Friday, April 25, 2014

The #FatChick Battles Through #Compassion Fatigue to Find Herself Again #amwriting #MyWANA


Hello my old friends. It's been a long while. So much has happened since my last post of any kind here at Not Enough Time in the Day. Why? As the title of this blog states there just hasn't been enough time in the day to get everything accomplished. 

As you know I have suffered from many health issues and continue to battle them. The last few months I suffered a major relapse, regained weight I'd lost, allowed my diabetes and blood pressure to get way out of control. I was a complete mess and didn't like who I'd become. Not. One. Bit.

As The Vixen and as myself, I have championed many causes from pets to other authors. That tenacious pit bull attitude was a welcome thing to see by people then, but when I turned that attitude around to stick up for myself and stop being a doormat, things went to hell and a hand basket.

I spent too much of my time taking care of everyone else, other groups, promoting other authors and basically letting everything else important to me take a back seat. Hell, I left some things so far behind I thought I'd lost them all together. The real me was one of them.




I blame myself for it. I allowed it to happen. I took on more things than I could handle at once because of some misguided work ethic. I don't like to see things fail. When I commit to something, I hold up my end and that of others to keep everything all flowing. Unfortunately, instead of speaking up and telling those around me I was overwhelmed and could no longer be the back up, I kept working and working and the anger and resentment build up until it finally exploded.


Besides writing under four pen names, I work over forty hours a week as a veterinarian. I literally hold lives in my hands on a daily basis. The stress of that job alone is enough to make anyone crack. It's no wonder that veterinarians have the highest suicide rate than any other profession. I'm not making that up. Veterinarians are "four times as likely" to take their own lives as non-medical professionals, and "twice as likely" as other medical professionals. Click here to read one article on the subject and to find out why. No need for me to go into that in this post other than to say YES I suffer from compassion fatigue. After 21 years of  emergency and general practice in economically challenged areas, it's a given for me and something I have to battle every single day.

To escape that world, I need to immerse myself in my characters and their stories. In the beginning, I was eager to take on new projects to get my name out there. As I built up more of my own following, I joined forces with others to get all of us more exposure. Unfortunately in the middle of that, I lost sight of what's important in all of it—me.

I turned into a person I no longer recognized. Instead of being able to talk things through, I lashed out. I was constantly on edge. I could no longer let things roll off my back. Even the slightest infraction turned into a major production. I spent many nights sobbing uncontrollably, unable to sleep, not understanding I was slowly killing myself. 

Top that with fighting with former partners over idiotic things, misunderstanding each other at every turn, assuming every single thing mentioned anywhere was a slam against me personally, and you get the idea of a small part of what's been going on in my life right now. I looked in the mirror and hated the person I saw glaring back at me. There was no other choice left for me now.

I had to walk away.



I became that person searching for something to continue to be pissed off about. Yes, I did have cause for a lot of it, but that's no excuse for letting everything build up the way I did. It was irresponsible of me to allow it to happen in the first place. I ignored the warning signs that started about a year and half ago. Instead, I thought it would get better if I continued to go with the flow. 

It didn't. Now I've cut ties with some folks, dropped out of projects, and let go of all the bullshit. Now it's up to me to take care of me. I'm keeping The Vixen close to home now on Sassy Vixen Publishing and at Taboo II. She's where she should be. The nickname was given to me by an old high school friend in honor of me busting out of my shy girl shell. While he's no longer in my life, The Vixen will continue to live on as I go back to the basics.

So if you find yourself in similar situations, stop! Cut out all the extra things in your life that really don't matter. YOU are the most important part of the equation. If you find that you've strayed from your original path and you no longer recognize the person in the mirror, CHOOSE to make the changes you need to get YOU back—not the kind of person others what you to be, but who you were born to be.

Until next time,
~Tammy