The Picture-Perfect Life: Paralyzed to Your Problems…
I want to take a quick pause from my story and focus on the feelings that were taking place at that moment…I like to call it, “feeling paralyzed to my problem.”
What does that look like or mean to you?
For me, it’s exactly what it says. On the exact day a tragedy takes place, you’re in shock, in disbelief, and confused. It feels like you're starring in one of those movies where you’ve seen tragedy take place but your feelings aren’t as deep in it because it’s not your actual situation.
However, when it’s actually you dealing with a tragedy, it doesn’t quite sink in right away. It’s that very next day, when you wake up... you feel paralyzed to not knowing what to do next.
For me, I had a 3-week-old son on one hand and his father on the other fighting to survive.
He was undergoing brain surgery after surgery to stop the bleeding on his brain. I was physically and mentally numb to what I was supposed to be doing at that moment. Also, add post-partum depression somewhere in the mix.
I honestly can’t decipher where the bulk of my depression came from—the accident or post-partum. All I know is that I felt helpless and confused in that present moment. I knew that I could do something about being a mommy… however, I couldn’t do anything about saving my boyfriends life.
When you're numb or paralyzed to a problem... you have to TRY to think fast.
It’s like falling into deep water not knowing how to swim. If you just lay there, you’re going to quickly drown. But, if you start jumping up and down—you’re buying yourself time to not be pulled under where you completely lose control over yourself. Buying that time is crucial in helping you think of ways to get back to shore.
That was me.
I had to quickly figure out how I could be at the hospital for my boyfriend while needing to be at home with my newborn. I had to make a choice to take myself out the equation—so there was no properly healing from delivery for me. There was no being able to truly mourn for my boyfriend. I had a responsibility to not take our newborn through the emotional ride that I was truly feeling.
As easy as the advice sounds, it’s harder to put into motion—especially when you're struggling emotionally.
So, this is how I quickly started becoming unparalyzed to my problem…
First, I envisioned where I wanted to be—so for me, that was the opposite of depressed so that I can clearly see what needs to be done.
Second, I pray and meditate for guidance. In that moment, I’m motionless and still so that I can receive answers. I ask in my prayers for signs, words, ideas, or whatever to help motivate me back to a space of movement.
Third, I start taking baby steps. I don’t overwhelm myself on all that needs to be done or what I’m starting to get behind on, I just focus on a step at a time.
You have to always remember that life and people move right past you.
Initially, you have people around as support... then one by one, they start dropping off like flies.
So, you need to know and gain strength to support yourself first emotionally and then the rest will follow suit. Always remember at the end of the day, when the lights go out—you only have what you can provide to yourself.
People come and go –doesn’t mean they leave your life when I say this—but they can’t be responsible for you mentally, physically, financially and emotionally. It’s your job to take care of that.