Eyes wide open 

Life’s little cruel joke…insomnia when you are exhausted!  Like the days weren’t long enough…oh no…let’s relive every moment in a never ending loop the second you Close your eyes. Let’s grab the phone every 1/2 hour only to say to yourself if I go to sleep right now I can still get 6 hours sleep. Then 4, then 3 and then the thoughts shift to I am going to be so tired tomorrow. At least this thought gives you something new to worry and be anxious over. 

Even my dog is annoyed I am up–again. I swear she just moaned, rolled over and put her paw over her eyes. Then she began snoring. Even the dog can sleep! 

So what does one do when they are   wide awake at unholy hours? They google insomnia. And Bam! Here’s what I see

Well hell…about 99.9% of those words nail my current state. 

So I google stress:

Chronic stress disrupts nearly every system in your body. It can shut down your immune system, upset your digestive and reproductive systems, raise blood pressure, increase the risk of heart attack and stroke, speed up the aging process and leave you vulnerable to many mental and physical health problems. 

Shouldn’t have done that! Now I can stress about the effects stress is having on me. Good times. You do that a lot when you are wide awake at 2am or 3am or 4am. You fret and obsess over absurd things. You over analyze and re-think all the things that have you awake in the first place. Yeah, logic and insomnia don’t go hand in hand. 

It’s Friday night and I could have/should have taken something to help me sleep. But I’ve got to work tomorrow and the amount of work on my to-do list (which I’ve been obsessing over all night) is pretty impressive. So I need to go on relatively early. Which I couldn’t do if I had a sleep aide hangover. Or that’s how my thoughts ran. Not that the lack of sleep hangover will be any better. Oh goodie…let’s worry about that awhile. 

Ever notice that when people notice your stress the first thing they say is usually something like “you should do something about that…life is to short to _______ (fill in the blank). Uh. Duh. That’s what I want to say anyway. 

Life is too short to miss swim meets and basketball games; to miss long weekends—hell to miss weekends in general. No one would argue that. It’s also life and to have one and to take care of the ones you gave it to you have to do what has to be done. Even when you ask yourself what would happen if I didn’t this once? But  not song what has to be done isn’t really an option so it’s the one thing you let go of in the wee hours. 

I worked 55 hours this week when I left today. I could easily work 20 hours this weekend. I hope I won’t-but I could. It was 1:30 today before I got out of my chair…from 8 am that morning. No wonder I am growing increasingly fluffy. Only my fingers move during the day. So much so that now most of the letters are worn off my keyboard and the e started sticking today. 

I tell myself it’s temporary. But that’s what I said last time I did this. Work is like weight. Once you have/do extra it’s real hard to get rid of it. I tell myself that people are counting on me and they deserve all the effort I can provide. But I am not the only one people are counting on…

I am so grateful to have a job. Not everyone does. I am. I have a home, a car, healthcare; I can buy food, pay my light bill and clothe my little ones. Without a job I couldn’t do these things. I am grateful. And this is not to say I am not. 

I just have to get some pent up frustrations out so that I can get to sleep to do the job I am grateful to have. 

Of course now I’ll just feel guilty about whining. I can’t win for losing. 

It’s weeks like this that remind me how hard and awful it is to be a single parent. Being at work late means I am not with them and with them is the only place I want to be. There is no sub. I don’t have anyone to tag in. If I am not home they have no one else to come home to.  I have no one else to come home to. Life is meant to be lived in pairs. It’s weeks like this that remind me of that. And it’s weeks like these that not being part of a pair is hard. A shoulder to cry on, a shoulder to lean on, shoulders to help carry the load. I don’t have an extra set of shoulders around here. I miss that. 

Last time I did this it cost me my family. Deep down I know it’s not the hours I worked that caused “the fall”…or maybe I don’t know that. It varies. I do know, with certainty, that had I been home I would have known earlier someting was wrong. If I’d been paying more attention maybe it wouldn’t have gotten to bad. Maybe I could have done something before there was no option left. Maybe. I think about that sometimes late at night after I’ve missed dinner or bedtimes or school events. But, like most things I think about at 3am, it’s a waste of energy. 

