Sometimes, I forget how much a difference some of things I say can make to others.
I fall into the trap that it has to be a big, profound, sparkly-sequiney, and possibly quite ranty message for it to have any impact on anyone whatsoever.
Really, what happens is it is the little things, the most innane, and most subtle that have more impact. Or so it seems.
Sometimes, I just get tired.
And wonder what the point of it all is … I mean, for over a decade I have been saying the same things and advocating for the mental and emotional health of mothers, and their families, and all that has happened is things have got worse.
Rates of postnatal and other, general depressions are not going down.
Kids are getting fatter.
Mums are getting more fearful.
Society, generally, is demanding we be more and more and more ‘protective’ of our kids.
Judgement of others, and definitely misconceptions and the like of others is getting worse.
To be honest, there are moments when I feel like I have failed miserably. That nothing I have done has made any difference at all. To anyone.
I’ve been quiet, partly because I feel irrelevant … because for all my efforts, nothing has changed. Well, technically, it has changed; it’s got much worse. Then inside all of that feeling useless, I forget the things that have had an impact on one person. Often just one. Sometimes it’s a few more in a day, or over a week. Sometimes, it’s just one.
Whilst I’m far from content putting a smile on the face of just one person, or, to be extremely cliched, to be okay with saying “If I can change the life of just one person, I’ll be happy”, I know for that person that it is a huge deal.
(I’ve said it before; I’m not and will never be okay with changing the life of just one person. I’d like to be able to change the world, but I’m also far more realstic than that. If I can make a dent, change a discourse, have an impact on many, then I may be slightly more content.)
And just as I forget it’s the teensy little insignificant things that have a sizeable impact on others – in a good way – it, too, is the little things that remind me that I have done something positive for someone.
Sometimes its the unexpected gift and thank you card in the mail. I never expect them, because I don’t do stuff to get stuff in return.
Sometimes it’s the touch on the arm and a very sincere “thank you”. There’s an … essence, I guess, in these thank yous that conveys so much more than just “thank you”.
Sometimes, it’s the sharing of my life; the photos, the stories that just lets one other mum out there know she’s not alone, or that her kids are, indeed, very normal (or, at least as normal as mine … and I’ll shut up now ….)
Sometimes, it’s that I just choose to do something like my Great (in)SANE Inspired Adventure that has an effect on someone.
Sometimes, I have no idea what I’m doing that touches someone in a positive way (not in a weird, creepy, unsolicited way).
(Other times I just have no idea what I’m doing, just in general.)
Sometimes, my forgetting has the opposite affect, and causes people to worry, or think I’ve forgotten about them.
I haven’t forgotten about you. I’ve just been trying to work out how things got worse, and what I can do about it.
Even for one person (or, okay, lots of one persons).