Missing my mojo

Passion. Blogging about what I’m passionate about, ought to be easy, right?

Wrong. When I sat down and pondered what I’m passionate about for Dotterel’s BMB blogging carnival, I realised that I don’t really know. I don’t really seem to be driven by passion atm, it’s as much as I can do to whip up a mild enthusiasm. I’m putting this down mainly to the continuing exhaustion of a non sleeping toddler in the house, along with the round the clock home education of two more children, but really that’s just an excuse.

I’ve lost the plot. I don’t know what I want to do with my life. I have no focus, no drive, no direction. I get through the days wondering if it’s bedtime yet, and the nights desperate for another hour’s sleep before the next feed, dreading waking up to find it’s already morning, and I’m still tired.

Always tired. I even went to the doctor about it, and he told me to go for a bloodtest. That’s going to happen, isn’t it, someone with a needle phobia is going to get up early in the morning and make it to the local hospital to be voluntarily punctured. Hm. Not really.

So I might be a bit run down, but it seems odd that I can run 3.5 miles and finish barely out of breath, but still be just tired all the time.

Maybe the problem *is* that I’m missing passion. Perhaps passion is what gives you energy to pick yourself up, smile and face the day with the feeling that you might just win. In which case, I need to find it again. I do remember having it once. When I was young, I was passionate about writing, about poetry, about being a vet. I lost the last one first, when I didn’t get the grades, but I was still writing poetry well into my 20s. I even got published once. Really published, and got paid for it too. And I was writing fiction up until I got a real job and then I diverted my energy into that, into being the best programmer, getting promotions the quickest, and balancing my career with having a family.

Somehow, somewhere along the way, the passion for life drained away.

Maybe it went a couple of years ago when my sister died. Perhaps it started to drip earlier when I had the first miscarriage. Can I hope it’s only dormant? That somewhere in me, there is still a tiny flame, that one day I’ll find a source of fuel and it will reignite and sweep me to some grand achievement, and I’ll know I was worth something. Worth anything. Because that’s the sneaking fear. That I’m pointless. That what I say and think and feel doesn’t matter to any more ppl than my family and my children. That when I’m gone no one will remember me, that my words are spoken in the wrong direction at the wrong time, and instead of being taken up, echoed and amplified, they are whipped away on a wind of indifference.

Perhaps my passion is just drowned out right now in grief and fear. Perhaps it’s time I dug a little deeper and found a way to let it out again.

Yes, perhaps it’s time.

About Jax Blunt

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  1. Wish I could say something profound, but all I can say is that I love reading your blog and following your tweets as you always make me think. You definitely make a difference to my life. So whilst you may feel you are lacking passion, your blog and tweets don’t. Thank you for being so interesting and for the Twitter conversations we have.
    Geeky Mummy recently posted…8 Best Must Have Mobile Phone AppsMy Profile

  2. hugs jax xx I know my passion has taken a huge hit since my sister died, as it takes a huge amount of emotional energy to keep going through the day, and give that extra that the children need and balance it with work etc.
    I know that actually only my children and grandchildren will remember me, and that is fine.
    But when you are feeling emotionally unresilient, everything seems difficult, and pointless. But you are not Jax, and ultimately most people are only remembered and loved by close friends and family, and making a difference is important on a small scale with these people that care, even if a grand/large scale seems more important.
    HelenHaricot recently posted…Historyetc – Mycenae- Trojan War- OlympicsMy Profile

    • have changed the name over to reflect the commenter ๐Ÿ™‚

      Pondering a response – have started and deleted several times now. Back later perhaps.

  3. http://Allie says

    Interesting stuff. I don’t think I’ve ever had quite that sort of passion. Perhaps not everyone does? But I guess that if you do then you know when it’s missing!

    I do love to write and it’s lovely to have some time for that now the children are older. I didn’t do any for years and years when they were little. But I’m not ambitious for it – it’s just a joy in itself. Recognition is nice though ๐Ÿ˜‰

    But when it comes to what makes people ‘worth something’ I really don’t feel that’s anything to do with grand achievements. What we are worth to each other – loving and being loved – that’s the stuff of real life. That’s the point, I reckon.

    • @Allie I’m not sure everyone does – some ppl are happy to be content iyswim. But I feel there is something missing in me.

      And I do know what you mean by grand achievements not actually being the point of life, but it was kind of what I always dreamed of. Doing some big, something to really make a difference. Something that mattered.