Google again to the rescue. This is how I feel right now-brittle. I am hard but right now I feel like I could shatter easily. Sometimes I wonder, again at 3a, what will be the one thing-the last thing-that finally breaks me? 

I stay on the brink of tears. At 10a I can keep them at bay (sometimes) but I can’t at 2:46am. 

My friends gather for lunch. I don’t leave my desk for lunch anymore. So I am missing conversations, birthdays, celebrations and worst of all I am not there for them when they might need me. I need them desperately but to have friends you have to be a friend and I am not a very good one these days. So at 4:15 I worry that I am not there enough anymore for them to even know when I am gone. 

I am holding things together (barely) at work but everywhere else is falling apart. I am not gifted in things domestic on a good day. On these long days I am a downright disaster. Laundry, general cleaning…these things don’t care what sort of hours you are putting in…they still need to be done. But I am not doing them. I worry about not doing them but I don’t do them. Too bad I am not a productive insomniac. That would solve all kinds of issues. 

In the dark of night what are not shines the brightest. You don’t lie awake and congratulate yourself for being a hard worker. Oh no. You don’t lie awake, starring at the fan and make a mental list of all the things you are doing right. Nope. You lie awake and think of all the ways you are inadequate or failing. At night all you can think about are the things you aren’t. The phrase I am enough doesn’t exist at 2:18 am. 

Despite my best efforts and sincerest of vows I didn’t get to leave the office in time to make the girls basketball game. For the second time this week I ran in, paid my entrance fee by check and sat down just barely in time to see the 1/2 time dance. Yet as we were leaving the gym my daughter said, as she does everytime, “Thank you for coming, mama.” And I wanted to cry. So sweet and appreciative even though I was late. 

I am scared to work like I do but I am more afraid of not working like I do. 

I’ll never be the smartest. I am not the fastest or the most knowledgeable. I know this. I can’t control that so I try and be the hardest worker. That’s my strength. I’ll get it done. It might not be the most technologically advanced method, someone smarter might have known a different way of doing it–I admit to that—but I’ll get it done. Even if the only thing I bring to the table is determination.  

Lately I’ve asked myself if I could do/be anything what would I want to do/be. I don’t know. At 3:14 I worry about that–what kind of person doesn’t have a goal or a dream? A tired one, I guess. Dreaming and goals take effort. They take energy and I don’t have any extra of either right now. I’d like to have an answer to this one day. 

People around me have hobbies and interest. They DO things. I don’t. That makes me sad. Work and life should balance. Mine don’t. That is my fault-I know. But if I ever don’t work as much, once swim meets and softball games are over what will I do? What will I offer? Just another question to keep me up. 

It’s not just work keeping me up. It’s that everything seems to be in such flux. It’s like my foundation is built on quicksand. I’d like to have firm footing somewhere. But I can’t seem to get a foothold anywhere. I don’t have a personal life. I don’t know what my professional life will look like 2 days, 2 weeks or 2 months from now.  My role of mom seems to be shifting as the older 2 get older and the youngest moves out of her little girl stage and into her big girl stage. I am not a wife even though that’s really all I ever wanted to be. I am not a writer-I am just a person who writes. I don’t have a cause I am passionate about. Just one thing to grab onto would help, I think. 

I’ve written it all out tonight hoping it would help. I’ve raided the cabinet and splurged on a spoonful of cookie butter. I’ve prayed a little and I’ve cried a little. I’ve allowed myself a brief pity party. I’ve allowed myself to be mad a little. I’ve wondered if it matters a little. I’ve worried a lot. I’ve checked the clock again and again. I’ve gotten some water and made a trip to the bathroom. I’ve tried to read. I’ve fluffed my pillows and re-adjusted my sheets. I’ve tried my side, my back and my tummy. I’ve checked Facebook, deleted my old emails and looked at Pinterest. I’ve thought of all the things I am grateful for. I’ve reprimanded myself for whining. I’ve counted sheep and repositoned the dog. And yet, here I am, eyes wide open even when all they want to do is close. 


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