Verbal Processing: Tax Season & Depression

Every year it comes and every year I start the season out in a very dark place.  I’m writing this because I need a safe place to sort my thoughts, bare my heart a little bit and be real with what I am feeling.  I am a verbal processor and while I’m writing this down and not saying it out loud, it helps me by putting it some place.  I am not writing this to make it seem like my situation is worse off than others.  I know all too well that there are some of you reading this who may have your spouse deployed, traveling constantly for business, working insane hours or simply not there.  I am so sorry for your pain.  I feel it too and so wish that we didn’t share that with each other.  There will always be someone better off or worse off than me; I know and understand this.  Please, if you feel like commenting remember that my purpose in writing this is to help me process my feelings safely.  I have a natural ability for leadership and my mood affects those around me.  Sending this out into Cyber Space protects those I love from feeling this darkness.  It helps me get what I need to say “out” while protecting them from me word vomiting all over them.
My awesome hubby is an accountant.  Every year since 2005, the Christmas and New Year season ends in a very dark place for me.  I know everyone feels the emotional let down when Christmas is over; I feel it too on top of anticipation of yet another tax season.  There are some women who are awesome on their own.  They can fill their time with friends, parent easily without losing it and can manage the house all without needing a break.  I am not one of those women.  I need my husband and not to steal a perfectly cheesy line from a movie but he “completes me.”  We are complete opposites of each other and that’s the beauty of our marriage.  Where I am weak, he is strong and vice versa.  When he is missing from my life I feel extremely lonely.
What brought all of this on for me?  I realized today, while we were at church, that tomorrow starts his “long” day at work.  This means he’ll go into work at about  7:30am and he’ll be home hopefully by 10pm.  This time will only increase the closer we get to April 15th (or this year April 17th; thanks for extending it Mr. Federal Gov’t).  Most of the other days start with him leaving the house around 7am and getting home hopefully by 6pm.  That’s not too bad and yes it could be much worse.  He’s trying to work from home on Saturdays this year as often as he can because the older my son, Buggie, gets the more he wants and needs his daddy.  My hubby’s very involved as a dad so his absence is really noticed by us all.
I also struggle with depression.  It’s under control.  I wish to not debate over the correct method of control because I have been in the deepest, darkest pit of depression and seen how it could affect my children.  I will never go back nor will I mess with something that works.  This season, every year, is really difficult for me in my struggle with depression.  I am a social person and as my husband goes to work every day and the work load becomes more demanding we see him less.  Other people may go through the same thing and can handle it.  I, for some reason, cannot.  I am the pursuer in the majority of my relationships and I’m okay with this; however, this time of year makes me incredibly insecure.  So my feelings of insecurity and loneliness only intensifies the depression I already have a predisposition for.
How am I going to combat all of this?  Writing about it has already helped.  After getting all of this off of my chest I already feel ten times better.  I feel less alone.  I’m also going to get over myself and buck up.  Yes, here’s my pep talk:  Keep things in perspective – It’s not that bad; it’s only ten weeks.  Prepare for the tough times – I’m escaping the last week of tax season to my parents’.  (In a perfect world I’d live closer – as in 30 to 40 minutes to them, my sister and her husband.  I don’t ever foresee that happening though.  I married a Minnesota boy through and through.)  Prayer Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Phil. 4: 6 – 7)   Being proactive – rather than sitting alone I’ll continue to be proactive and make that first call.  Rather than waiting to be pursued, I will continue to pursue the friendships that I so need.

If you’ve stayed with me this entire time, thanks for reading.  Like I said in the beginning, I wrote this primarily for myself as a way of collecting my thoughts.

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Elizabeth "Bert" Anderson is a stay-at-home mom of three living outside of the Twin Cities in Rogers. She's the author behind the blog First Time Mom, where she honestly chronicles the peaks and valleys of parenting. Even though she has more than one child, Bert maintains that whether you have one child or five, there's a first time for everything. She's a lover of cloth diapers, pop culture, healthy living and fitness.

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Posted in postpardum depression
  • rebecca

    Awww…I feel your pain! I also wish tax season wasn’t so long and/or it came in the summer (as opposed to the already-depressing long Minnesota winter). Please know that I’m here for you anytime you want to call. I’m sorry I’m not closer, and I’ll try to be the pursuer more too… I love you!!!

  • rebecca

    …and I’ve been thinking since I wrote my comment–I forgot to add that this was very well written!

  • Heather Crafts

    Oh, Bert, I think you have wrote about my life and my heart! My husband travels a lot for his work. I told him point blank when we got married that I was not going to be the wife of a traveling husband. I think the family needs to have the mom and dad around. But alas that dream was not to be. It started with a week here and there when the kids were very tiny. I would cry because I was so lonely. Even if my friends and family were willing to spend time with me they all have their own lives and need to do their own things, they don’t really have time to be with me. Not because of any other reason that but that is just the way life goes. Later, he started traveling more and more. Now, he’s gone about 50 precent of the time. It doesn’t get less lonely and I haven’t gotten more used to it I have just learned to not cry through it and to just rely on God. I also suffer from mental illness, for me it’s anxiety. To help with that, I found a sweet girl that came to my house, for a very little money, and help me out. She was such a doll and a God send. Now that the kids are older, they are much less difficult because they can care for themselves, help around the house, and they are better company. I still miss my husband desperately when he’s not around. But what could be better than to love your husband so much that you long for his companionship! That’s a good thing! And a God thing.

    I’m not sure why I just told you all that other than I wanted you to know, as you know, you are not alone. I will pray for you over the next few months because I empathize and God will carry you through. He’s good like that — but that’s nothing you don’t know. :)

    I also want to thank you for baring your heart in this post. It is comforting to know that someone understands how I feel.

    I hope the tax season seems to go by in a flash and that God will comfort you and bring you joy!

    • The FTM

      Thanks Heather! Your words of encouragement are definitely appreciated.

  • Bri Sherman

    I verbal process as well. So I totally understand the need to do this. I always tell my hubby – be forewarned, this is probably going to end up on my blog. ;)


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