I'm writing this post to myself.
It's time to stop with the self depreciation for not working.
Because I do work, I work bloody hard!
I am a benefit claimant, more in the last couple of months than ever before. Every time I see someone post (mostly on facebook), about working to pay for the lazy benefit claimants, I have this incredible guilt. I feel like the post is aimed at me. It's probably not, it's just the way I feel.
Mr. Ojo and I have always worked, I was a working mother of 2 young children. In fact, on my 1st child I was back in work when he was just 7 weeks old. I went through PND, whilst still working. I got bullied at work, that led to me having a breakdown, I still went back.
It was only when my circumstances changed, that I finally had to give up.
I now have 3 sons, 2 of which are on different ends of the autistic spectrum. If you want to understand how hard that can be, come live in my house for a week.
I don't go out, my youngest doesn't like it. I have to buy him a toy, every Friday, just to get him to leave the house and go to school. I have my other child, who really struggles with organising himself. This means I am always, and always have been, on call with the school.
Add to that my youngest has HUGE separation anxiety. He will not be in any room alone. This means the cupboard, under my stairs, has a camping toilet because he won't go upstairs alone. It also means I can't have bunk beds in their (very small) bedroom. He can't sleep if he can't see his brother!
He also doesn't sleep well anyway. So most mornings we are up by 6, at the latest. (I feel the need to point out, he is the sweetest, happiest child, you will ever meet!).
Now, Mr. Ojo is having mobility issues. He has damaged cartilage in his knees, which were operated on yesterday. He has learnt that thanks to this, and the onset of arthritis, he may never walk properly again, and the operation he had yesterday will need to be repeated.
The last few months a lot more responsibility of the day to day running, of our house, has fallen on my shoulders.
The only respite I get, is thanks to my teen. I know I should be pushing him to find a job, but I don't think anyone realises how hard he works for me. His little brother idolises him, so he gives me a break frequently. Sometimes he can see how exhausted I am, and sends me out............you have no idea how much that means to me!
So I do work.
I work bloody hard.
It's time to let the guilt go, to accept that my life is now different.
(and sorry for the text heavy post)