I am lucky to have a fantastic husband. He loves me and gives his all to help enable me to take care of myself, and I appreciate it more than words could ever express. But… he’s human too. And he’s just as fragile as anyone else, and he’s got the weight of a world on his shoulders. There’s me in my fragility, our child, work, his family… it’s a lot for any one person to deal with. And, as I’ve learned from my own experiences, we tend to neglect ourselves when we have everyone else to deal with.
It’s hard to support your supporter. While they are completely deserving of all the good things and treatment, there is this problem where you’re a bit too broken to be able to hold it together to make sure they get the support and time off that they need. I am terrible about reminding my husband to take a break, and even when I do, he often shrugs it off; he knows that routine serves us all well. And I know that to be true; routine has shown itself to be a fantastic way to keep my mood stabilized for whatever odd reason. But that means he’s on the run from dawn to dusk, while I stare on bemusedly. I could try harder to remind him to stop and catch his breath, but that runs the risk of unbalancing me, rendering the well-intentioned attempt moot.
Then there’s always the chance for guilt to sneak up and club you. It’s a friend of depression, you see – it lays in wait to tell you what a loser you are for needing so much support. We all need support, we all need someone to lean on, sure… but you? Feh, can’t stand on your own, how sad, how pathetic. Never mind that’s not always true of bipolar and/or depression, and that we all have times where we cannot stand without the support of others… but it doesn’t stop ‘Friend’ depression from trying to knock us down with it. And it does a good job of keeping one down at the best of times; how can one confidently offer support and freedom to their supporter if they are not confident in their ability to make it a mere few hours on their lonesome?!
But eh, we do the best we can do, and try to do the best for those most directly affected by our existence. It’s not easy when the construct as so fragile as to be knocked over by a breath of wind, but we can either try to pick ourselves back up and keep trying to lean on each other, or give up in a pile. It’s an exhausting thought either way, so I’m just glad that I’m still sort of holding on. That we are sort of holding on, that we try to keep each other in the loop about how we’re feeling so we CAN slipshoddily support each other. It’s worth it, after all.