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I have crashed quite spectacularly. I can’t describe it and I don’t think I want to. It was inevitable, but I was too busy preparing for the essay and exam that I didn’t prepare for the crash.

Three good people held me together yesterday: Hubby, my dad and Wendy. But they all said I should be looking after myself better, perhaps taking even a short amount of time off work. I can’t, I honestly can’t. I can’t be that person anymore. The one who breaks under stress.

I’m going against all my instincts, and apparently other people’s instincts too. Being a stubborn cow, to put it bluntly. I did nearly break today though. I work from home on Fridays, but I’ve had to give that up this week and next, for the simple reason that academics can’t walk for 15 minutes to collect bits of paper. I have to travel for three hours just to collect those bits of paper for them. I like this time of year at work and mostly am happy to go the extra mile. But doing that when I’m more exhausted than I’ve been in a year, well, I nearly cried when my boss told me this today.

She left early today. And yesterday. Having a child is the perfect get-out-of-work-early card. I came so close to asking if I could go home too. Instead, I smiled at her as she happily walked out of the office.

Feeling crap is my own fault. See above for stubborn cow. Thing is, I recognise this pattern. A quick scroll through last year’s blogposts indicates a repeating pattern. Too much stress, being knackered and refusing to give myself a break – well, it can’t lead to anything good. Yesterday, I fell asleep on the train home from work, crawled into bed and slept all night, then fell asleep on the train this morning. And then on the tube. I have no idea how I made it to work. The same thing happened on the way home tonight. Hubby has tried to force me into bed early but I need to get some thoughts out or they’ll eat at my mind all night.

I recognise that I am repeating a pattern that doesn’t often ever end well. I know I’m far too tired. I know anxiety eventually pulls me into depression. I know I am being incredibly stubborn. I had actually forgotten how bad things got last year. Yes, there was anxiety, there were some bad heart flip-outs. But I had forgotten that I ended up in such a state that I couldn’t get out of bed, couldn’t talk to my boss and hubby had to call in sick for me. Thankfully, I recovered well but it happened.

It cannot happen again. Therefore, one would think that the sensible thing to do is to head it off at the pass now. But, again with the stubborn. I know I feel like shit, everything is distorted, every thought, every feeling. I also know that if I don’t say something now it will go unnoticed at work until it is too late. My boss noticed something was up yesterday but she was satisfied when I told her I’m tired but fine. I’m known in my family for being a fantastic liar.

See all that above? Insight combined with a stubborn refusal to do anything about it. At the same time, I also want to come off the Lamotrigine because I’m not convinced I have Bipolar. Maybe a slight tendency towards mild depression. Yes, I have been reminded of some not-exactly-normal thoughts from a year or so ago. I’d forgotten them. Those friends who insist on remembering stuff. Great, aren’t they? Grrrr.

Also? Really, the main issue here is that I am weak. But also strong. It’s hard to explain that one. One side of my brain tells me that there is absolutely nothing wrong with me, that I’m just a weak person who needs to slap herself a bit and get a grip. The other side says, look at all your notes, remember all that shit, remember the misery and humiliation of the last few years. That’s because something isn’t right.

The two combine into my stubborn refusal to give myself a break. If I am weak then I need to power on through and prove to myself and everyone else that I am not weak anymore. If I have this illness thingy, then I also have to power on through and prove that I am strong and able to cope with it, I need to not give myself any reason to feel more shame.

I read a blogpost yesterday, asking if crying indicates weakness. Absolutely not, is my answer. Hubby is very emotional and cries easily. I love him more for it. But I am humiliated if I cry. I hold those treacherous tears back as hard as I can, until they insist on running down my face without my authorisation. Is anything about me weak? Does Bipolar (if I have it) make me weak? Crying? Anxiety? A heart that beats too fast and hurts my chest? Is this weakness? Yes. Definitely. Am I therefore weak? Me, the real me? Am I weak?

Anyway… I know the answer. The answer is no. But my brain has trouble with that. I am weak. It’s been shouted at me. It’s not true, but really it is. Bloody hell, is it any wonder I’m knackered when I do this to myself?

So. After all this incredibly (I’m so tired I had to use spellcheck to remind me how to spell incredibellendy) circular waffling, I have to come back to singing, as always. Just keep singing. Just keep singing. Just keep singing, singing, singing. I feel squashed, chained, but I am actually free. Feelings have absolutely nothing to do with it, which is a good thing, given how unreliable mine are:

Where the spirit of the Lord is
There is freedom

Lift Your eyes to heaven
There is freedom

Freedom reigns in this place
Showers of mercy and grace

Falling on every face
There is freedom

If You’re tired and thirsty
There is freedom

Give Your all to Jesus
There is freedom

Freedom reigns in this place
Showers of mercy and grace

Falling on every face
There is freedom

If your burden’s heavy
He brings freedom

If you’re hurt and broken
He brings freedom

Freedom reigns in this place
Showers of mercy and grace

Falling on every face
There is freedom

Great is Your faithfulness
Great is Your faithfulness