Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Got Stress?

We all endure stress.  It's just part of life, from birth on.  Even just getting out of bed is stressful on some days.  Most of the time, I do okay with stress.  I consider myself to be pretty adaptable, and most of the time I roll with it.  But there's stress, and then there's STRESS.  And by stress, I mean my stress, Larry's stress, and Zane's stress.  It seems that my role of Mom means that I am stressed by everything that stresses my loved ones out, as well. I feel that I can never be "off", because someone is always depending on me to remember something, be somewhere, etc.  I can generally refrain from trying to fix everything for everyone, but that doesn't mean that I don't suffer their stress emotionally.  If they are upset, I am upset. So what we have here is a stinkin' pile of stress.  I'm not as spry with dodging obstacles like stressors as I used to be, so I'm starting to feel it.   Lately I'm having random panic attacks, with the shakiness, the sudden sense of impending doom, the butterflies in the stomach.  This is probably a sign that I've reached the end of whatever rope is out there, but I haven't been able to take a breather just yet.  These days, although I am probably catastrophizing(I'm pretty sure that is a word, and if it's not, let's just pretend, shall we?), I feel like I'm just one step away from a complete meltdown. 

This is exactly what I look like!  Except for my hair is not as neat. 

And by meltdown, I mean the kind that gets you a trip somewhere to "rest" for a couple of months.  It's probably not a good sign that the idea of a "rest" anywhere doesn't really seem all that bad.  Somewhere where it's quiet, where I don't get interrupted every 30 seconds, where I can concentrate on a task, where I don't get guilted for not paying attention to every single thing in the world.  A place where I am not expected to drop everything that I am doing to immediately gratify the needs of people who never bother to return the favor. A place where someone else does all the cleaning and cooking.  Where someone pampers me with massages and pedicures, and I can sleep late if I want.  Where the mountain comes to me, instead of my having to go to the mountain.   Where I can walk as far as I want to, without shouldering everyone else's burdens for a time.  Yes, I know--this place doesn't exist.  I need the fantasy for a little while.

This is what I want to look like when there's stress.
I would like to be able to close my eyes, take a few deep breaths, and achieve a placid, balanced state. Like those people who practice meditation.  I am sure that it would be great for my health.  My blood pressure would be lower.  The butterflies in my stomach would just up and die.  I wouldn't be clenching my teeth all the time.  My eye would probably stop twitching.  The muscles in my neck would relax, and I might actually sleep well.  Unfortunately, I was never very good at the whole "let your thoughts go" thing. 

I do love my husband and son.  I love being a mom.  This isn't really about them--it's about me and recharging my currently depleted reserve of resiliency.  I don't want to stay at home because right now it's a big sorry mess. The piles just get away from me, and then I just stop trying.  If I thought it would help, I'd go do what my friend Jillsmo does, and go stay in a hotel for a couple of days, just to get back on a more even keel.  Or perhaps it would be better for my well-being to go hang out in a monastery or a convent, where everyone has taken a vow of silence. 

What do you guys do when you've reached the end?


  1. I wouldn't endorse this but throw your back out. I did on Monday and now I'm on muscle relaxants and I think my fingers are little Polish sausages right now. Aside from my back killing it's been a good few days to myself lying down and watching TV....

  2. I talk to friends. I am pretty sure that is what has kept me able to live in my own home instead of at a "retreat". You did just sum me up in a nutshell as well up there. Had the near full blown anxiety attack last night. Oh, I never thought I would long for the good old days when my nerves just sent me flying to the bathroom...why so MANY symptoms now!? I organize things a lot of times too, makes me feel a bit back in control. Argh! I wish you lived around the corner because cookies would help us too...I know they would 9OK, a little dark chocolate actually does help)

  3. i recite hymns and Bible verses in my head--or watch a mindless tv show--or the news--drink tea or coffee--play a game on the computer or facebook---hope ya start feeling less stressed!!

  4. I go for a walk... or a run depending on how stressed I am. If I can't get out, I read. In the bathroom... with the door locked. :)


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