It’s how we live. It’s our defining characteristic as a family. Chaos! And I despise it. Even the word makes the little hairs on my neck stand to attention.

I’ve always been pretty organised. I confess that I am a whimsical gadget purchaser, that I am a bit of a hoarder, a trait I am witnessing in the littlest too, but when it came to plans, I was organised. Now, I’m not. Not in the slightest.

I forget birthdays, I forget food in the oven, I forget to do things I’ve promised to do. I’m late for things, or turn up for things at the wrong time or date. I see tasks that I must complete stacking up like planes on a runway and I keep adding and adding.

And the reason, burnout.

I did an online survey. I have caregiver burnout. I need to rest and recover on a daily basis. I need to find time for the things I enjoy, I need to do more physical exercise. I need another couple of hours in the day!

It’s an Americanism. According to

Caregiver burnout is a state of physical, emotional, and mental exhaustion that may be accompanied by a change in attitude — from positive and caring to negative and unconcerned.

but I know it’s real. I feel it. Even here in England.

Very recently I had a massive shift in my mental state. I was uplifted and became organised. I was tidy. I was motivating everyone else to be tidy. We were eating properly. I stopped drinking wine. I was sleeping. I felt energised. And that uplifted me more.

Then Aine’s health, and so her behaviour, declined. As that declined, so did my new found status and I plummeted back to chaos.

I am not sleeping properly, I’m tired, restless, tense, sore. I’m not concentrating; I’m making mistakes in my beloved crochet, speed reading pages in my book, half listening to tv programmes. I’m forgetting to do things; packed lunches, children’s reading, chasing civil servants.

A few nights of respite recently, a night out, left me feeling even more exhausted. I let down the scaffolding that’s holding it all together and I felt worse than I did before. (I should like to point out here that I had a really good time and enjoyed spending time with the amazing MrM.)

Moving forward, I’m hoping to get back on track sooner rather than later. I’m hoping to see some changes that see me edge back towards that uplifted state. I’ve done it before so I can do it again, right.

Watch this space ….


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