  4. Jax, do you think you could be actually depressed? I think your doctor may have missed some nuances of your conversation if he is only thinking of physical causes.

    (But then I only really care what effect I have on my friends and family, and couldn’t give a toss if I am forgotten when I’m gone.)
    Alison recently posted…Groundhog WeekMy Profile

    • @Alison I don’t think so – but if I were, I possibly wouldn’t be the best placed to recognise it. I do think the doctor wasn’t really paying attention anyway.

      If I am, I’m still sure that the cure lies within me finding something that I enjoy doing and doing it ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Most of the people i know are feeling like this atm. I heard John Cougar Mellencamp on the radio the other month (Jack & Diane) and this line jumped out at me:

    “Oh yeah life goes on
    Long after the thrill of livin is gone”

    Made me wonder if it’s an age thing.

  6. That was a beautiful post, really touching and it gave me a huge lump in my throat. The fact that you can write your heart out like that shows you have reserves of passion that are alive and kicking. ((hugs)) xxxxxxx :O)
    kay wilkinson recently posted…Fishy Plans Afoot on The Good Ship Brink of BedlamMy Profile

  7. Maybe, or maybe it’s like with a relationship that’s gone past the honeymoon period, iyswim? That feeling of unbridled passion is pretty much impossible to sustain, but you settle into a different, more contented – dare I say more realistic – rhythm? When you’re younger you see the world with fresh eyes; everything is possible, but as you get older your sight can become somewhat jaded, and you lose some of the sense of being able to set the world on fire I guess. I don’t know though, as I’ve never really had that feeling – I’m more of a drifter than a goal setter/scorer, so I don’t think I feel the loss as keenly as you obviously do.

    • @Tech interesting way of looking at it. I guess I am just raging a little about the loss – although I suspect it’s my drifter side coming through meaning that I’m not doing the achieving I so want to.

  8. first, what Geeky Mummy said.

    Secondly, I always listen to those lines that Tech quoted from Jack and Diane.. because I don’t really get it! Blimey, Keenan and Macarthy managed to stay wanting to live, Mandella never lost the joy of living, despite years of wrongful incarceration!

    Thirdly… I felt like this a bit a little while back. a bit ‘is this ALL there is?’ (to quote another song!) I don’t know if it was post baby hormones or what… But I do know I see my role as a wife and mother to be my vocation… I just had to reconect with it I think…

    I do know what you mean though. I accept I’ll never be a prima donna now, or win Hickstead. But maybe I can still climb a mountain? ๐Ÿ˜€

    • @Mamacrow I do think I want more than partner/mothering. Because in those roles I define myself through other ppls needs, and I’d like there to be some of me independent of that. Does that make sense? Not that I think less of the caring/being/supporting/loving but I would like to find a little space for me apart from them. It could be partly post baby hormones, it could partly be my age/ life stage, it could be that I don’t have external employment atm and I am used to that – I don’t know. But yes, is this *all* there is (which song is that btw?) is a sapping feeling.

  9. Well, there are plenty of simple checklists, like the Burns Depression Checklist – http://www.suicideforum.com/bdc/index.html – that might give you more of an idea whether you’re in the ‘normal’ range or not. I remember Millie posting on FP and someone suggesting one of these “am I depressed?” tests, and it was a real turning point for her.

    “And I do know what you mean by grand achievements not actually being the point of life, but it was kind of what I always dreamed of. Doing some big, something to really make a difference. Something that mattered.”

    I think the little things matter too, Jax.
    Alison recently posted…Groundhog WeekMy Profile

    • @Alison I will have a look at that checklist (though depressing place to find it!). I’m not saying little things don’t matter, but I want a grand achievement too. I think. In as much as I am wanting anything.

