Guilt. Fear. Stress. Shame. Loneliness. This is what I’m feeling.
I feel guilty that I haven’t written here in over a week. I feel guilty that I haven’t listed anything new in my store in several months. I feel guilty that I’ve barely been able to do any work for my business since the beginning of the year. I feel guilty about the financial impact it is having on my family. I feel guilty that my biggest show of the year is approaching and all I’ve done so far is just tell people I’m going to be there. I feel guilty that I have zero shows confirmed for the rest of the year and only one application pending. I feel guilty that I have done nothing today except watch my TV shows that recorded last night.
I feel fear when I think about writing here again after missing so many days. I feel fear when I think about photographing and listing new jewelry in my store. I feel fear when I think about my upcoming show. I feel fear when I think about what the next few months will be like if I don’t sell enough at ECCC or online. I feel fear when I think about the impact of missing out on other shows this year. I feel fear that even if I do get into the shows I need, I’ll take a loss and be worse off than before.
I feel stressed when I can’t follow through with my commitments. I feel stressed that it will change people’s opinion of me, that they will like me less. I feel stressed when I can’t be what my business needs. I feel stressed about money. I feel stressed when I feel unprepared. I feel stressed when others have expectations of me. I feel stressed that I can’t live up to them, that I’ll let them down. I feel stressed that I’m what’s holding my business back from growing into what it could be.
I feel shame when I don’t shower regularly. I feel shame when I have to choose between a shower or clean laundry/paying bills/shipping orders/etc. because I only have so much energy to spend. I feel shame when I can’t play with Joxer or walk Joxer or pet Joxer when he is asking so hard and so eagerly. I feel shame when my health interferes with sex and intimacy with my husband. I feel shame about the hemorrhoids and other complications from my IBS with constipation, including the messiness when my meds/diet work too well. I feel shame when my closest “friends” are my massage therapists because I see them more often than my “real” friends.
I feel lonely being at home all the time. I feel lonely when the only times I’ve seen friends in months is when I’m working the same show as them. I feel lonely when it’s been a month or two or more since I’ve seen any of my friends outside of work. I feel lonely when my only contact with family and friends and the outside world is through social media. I feel lonely when social media shows me that I wasn’t invited. I feel lonely deep, deep down because of my parents abandoning me, abusing me, and/or forgetting me. I feel lonely because the people who were supposed to love me, don’t.
I feel shame that the love of my husband and his parents isn’t enough to fill my loneliness.
I feel stressed that people won’t like me or accept me as I am, faults and illnesses and all.
I feel fear whenever I think about reaching out to my friends, because what if they don’t care for me as much as I care for them?
I feel guilty when my husband worries that he isn’t doing enough to help, because he already bears more than he should and more than most people would.