It's so ridiculously easy to become lost in somebody else's dream; to go from the dreamer, to the dreamt and to go from a creator, to the created. It's way too easy to forget that we are our own authorities and that none of our thoughts, feelings or actions need to be co-signed by anyone else. It's so damn easy to forget, but so f*cking important to remember.
Do you ever get lost in daydreams? Do you ever close your eyes and get so swept away by some delicious fantasy or other that it's as though you're really living it? Then something snaps you back to the here and now, and if you're a really good daydreamer, and you were very much 'gone', it's quite a shock to land back here in your present circumstances?
I'm so appreciative of my mom's hard work, the generosity of our guests, family flying in, and my wonderful step kids, but I just need a break from the craziness. I've shut myself in my room to write this right now and am longingly staring at the trees swaying in the wind. I yearn to be calm as they are; I long to be at peace in nature. I need an escape from the noise.
Notice the motif of light used in The Lord of the Rings. The Light of Elendil, given to Frodo by Galadriel, was a light for him in the most dire and hopeless of times, like when he fought off the giant (and hungry) spider that tried to kill and eat him. The spider, an instrument of evil, was scared off by the light.
It is important to learn to say "no" when you feel overwhelmed and to do so without feeling any guilt. This goes in tangent with taking time out for yourself and learning to delegate. If you accept less responsibility and allow others to keep personal responsibility for tasks that inevitably would lie with them anyway then your load will be lighter.
Stress is not a new concept, but we live in an age which is constantly creating fresh varieties of angst to add to our mental in-tray. Caring doesn't sound like it should be one of those in-tray items. But when we become 'carers' and the demands are persistent, even relentless, then the challenges mount.