As E's refusal to sleep through the night enters it's fifth month, I am finding it harder and harder to power through the sleep deprivation. There have been mornings when the sound of the alarm clock actually brought tears to my eyes. When I finally drag myself out of bed it is a wild whirlwind of activity as M feeds L his oatmeal, I take care of the baby, M takes his shower and leaves for work and I turn on Curious George so that L is occupied while I slap on some make-up and try to put together an outfit that doesn't make it look like I just crawled out of bed. I have to write everything down at work or else I will forget. I have forgotten and, as a result, been late for two meetings this week. I am no longer fun to be around, not that I go out. If I did, I would be grumpy and probably have mascara on my cheeks from rubbing my eyes. Most evenings I make dinner, eat dinner, do laundry/dishes and then go to bed. M helps, he really does, but sometimes just doing it yourself is easier than telling someone how to do it. I had to ask myself this question: in my quest to be the modern, do-everything-working-mom, have I screwed myself out of getting help from others? Have I locked myself into such a tight schedule and routine that it's difficult to stop and let someone else lend a hand? Will it really, really matter if M picks out E's clothes instead of me???
I knew that I had gotten into a bad pattern when I caught myself stress eating. I never stress eat. I have been known to stress shop, although that has stopped since we're watching our pennies these days. I have been known to bite my nails or make irrational decisions about my hair style, but never stress eat. Without even thinking about it, I ate a box of chocolates that a co-worker was selling as a fundraiser for some little league team. I have been working so hard to lose my pregnancy weight and have made really good strides as I am now only 10 lbs away from my goal and this new hobby of mine could ruin everything. How did I let it get so bad?
Every time you open up a women's magazine you see all of these stress relief tips. You can meditate, count to 10, make a list, breathe a scent, etc.. I only know one person who actually practices meditation to ease stress. One. The rest of us are either ignoring the advice or reading the article while eating fundraising chocolates.
I know I'm not alone and I know that my problems are not special or real problems, for that matter, but I miss who I was. I want my brain back. I want my ability to form a coherent thought back. I need to figure out a way to rise above this and maintain at least a little bit of sanity so that my family won't disown me.
So, what do you do when you are stressed? I mean, what do you really do?