Sunday, January 15, 2012

Still Adjusting

Lately I've been feeling like I'm running to catch up. The thing is, I don't know what I'm trying to catch up to. I just feel like I'm not doing enough around here. I feel like my house is always a cluttery mess and I can't seem to get the motivation to do anything about making it look better. I have been trying to do this chore chart system that I set up last year but I can't seem to keep up with it. I can't seem to get myself out of bed in the morning to get going on my day like I want to. I used to get up around 6/6:30, shower and get ready, make breakfast, etc. Now, I drag myself out of bed at 6:30 and lounge around for an hour watching the kids get ready and they make themselves breakfast. It's like I've turned into this whole lazy version of myself. I've even been blaming my more "relaxed" husband on my laziness, thinking that his lack of action has rubbed off on me and since he doesn't care whether or not a task gets done, I have no motivation to do anything at all. And then I spend the rest of the time in my day stressing out about how I can't seem to get anything done.

However, after a lengthy chat with my mother last week, one of many lengthy chats actually (I've really become the needy emotional daughter lately too), I realized that I'm still adjusting to having five kids. I really had a good rhythm right after moving here in October 2009 until I got pregnant in August of 2010 and had bad morning sickness. I felt like I really had things under control. I was even doing things for myself--going out with friends to Girls' Night Out, taking violin lessons, involved in ward choir, hitting up every family social event and activity our community had to offer, etc., etc. The boys played baseball, we tried out tumbling and basketball and flag football.

But my anxiety and stress all stem from the fact that I feel like I have nothing under control anymore. My baby doesn't sleep all night STILL. Yep, he's 10 months old and still gets up 1-2 times per night, at least once to eat. His naps are still completely unpredictable. My kids are driving me stir-crazy because I don't have the energy to take them all over to be involved in different things. Right now, my daughter is in dance. The two older boys did flag football in the fall and they are doing an indoor soccer camp right now. The dance and soccer camp are both one night a week, one right after the other, so it's fairly easy that I only have one day of chaos. And even THAT is hard with a 10-month-old and other kids.

Having a Girls' Night Out just isn't happening with me lately. I'm too pooped by 8:00 pm to even imagine heading out that late. I can hardly keep my eyes open past 7:00. Even thinking about picking up my violin to practice wears me out. So does the thought of playing the piano. And forget about giving my boys lessons anymore. Right now, I'm having them review, review, review. They are to pick two songs every day that they've learned before and practice them. I just want them to keep it up but I don't have it in me to teach them.

When I did preschool with my 2nd, we did science and social studies and art and music in addition to math and reading. My 3rd child is just lucky we do anything at all. He doesn't really need it. He can already read the scriptures by himself and do adding, subtracting and basic multiplication. but I feel bad that we aren't exploring the world like I did with my older two.

So in talking with my mom, she made me realize that I'm still adjusting to that fifth child in the family. When he starts sleeping better and simply just gets older, I'll get my rhythm back. Until then, I guess I just have to be patient with myself. Which is not easy to do.


Spring said...

It is amazing what not sleeping through the night can do to your motivation and energy levels. There are days when Samuel sleeps through the night and I'm amazed at what I can do. But those are rare, and most days I'm amazed at what I don't do. Isaac was the same way - he didn't sleep through consistently 'till he was a year old, and even then it was a delicate dance of being precise with his before-bed feeding that did it. If someone besides me put him to bed, they never understood the necessity of his exact routine and why I shoved so much food down his throat before bed. So he'd wake up. Being tired all the time is just hard, and it sucks. It will get better, I keep tell myself that anyway! In the meantime, I'm working on that patience thing, too!

Stacy said...

My baby is 14 months old, and has not slept through the night once. Yup, not once. He's up multiple times a night, still, and short of crying it out (which we won't do) there's nothing that we have found to make it better. So we're determined that we just need to make it through. It's hard, no doubt. There are mornings that I literally cry before I get up in the morning because I've gotten so little sleep and I'm supposed to teach violin lessons and school my children, etc.

Here's what I think, take it for what it's worth. I think you have some red flags for post partum depression. Lack of interest in daily things, no motivation, a pervasive feeling of sadness, all those things point to it. You may want to get that checked out. I've been on antidepressants twice for PPD, once after my second daughter was born, and once after my second miscarriage. Antidepressants aren't always the answer, but it gave me enough of a help to start functioning in my daily life again.

I could write a book about this, but let me give you one or two more ideas. Having structure to my day really helps. For me, knowing that I have to teach lessons gets me out of bed, dressed and ready for the day. Planning things that I need to be to gives me something to look forward to and a reason to get my day moving along.

That all being said, Heavenly Father will help you. Not just when things are at their worst, but every day. I'm still learning how to pray and ask for help in my every day parenting challenges, but I know that He loves my kids more than I do, and He will strengthen me and help me become the mother that my children need me to be, even if I've only had 2 hours of sleep. It's amazing the miracles that Heavenly Father can work.

Becky said...

Rob sat me down when I had a similar gripe with myself and told me he didn't expect anything out of me until the child slept through the night on a regular basis for a month. Brendon asks me why I'm tired. I tell him because I have not slept through the entire night since August 2010. Puts things in perspective huh? Your mom is right. You are only in a race with yourself, so get out of the race.


Related Posts with Thumbnails