  10. I wonder if having young children is having the effect on you that it has on me. It’s a real paradox. They give me such joy and give me a reason for living, a “point to it all” but still they suck the energy and life out of me each day. Lack of sleep is a major factor but we as mothers of young children (and home educators) we are doing a job where there is never any feeling of completeness, of “job done”. It is also difficult to even feel pride in the job we do – in “them” as the good stuff is just the way they are (we don’t own them after all) and the bad stuff is our fault. The burden of guilt and things we could/should be doing is huge and a huge part of our day is incredibly mundane as far as running a household is concerned, where any sense of job satisfaction in that way (cooking or cleaning) is undone in moments.
    It doesn’t make for a great job description in those ways.
    I have a friend who is battling minor depression and she says she battles lack of energy by forcing herself to do things she feels too tired to do and if it is depression that causes her to feel tired she feels better by doing whatever it is, but if it is sheer tiredness she feels worse and then knows to take it easier. Simple idea but it’s helping her.
    Difficult. I love being with my kids more than anything else in the world but you are right about passion. Sometimes a passion away from the children gives me more energy to enjoy them.
    I’m probably way off the mark for you but that’s where I’m at.
    You write so well and you clearly have so much to offer and so much that you could do in many areas to “make a difference.” There are different times for different things perhaps.
    Oh and you might want to look at lack of vitamin B12. http://www.progressivehealth.com/depression-vitamins.asp
    Hope there might be something there but if there isn’t I’ll just send a hug instead!
    Lins recently posted…At what priceMy Profile

    • @Lins there’s lots there. Thanks for taking the time to think it through and write it up so clearly. Today I have tried to do some of the things and I am feeling more energy and satisfaction in life, so perhaps it is an element of depression. Black dog, get thee behind me!

      And I’ll look into the vitamins. I’m aware as a veggie I struggle to keep a good dietary balance anyway, I need to know more about nutrition overall.

      And hugs always gratefully accepted.

  11. I have read through these comments and they all make a lot of sense. I’m not good at being profound, not good at anything really except loving my kids, and have never felt the kind of passion you talk about – I think I probably had it beaten out of me as a child…

    I do know what it’s like to be tired all the time though, to wake up and hope it’s not morning yet, that you can just get another ten minutes sleep before you have to get up and feed the baby. That is my life at the moment too! I have to get up at 5.30 (to feed somebody else’s baby!) and find myself shattered all the time. It’s not a good feeling and yes any passion I may have had for my work, my children’s HE and most other things has fizzled away slowly over the months. Maybe its something really simple as needing more totally unbroken sleep Jax and will resolve itself once smallest is older? Sorry I’m not much help…

    • @Linda every comment on this thread has helped me, every person reaching back to me as I reach out. Thank you for the time you’ve taken to connect.

      Lack of sleep has a lot to answer for, and I do think that is a large part of it atm. Think Smallest is going to find herself being nightweaned sooner rather than later.

  12. I too think that decent sleep makes a massive difference. You lose sight of that when you haven’t had good sleep for months or years.

    I also wonder, Jax, if , as a child, you had a lot of people telling you you could/should/would do something ‘major’ in your adult life? I think lots of academically able children get that from teachers – either said overtly or implied all the time. I suspect it’s often motivated by teachers hitting middle age and shifting their own ambitions onto the lives of their pupils.

    I went to a school where we were streamed and those of us in the top stream were always being given the message that we were to be the ‘achievers’ in life. I don’t think it really had much impact on me (possibly because I’m a bit of a Bagpuss personality and also no genius!) but I think it was intended to inject that drive into us.

    I suppose it doesn’t matter where it comes from -if it’s something you want then you should go for it. I’m currently living through something that’s reminding me that this is our only go on the roundabout and if you’re not happy then grab chances to change that.

    Good luck with it all. x

    • @Allie yes I went to an academic girls school, and there was an awful lot of being told about our futures, our careers, expectations, achievements. I suppose that sort of thing ingrains itself in your psyche, and if it’s then a drive you can’t satisfy it isn’t going to help. Especially, I guess, if it’s a drive you wouldn’t have come to by yourself.

  13. Perhaps it’s time? Definitely time if you feel like that Jax ๐Ÿ™‚

    I think ascertaining ones passions is a hugely important thing to do. I have no desire to change the world, but a burning desire to change *my* world whenever it feels like it needs changing. Sometimes in small ways sometimes (like now) in great big huge ways.

    Find something you are passionate about every day, however small. I think you do do that Jax – you are passionate about feeding your children – home cooked meals or from your own breast and you do that every day. You are passionate about reading, you do that every day for yourself and to the baby. You are passionate about trying to fundraise for a library and you are finding ways to make that happen.

    At lunch last week with a friend who is dying she was telling me about how she has short term goals and long term goals now. She is realistic about how the long term goals may not happen and there is a lot out of her control as to whether they do but she is in charge of the short term goals. I think there is something there we can all learn from. Certainly have a long term goal to get something published one day but make your short term goal to enjoy the writing for now. Have a long term goal for the sort of parent you want to have been to the children while they are young and enjoy the short term goals of enjoying this day with them today.

