It’s hard for me to tell. Am I becoming burnt out, or is it PTSD? Am I overwhelmed, or is it SADD looming on the horizon?
I have triggers, and the resulting irritability and hypervigilance feels like being burnt out, or overtired. Today I was not a master of my irritability.
Oldest Son, when picked up for an appointment, informed me that his brother had physically hurt him (squished his face and poked his head while squeezing the back of his neck) on the bus. He did not understand why. Middle Child explained to me it was because Oldest Son wanted to read a book that was not offered to him, but rather was offered to Middle Child. We went over the definition of bullying. We went over the fact that it was never okay. He gave his apology. We agreed that they do not sit together on the bus anymore. But it settled in, the picture of Middle Child bullying his older, autistic brother, and it disturbed me deeply enough to make me impatient the rest of the evening. I cannot afford to be impatient, because I am supposed to be modeling empathy for these children, not barking at them to stop jumping around.
Or I am impatient from being burnt out. I have three to six appointments a week for the boys. I need to sign them up for extracurriculars, too. I am stressed out about my parents both succumbing to dementia, thousands of miles apart, without any medical care. I am working hard to keep the boys on the right behaviour track, with their relationships and with their school. I have to address each issue and talk them through mistakes, while modeling behaviour and solutions. Sometimes it is too much, and I long for a day where I sleep in and read books and bake all day.
I think I ought to get to the thrift store and get some fiction. If the mechanic manages to fix my car tomorrow, I will.
It could be PTSD. I found out our abuser is doing fantastically well, and is probably making money hand over fist. It makes me feel ill. And frightened. It is on my mind every minute. Money equals power in this country. Power in such hands is terrifying.