - it's OK. 

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