    • @Nic thank you. I’m really not convinced I would have the courage to make the sweeping changes you are making atm, I doff my cap to you. I should take a little more time to look at what I am achieving as well as the mountain of things I’m not though, so thanks for that perspective.

      Long term and short term goals – I feel a spate of listmaking coming on….

  14. I know I lost all passion when I had that horrible experience 5 years ago. The oddest thing is how much my urge to create and do and enjoy has come back in the face of real and proper grief. Since I lost Freddie, I feel almost compelled to grab and things and do better. I couldn’t have done that before. I don’t know how to suggest that anyone else can get it. I think it just comes and goes. Enough sleep helps. Driving out of comfort zones and connecting with the real helps. Getting some new influences helps. I’m driven to meet new people just lately, to drive myself out of a sad place I inhabit when among people who care about that place.

    I’ve written lists – I will do this number of things each month, one of this, one of that. I’m making myself do them. It helps.
    Merry recently posted…Mourning TimeMy Profile

  15. I am not sure what to say as only you know how you feel. You have always seemed a very passionate and inspiring lady to me when I read your blog.

    You will be in my prayers Jax.

    Mich x
    Michelle Twin Mum recently posted…Pick of the New Parenting Bloggers- part 2My Profile

    • @Mich thank you. Maybe a large part of what I need to do is to learn to see myself through others’ eyes and be a little gentler on myself too.

  16. http://Kirsty says

    sending a hug Jax. Nothing much to add but wanted to say that yes the little things do matter just as much as the big things and actually might seem pretty big to others even if not to yourself.

    • @Kirsty You have no idea how much I wish we still lived just around the corner so that I could witter on in person and you could tell me over a cuppa when I’m being daft!

  17. I’ve loved this poem since before I became a mother. And after this stressful month I’ve had with the kids, I truly believe everything we do to keep them safe and well matters more than anything else in the world.

    We all live on in the memories of those whose lives we’ve impacted on, for better or worse. Yes, there are ‘famous’ people, but considering there have been billions of people alive at one time or another, very few are remembered en-mass for anything they’ve done, but billions are remembered by their loved ones.

    One Hundred Years From Now
    Author: (excerpt from “Within My Power” by Forest Witcraft)

    One hundred years from now
    It won’t matter
    What kind of car I drove
    What kind of house I lived in
    How much money I had in the bank
    Nor what my cloths looked like
    The world may be a little better
    Because, I was important
    In the life of a child.

  18. Jax I know exactly what you mean –
    ‘I do think I want more than partner/mothering. Because in those roles I define myself through other ppls needs, and Iรขโ‚ฌโ„ขd like there to be some of me independent of that.’

    wifing and mothering is my vocation, it stretches me in so many ways and uses all my gumption. However, I also want ‘just me’ achievements, hurdles for me to clear, challenges.

    Which is why I took up the karate – something i thought was too dificult for me to do – and am now an orange belt, and why I said I’d do the 3k run in December (a HUGE challenge for me because I don’t ‘do’ running, but more of that later – am going to blog about it!)

  19. Seems you and I both need to dig deep and find what it is that is missing in our lives.. this passion will come back in, but we need to relax into ourselves to find it.
    PippaD @ A Mothers R recently posted…Where is my PassionMy Profile

    • Am slightly sad that there is someone in the same boat as me, but at the same time, perhaps we can help each other a little. I’ve had some fab comments on this thread, well worth a read through. Hugs.

  20. I think we all lose our passion bringing up children there is no room for ‘ourselves’ but do cut yourself some slack, you do work a more than full time job!!
    Home education, getting up in the night etc etc no wonder you are always tired!! Me too but I only work2 nights! I sometimes think I must have a terminal illness to feel so tired!
    When the children are older your passion will return with vigour!! I have so much I want to do when my daughter is older but without wishing her time away.
    I’m so sorry about your sister. She must have been young. So sad. You have a lot

    on. Be kind to yourself. X x

    I have experienced, as many of us have, loss and trying to find something for me but it’s hard with children growing up. They need us mums there all the time so there is no time for us to really do anything else.
    Check out my blog http://www.purpletrumpet.blogspot.com x

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