Through the eyes of a carer for someone with a mental illness

Looking towards Christmas

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106Everyone is starting to look towards Christmas, shops have their Christmas trees out, decorations, gifts and the general yearly atmosphere is beginning to build. I walked through our town centre the other day on the way to my English course, walking through our shopping centre I could see the lights twinkling above me, huge Christmas trees hung from the ceiling and it was feeling quite festive. I walked past the interactive display they always put in the centre for the children and I could feel an ache deep within me, that everyone was looking forward to Christmas and I couldn’t even see towards next week. My mind couldn’t help wandering, thinking how I probably wouldn’t be stood here as a family enjoying the things we tend to do traditionally at this time of year. I doubt very much I would be taking the girls to the Christmas lights switch on and the huge firework display they put on that we go to as a family every year.

Presents are nothing to me, we get them for the children, we don’t go overboard, they appreciate what they have etc. I would normally have just started with the shopping side of things but right now I can’t bring myself to do it. Christmas to me is all about family, so it looks pretty awful when I have no idea where Chris will be for Christmas, if he isn’t with us it just won’t be the same for me. Don’t get me wrong I will try and give the girls the most amazing Christmas I can for their sake, they go through so much and their bravery and courage astounds me every day. I just feel really sad because I am constantly reminded that without all of us there over the Christmas period it isn’t the same. I don’t even want to go out of my way or make others go out of there way so we are not on our own. I am going to tell my parents not to bother if they suggest being around for Christmas. Low key it is this year, if Chris manages to get even a couple of hours leave it will be better than nothing but I have an awful feeling this year’s Christmas present is Chris in a private hospital. ‘Chris has a place in xyz hospital and by the way Happy Christmas’

036Whenever I think about it, it just makes me really upset, probably because it makes me remember Christmas with the girls and Chris when he was better than he is now and how lovely it was and now I don’t even know where that Chris is. I suppose it is like grief, I have lost the Chris I knew, at the moment there are tiny bits of him but I long to speak to the person I once knew. I am sure that whatever happens for the girl’s sake I will make the most of the festive period but it will be far from easy, as I am slowly finding out.

Both photo’s are of our second youngest daughter with Chris.


Author: acarerseyes

I am a mum to four gorgeous girls, and a carer to my former partner of eight years, Chris who has a mental illness, BPD. I blog my experiences.. life is tough! We live in Greater Manchester, UK.

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