After years of avoiding my outdoor studio formerly known as the boy’s playhouse, I recreated a new space. Out with the cumbersome desk and in with some comfortable chairs that have occupied various venues in our home. Making this retreat has not only stimulated my creative thought process, but it has provided me with an escape. Please note, that being a mother and a wife doesn’t make me feel imprisoned, but a well-deserved time-out is always on my priority list.
Women are forever imploring themselves to everyone else. We forget to self care and are the first ones to fall prey to the syndrome I call “martyrdom”. Martyrdom can seep in when you least expect it. Symptoms include the back of your hand plastered to your forehead and constantly repeating, “why am I the only one who does everything around here?”. Often, heavy sighs are present. When that syndrome presents itself, I seek solace in my own space. Regrouping and formulating a contingency plan can often shift my perception of my reality versus theirs.
Once in my new happy place, I realize that there are several flaws in my perception. First and foremost, I must ask myself if I communicated effectively. Did I ask for help? Am I assuming that they know what I need? Let us remember that I am dealing with a population of testosterone over here, so my communication has to be short and to the point. They have the attention span of gnats. Slowly, the symptoms of this nasty disease of martyrdom start to disappear and I am able to step back into a more realistic realm of living.
It is only natural that I would develop this condition as it is genetic. My mother has mastered the art to the point that you are not aware of what is happening. She is skilled in her technique. I am not bashing my mother by any means, but merely pointing out the obvious. It has been passed down for generations. Unfortunately, she had girls, so maybe it worked better on us. Boys are a different beast. However, I am happy to shed the illusion of being this martyr, to help our family work as a unit. Besides, I can’t write with my hand plastered to my forehead. Believe me, I have tried.