Is there such a thing as the opposite of being homesick? If so, that’s what I am.
I don’t know about you, but I am not okay. I’ve been powering through these last several months, with the hope that things will get better, but they haven’t, and it’s finally hitting me. HARD. I am talking daily breakdowns, snapping at everything, unable to appreciate things because all I feel is rage and sadness, and it feels impossible to slow down and hit that mental reset button.
While I am a fully capable business professional who can turn off personal to get the job done, well and on time, it is certainly taking its toll to keep doing so (even though I have drastically reduced my workload from previous years because all of the pandemic safety protocols). Between the sheer amount of work that my toddler is, on top of the peak season workload for a photographer, add the guilt of ‘still not pregnant yet’ (and the sadness that goes along with it), plus the holes in our marriage growing larger by the day, and then the actual day-to-day tasks of running a business (oh right, I’ve got THREE!), nevermind any actual housework, I am spent! I am even in literal physical pain from not being able to take breaks when I need them, and as tired as I am, seem to have insomnia as a reward for pushing through it all. I am spread so darn thin, I don’t even think I have even begun to process the actual pandemic stress of it all. That is a whole other beast in itself.
Being stuck at home just adds cabin fever to the mix, and that never did anybody any good—coming from someone who loves her alone time as much as her monthly networking meetings. I miss human connection (clingy toddler and annoying husband don’t count). I miss my friends. I miss being able to just go out whenever we needed to to avoid a tantrum. I miss being able to make plans on a whim. I miss being able to have the CHOICE to stay home. And there is no end in sight.
I just keep telling myself: It is okay to feel this way. It is okay to ask for help.
But when you have no way to actually get the ‘things’ you really need, what happens then? Simple yet complex things like some “me time” or a break from everything require childcare, which is rather hard to come by (safely) during a pandemic. Everyone who could or would is also working from home or over the age of 60 (too risky with husband working frontlines), or lives of out town which makes it impossible. So we are back to square one: forced to keep moving forward, uphill, with the fuel source running dangerously low, and no station in sight… a fantastic recipe for burnout.
As for the opposite of homesick, the closest thing I could find is the feeling of acedia which is almost like a hybrid of boredom and apathy, with hints of anxiety and laziness. Sounds about right.