I have wandered away into the fog for a time and returned. There have been things, though in comparison to some I am sure not so many things, and aren’t we all trying to avoid the “busy” talk?
One of the things was to attend two days of training, through work, in Mental Health First Aid. I really enjoyed the opportunity to be able to do this course. In it we looked at Anxiety Problems, Depression, Substance Abuse, Psychosis, and the variants that fall under those headings, and what to in situations ranging from a crisis to a general concern. Some of those actions one might have done in any case, but it was good build your own confidence that they were the right things to do and you won’t be making a mess, and increase your understanding of the experience of people under these afflictions, as I think uncertainty and no small amount of fear is what prevents many people from stepping in to the mental health arena. (It’s a good thing that there is now so much information in circulation around what not to do and say to those with mental health afflictions, because it’s very UNhelpful, but all that coming at you on social media can be paralysing and deter folks from doing or saying anything.)
I also recently went to a Saturday conference on Infertility, IVF and Pregnancy Loss, run by Canberra Christian Conventions. The day was for those facing these circumstances and for those around them to learn how to comfort them well (obviously - with sessions on the grief of infertility, the ethics of IVF and comfort for those in pregnancy loss), but I was also pleased when one of the presenters listed “social situation” as a cause of infertility, particularly for Christian women, which further justified my attendance. (I do feel like I am circumstantially infertile, particularly so because I am a Christian, as I just didn’t meet a Christian fellow, who took me seriously as a woman and pursued things into meaningful relationship, at the right time. And the truth is, I feel like I wasted a lot of my child-bearing years on passive men who were never going to initiate or lead a relationship anywhere, and I regret that a lot. After past trouble and shame I don’t say hello to single Christian men if they don’t say hello (and if that makes them see me as aloof or unfriendly or disinterested, I think the same of them), so as you might expect there is not a lot of potential for anything to change. I see social infertility as the given state of my life.) It was a good and beneficial day.
Other things have included being a tourist with an old friend who is new to town and making time to catch up with my sister and her gorgeous kids. Good things, though they have meant less time at home to read or ponder or write or be the crazy plant lady.
I was quite looking forward to staying home for Easter and yet having my sister and family in town to catch up with, then they decided just last weekend to go to Victoria to catch up with my brother-in-law’s brother and his wife, so that was a trifle disappointing and the weekend is now looking very quiet, though that is perhaps appropriate for the end of Lent. A few weeks ago a friend who is going to Katoomba Easter convention with her own kids and other friends and their kids had one of the other women and her children in their house pull out and so asked if I would like to go, but the accommodation alone was going to cost me $420, plus registration, food and petrol ... and with some recent unexpected medical expenses (and those services in Canberra being so expensive as a result of the high median income level here!) that was too much money. But I have a lot of DIY projects to do around the house, so I have made a list and am going to derive some satisfaction from getting those done in the extra time. If I don’t feel the urge to spend hours reading and writing ...