Friday, February 24, 2012

Sleep, Therapy, and Sleep Therapy

Today I woke from wonderously restful, extra sleep, gave my youngest a happy birthday kiss and extended my middle finger to the dusting of snow (the white devil) that fell over night, I realized that I have been a walking zombie for weeks.  It has me eager to find the cause so I can get my mojo back.  Or at very least, have the large amounts of caffeine I am consuming, touch my exhaustion. 
When I first decided to go back to college, I knew it would not be without it's challenges, but I was imagining things much differently than they have gone.  It's not the work itself, I only go to class two nights a week, and the homework is pretty manageable.  It's the fact that none of my other responsibilities have been eased or helped along.  Some nights I get home from class a half hour before my kids bedtime, and they still have homework to do, and need to eat.  And usually at that point, I haven't eaten in a few hours myself, so the chaos of trying to manage three lives and still be a nurturing listener to my three favorite men becomes a jumbled mess of nice to see you for five minutes, I'm drained.  See you for five minutes in the morning.  Work isn't always as slow as I'd like it to be either.  One of the reasons I knew I could do OK if I went back to school is that work has such slow stretches that I figured I could get most of my homework done at work.  Some weeks that goes smoothly, a lot of weeks, not.  So that puts extra stress on me to try and stay up late to read, wherein I end up nodding off every few minutes, not really ideal for retaining what I am reading! 
The whole weight loss thing is not exactly top priority to me right now, because I feel, somedays, that I am barely afloat.  But I did do really well this week, despite my energy level feeling lower than it's been in years.   There were plenty of times when I felt like just giving in, telling myself that it would boost my energy level, and I could regroup after.  Logic prevailed over those times, as I reminded myself of my health concerns that got me started on this journey in the first place.  I have never been very good at telling myself no when I want something.  Whether or not I can afford it, if I want it, I will get it somehow.  Food is no different. 
My class on adolescence has really opened my eyes and opened the doors to healing a lot of things for me, things I had slight imperceptions about, or things that were colored by my own misjudgements or emotional perceptions.  While it is uplifting in the end, I have to go into very dark and hurtful places in order to get the upliftment and understanding.  The depth of the emotional journey is exhausting.  Don't get me wrong, I knew I would eventually have to visit these things somewhere in my life, I always thought it would happen on a therapist's couch, but I knew I couldn't just be the hurt little girl with a tough facade forever.  It would be like those people who have broken fingers that jut out in odd angles and never get them fixed.  I always think, how can you walk around broken, don't you have the desire to be fixed?  I never turned my finger back on myself, though I always knew there were parts of me that were broken, that I would eventually need to confront in order to fix them.  I think sometimes I am more afraid of going through the therapy than the fix itself. 
So, last night I blew things a little bit.  Work had been going pretty smoothly, I was able to get some homework done, and had started to do some much-needed organization around my store.  Then, about 2:30 pm my boss called to say that she got notification that we need to inventory the entire optical.  No problem, I say, dreading having to count more than a thousand frames and even more accessories.  5pm.  What?!   I pulled it off, because I am awesome, but I was muttering uglies under my breath the whole time.  Needless to say, my stress level was extremely elevated by the time I punched out.  Then a text to my husband as to whether he picked up the boys from the sitter.  He got done with work at 2, I get done at 5'ish.  No answer to my text.  Must be napping, must be nice.  I called him, he was indeed napping and was just about to leave to go pick them up.  I hide my irritation and tell him, I am already out and I will do it.  The sitter is fairly close to my work, less than 5 miles away, so it isn't a big deal.  And honestly, my kids are therapeudic for me, I was looking forward to seeing them, even if they were fighting.  Then something that never happens in Green Bay, traffic jam.  Some idiot with a gun was causing a hostage/stand-off situation on a nearby street, causing traffic to flood the street I was on.  It took me so long to get to my kids, which gave me extra time to fume.  I took my irritation out on thoughts of my husband.  I had a rough day, why couldn't he just pick up the kids?  How is it he always gets so much time to himself and I get none?  Why do I have to do everything?  The usual flood of apathy that washes over me when I am stressed out.  Not fair to my husband, because I do not let him know what I need, which is why I never say such disrespectful things to his face.  When I finally did get my kids, they were showered with kisses and we got in the car.  Then they began to whine and cry that we didn't get to go to the Reading Spree at school, and I had that aweful feeling in me that I had failed them because I was working and didn't bring them.  In all fairness, they never expressed interest in it until that very moment, or I would have made my husband bring them.  As a way to make it up to them, I offered to bring them to the convenience store so they could pick out some snacks, and promised I would read them some books when we got home (even though they are quite capable of reading).  By the time we were picking out snacks for them, the soft, squishy brownies were staring me right in the eye.  I passed them up, thinking, it's not the weekend yet.  But before we left, I grabbed them.  I was so strung out on stress and apathy, that I reached a moment where I really felt like I needed those brownies in order to go on.  It could be worse, I could have turned to drugs.  Ok, that last part was a joke, but I did eat those brownies in the block that it took to get home, and they did their job of getting me off the proverbial ledge.  I told myself that was enough, and I was going to behave the rest of the night, but as soon as my husband left to do errands, I stuffed food with reckless abandon.  Tortilla chips with nacho cheese, and sugared ceral with almond milk.  I ate just enough to take the edge off my day, then I got the kids to bed and fell into a coma myself.  Since the kids had the day off school today, I took the opportunity to sleep in, skip my workout, and have a relaxing start to the day.  I felt rejuvinated from the extra sleep.  I don't remember the last time I got to sleep until 6:30 on a weekday.  And the internal dialogue for breakfast was about whether or not to just be done with the keto and have a piece of wheat toast with my eggs and turkey bacon, and logic and reason prevailed.  Even though I had my little episode last night, I feel strong and good today.  And maybe using food for therapy isn't the evil it is made out to be, as long as it doesn't happen on a regular basis.  In the end, everything comes out OK, and I know I can handle whatever life throws at me.  Sometimes, it just takes a brownie to get through it.  And I'm completely fine with that!
Have a great weekend, friends!

2 comments:

  1. Girl, you exhaust me -- and I work two jobs (plus anything else I can pick up).

    :-) Sleep is our friend. Hope you find time to nap this weekend.

    Pearl

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  2. Pearl, in the rare, stolen moments that I get to read your blog, it is very therapeutic for me. And not in the painful way!

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