I’ve decided I am NEVER taking a holiday again until this degree is finished as it seems the ‘powering through’ method of coping was doing me JUST FINE! It wasn’t until I stopped after a particularly lengthy period in between holiday breaks that I started to process how hard this degree is and then how hard the career I have chosen is and THEN the “WHAT HAVE I DONE???” panic set in!!!
There I am lying in bed pretending to be mellow and sleeping the night before returning to university after a two week break and I am flooded with thoughts. Is there a worse time to start thinking and overthinking than 2am when the rest of the world is asleep and you are lying next to somebody who has previously slept through AN EXPLOSION (i.e sleeps like the dead)?! There are few things more disheartening than trying to sleep next to somebody who breathes heavy, snores and responds to none of my ‘polite’ requests to SHUT UP! I share this level of detail as its pertinent to how my mind spiraled from ‘well that was a nice two week break’ to ‘I have LOVED being at home SO MUCH I need to be a stay at home mother and somehow find the money, patience and personality that is the person who can be a stay at home parent’ (disclaimer: nothing wrong with being a stay at home parent I have the utmost respect for anybody who can stay at home its a very hard 24/7 job but its just not for me)
I wont bore you with further details of my psyche and the thoughts I manage to conjure up when ‘insomniated‘ but they are wild and illogical at best. Was the whole decision I had made completely wrong and I needed to leave the course and somehow return to my old career? Picture me lying next to a snoring fella, clammy with terror that i had ruined our lives and our children’s lives by making the WRONG decision …..and so it went on….and on….and on. Until I gave up, got up and indulged in some highbrow tv viewing (Real Housewives of Cheshire..don’t judge me I was stressed!)
So i started back to uni, sleep deprived, full of doubt and pretty much decision made to have a ‘serious discussion’ with my husband when I returned home as i had made a dreadful error and we needed to plan what I can do …I mean I must be the only person who was having doubts and was questioning my passion and drive…mustn’t I? And then I spoke to my pal on the way to uni and she made me feel better by hearing me without judging me. And then I had lectures which were all about everything I LOVE about midwifery; the holistic approach to care, the signposting of women to services which can support them, using our eyes and ears as our best tools…THIS was why I wanted to be a midwife and I did a silent ‘thank you’ to the universe for sending me this message at a time when doubt and fear were in abundance. AND THEN I went back out on the community and I remembered why I love midwifery and being ‘with woman’ ……to care and to listen and to see and to support.
I realized then that my doubts weren’t a sign that I should leave the course and be a stay at home parent or that I need to rethink my decisions but they were (dare I say it!) ….normal. Like a lot of people who have sacrificed so much to follow their passion whatever it is…I have invested SO much already into needing to ALWAYS love midwifery and ALWAYS be passionate for learning and ALWAYS be excited to go on placement (even it means leaving my children and not seeing them for days) that I had effectively set myself up to fail! How can I possibly ALWAYS (such an absolute statement) ALWAYS feel that strongly when there are times when I am tired or my kids are ill and I have to leave them or they have a special assembly I am missing or I simply want to stay at home and knit..on these days it is harder but these days are also in the minority and having come through the other side of this particularly massive doubting session I am CERTAIN I have made the right decision! Moral of the story….be kind to myself whatever is going on in my overactive mind as ‘this too shall pass’ and if I can’t sleep it is probably wiser to have a warm drink and meditate instead of watching trash tv!