I think most people think I'm nice and normal. Pretty much cheerful and easygoing all the time. The truth is, they're only seeing the Outside Me.
Outside Me is relentlessly cheerful. Outside Me writes funny posts for facebook, hangs out with co-workers in the breakroom cracking jokes, and loves a girls' night out every now and then. Outside Me takes the kids to the museum or does a craft or cooking project with them. Outside me is fun to be with. And Outside Me is real, it's just not all of me... or even most of me.
There's also Middle Me... that's the middle ground between the Outside Me that I wish I really was all the time and the Inside Me that is a horrible mess. Middle Me can't quite manage to write a funny post, but can maybe repost something someone else put together. Middle Me stays closed in the office all day to avoid having to talk to co-workers too much. Middle Me finds excuses not to go out to church events or hang out with friends, even knowing it would probably be a lot of fun. Middle Me has a hard time interacting with the kids sometimes. Middle Me takes the kids to the park so they can run around and have fun, with no effort required on Mommy's part. Middle Me lets the kids do a Mommy Makeover, because they do all the work and Mommy just has to sit in the chair. Middle Me gets grumpy and yells at the kids way too easily. Middle Me is low-key, sometimes cranky, a little too quiet, and not a whole lot of fun.
And then there's Inside Me. Inside Me is not fun. Inside Me doesn't want to get out of bed in the morning - or even the afternoon. Inside Me is just tired all the time. Nothing seems to help. Inside Me cries at the drop of a hat... lunch gets burned? Deadline is missed? Low on gas? Turn on the waterworks. Inside Me doesn't play with the kids. Inside Me just sits in the chair and hopes that the kids aren't getting into too much trouble in the next room. Inside Me tries to convince the kids that we should all watch a movie... just because that's easier for Mommy. Inside Me can't manage to do the dishes or sweep the floors because it's just too much effort. Inside Me can't answer the phone or open the mail because there might be bad news. Inside Me can't get anything done at work because Inside Me has lost the ability to concentrate. Inside Me dreads going to church/work/school functions because people might figure out just how inadequate Inside Me really is. Inside Me desperately wants to stop feeling this way, but just can't manage it.
I tried to talk to Aaron about it a little yesterday. But Inside Me doesn't have the words to talk in person. Inside Me can only get out the sentence... "I think I need new meds. These don't seem to be working." But Inside Me can't manage to say what I really meant... "I'm drowning and I need you to help me."
Because Aaron can't read minds, he could only respond to what I managed to say out loud. And he reminded me that I was off my meds for almost two weeks. We had a couple of very large, very unexpected expenses that left us broke. We literally had no money to go refill my prescriptions and I figured it was no big deal to go without for a few days. And then the few days stretched a little longer. And honestly, I didn't notice a difference. Maybe I was a little crankier with the kids, but nothing major. So it seems odd that now that I'm back ON my meds that I'm spiralling down so fast. But as Aaron pointed out, it can take time for the meds to take effect, and maybe I was off them long enough to have to start over building them up in my system. I'm hoping that's what it is, and in another week or so I can stop feeling so terrible all the time. Inside Me just needs to cheer the hell up.