Category Archives: Misc

A little lost

A little lost

“Andrew…?” I said into the dark last night, “I just feel so…lost…”

Silence.  He’d been sort of asleep before this.  He went to bed at a most reasonable 9:45pm, whereas I, craving an hour or two of kid-free quiet and normalcy in a stressful day, stayed up and watched iZombie.  And then Bob’s Burgers.  And then realized it was 11pm and if I started Call The Midwife I wouldn’t be in bed until midnight after taking the dog out, and so most virtuously and heroically turned off the television.

I figured he was still out, and that was okay, I mostly wanted to say it out loud, and then feel the warmth of his body against my back and take deep breaths and maybe be able to go to sleep.

“I’m sorry,” he finally said, “do you want to talk about it?”

Did I?  I mean, maybe, but I also knew that waking Andrew up and then asking to talk about feelings is just not a kind thing to do.  Save that for the big stuff.  The I-have-to-talk-now-or-I-can’t-sleep stuff.

“No,” I said, “not really.  Just…you know, trying to make sense of things.”

“Um…okay.” he said.  And putting an arm around me, he drifted back to sleep.

A few weeks back I let myself degrade to a state of ennui such that things truly ground to a halt in the house.  No clean clothes, or dishes, or food beyond peanut butter sandwiches.  I waited for momentum, for motivation, for something to propel me forward, and nothing came.

Except depression and self-loathing on the state of the house, which caused me to lash out at my husband and kids, and probably the dog too.  That came out just fine.

So last week I decided to make a plan and do it, no matter what.  Clear, clean, calendar schedule of what must be done.  Step by step by step.  And I did it too – I cleaned and cooked and put laundry on the clothes line and had special ed meetings and rehearsals and left for work on time and set out my clothes the night before and sang the Phos Hilaron every night and all those good things.  And the house did get a bit better.  The kids and dog were happier and calmer.  Andrew, having a longer memory than kids and dog, took a bit longer but slowly thawed.  We talked and laughed and made panna cotta and cocktails.

And I thought, okay.  If I build it, it will come.  Here’s the plan, and I’m doing the plan, and now will come satisfaction in the work, momentum to the next thing, motivation for creativity.

And it just did not.  Has not.

I can logically look at my situation and realize doing is better than not-doing.  My self-motivation nonwithstanding, cleaner house with happier family is better than dirty house with stressed out family.

But I’m just lost within it.  How did I get here.  This is not my beautiful house.  Same as it ever was.

I’m going to Ohio in a few weeks to see my brother and sister-in-law, and to bring them our crib, the crib Isaac and Kai used, for their new baby coming in July.  I’ll see them, and my parents, and will be away from my dirty house and needy kids, and I’m so looking forward to the 8 hour drive by myself in silence.  I so am.

I realize I’ve been thinking of that trip, also, as a chance for a clean break.  Before and after.  Before I was lost, after I will find myself renewed and ready to live my life again.  And I know how dangerous such thinking can be, that if I look to the external for that kind of renewal, then my internal motivation isn’t being used.  I know.  I can’t help it, here, I’m just grasping for something right now.

I just feel so…lost.

So tired, tired of waiting, tired of…zzz

So tired, tired of waiting, tired of…zzz

Great googly moggly, I’m exhausted.  Here’s the conundrum: I have to get up as early as 5am and no later than 7am every day of the week.  It’s just the stage of life I’m in: between getting kids to school and me to various works and church commitments, that’s the wake up window.

And then kids are going to sleep later than they used to – bedtime is now 8:30pm, with them truly down and settled around 8:45pm.

I’m a gal who needs 7-8 hours a night to feel like I can function.  Sleep.  It’s the best.

Counting back, that means I need to be asleep from 9pm to 11pm on various nights.  Because I’m an insomniac, having different bedtimes on different nights is hard for me – makes me less likely to get sleep.  Responsible Erika says we should always be asleep by 9pm, then…which means starting my bedtime ritual around 8:30pm…which is the same time as my 6 year old son.

Indignant Erika doesn’t like that one bit.  So, I stay up.  I have one quiet hour and a half with Andrew, then we go to bed.  I’m asleep around 11:30pm.

Those of you who are counting on your fingers now realize this means I am never getting my 7-8 hours, and on some nights I am only getting 5.5.

I’m.  SO.  TIRED.

Yes, I can shift that back to starting for bed at 10/10:30…but it’s still not quite enough.

I’ve been kind of ignoring the issue, hoping it was just this pocket of time and when we move to the next pocket of time, the issue would resolve itself…but it doesn’t seem to be the case.  Also, looking ahead, Isaac’s buses are only going to come earlier (summer school has an earlier start than regular school) and earlier (high school starts 90 minutes before middle school).  If I’m waiting for this pocket of time to change, well, it’s a really big-ass pocket of sleep deprivation.

UGH.  Parenting oneself STINKS.

I’m considering just going to bed at the same time as the kids until I feel caught up, and then assessing.  I make better decisions when I’m not a zombie.  Indignant Erika isn’t thrilled with the idea, but Sleepy Erika is Cranky.