‘Holiday’

It’s not that I can and I don’t want to, it’s that I want to, and I can’t that is the most frustrating thing. Not a reference to anything specific, but rather the simple pleasures in life. I’m on holiday with my family in France, in a lovely house, in hot weather, with a pool – I can read (which I am grateful for), swim, play games, whatever I want. I have the deferred exam to take obviously, so there’s a little revision thrown in, but not too much since there’s only the one exam. Most days have been fine. That is until last night, when I experienced a major panic and rather a lot of distress. Nothing too concerning though.

Today was a lot worse. Everything had been going fine: I had swum; and read – I finished another book – I seem to get through an awful lot on holiday; felt relaxed, thrown a ball playing catch with my siblings; been splashing and messing around by the pool. I came in to do some work late in the day, got a whole topic done, had a short break, got the next one out. I just crashed. It wasn’t the work. It would certainly have been manageable had my head not decided to implode at that particular moment. In relation to the can and the want thing – I couldn’t concentrate, but I definitely wanted to. I knew I could go outside, but I felt no enjoyment at the prospect. I cried, shook, tried to calm down, got very angry with myself. Because there was no reason for me to feel like that. I am on track with my work. I am on holiday from ordinary life – a much needed break.

Yet, what most see as a ‘holiday’, I anticipate with dread, the suggestion of going away filling me with anxiety, travelling 850 miles in the car with four other family members all age 16+ is not exactly a relaxing experience. We got here ok, and it wasn’t too dreadful. The journey not being fun is fairly obvious and expected. The house is incredible, the best I’ve ever stayed in, with the best pool too. I do appreciate it, it’s just that when I get into those darkest moment, full fathom five into the deep seas of my brain, I lose all sense of the material, the present – and yet, simultaneously, I am existing entirely within the present. I can’t focus, I can’t breathe, I feel an immense sadness and I don’t understand why.

I may physically be on holiday, but what those around me sometimes don’t seem to realise is that I can never truly be having a break from every day life, because I take my head with me, and my head takes up a lot of intangible space in my life as it is. I cannot control not being able to relax. I am trying my absolute best. Which is why it is so frustrating when an intense episode hits when it has been going averagely recently – and by ‘averagely’, that means pretty good for me, considering the last seven years or so.

E

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