As the time came for me to choose a new car seat for our 15-month old little girl, it dawned on me just how big of a part depression plays in my life when it comes to spending money.
I’m already aware just how much my depressive tendency has contributed to my past debts, but even now I can feel myself being susceptible to the power of guilt.
Obviously no parent wants to *just* go for the cheapest option despite any safety implications – which is probably why the car seat industry is just so massive. Advice tells us never to buy second hand – understandably because we can never be sure if the integrity of the seat has been compromised in a previous collision. With the voice of depression always whispering ‘what if’ (even when I’m not depressed) I find myself in a minefield of choice, surrounded by shiny new seats that all look the same.
I’d already done my research on the difference between forward and rearward-facing seats, and was surprised that the latter was rarely seen in high street stores. A very informative program that we happened to catch on t.v. recently further emphasised just how much safer the rearward facing seats are, which cemented the idea firmly in my mind.
This is exactly the problem I have – when I believe in something so strongly, it is impossible for me to settle for less. I know myself too well, and believe that if we suffered from any sort of crash at any point in the future, I would *never* forgive myself – Ever. It’s not the sort of guilt that any parent would obviously feel. This is the sort of guilt that would destroy me from the inside out. Without wanting to go all melodramatic on you, my life would literally be over – even if everyone came out of this unscathed.
Just knowing that I *could* have chosen a seat that is said to be 5 times safer than its forward facing counterpart would be enough to torture my mind. I don’t believe everyone has this negativity inside them, but anyone else who suffers or has suffered from depression will know what I am talking about. With someone else’s voice of reason telling me ‘but it’s OK because no-one was hurt’, depression would clamber back out of me and chew up their words for breakfast. Trust me, I would change and we would all hate me.
So.. we’ve ended up buying the car seat that fulfils my need to know I did the best I could, even though it did cost more than the ones you see in Mothercare.
Depression is happy, my guilt is squashed, and our little girl can ride out our journeys for another few years.
(Yeah – it’s Isofix.. the instruction video for the belted one made me want to cry!)