Friday, November 27, 2009

Getting my life back

Well, yes, I have been busy recently, mainly I've been doing a lot of family history stuff. All of those other crafting things I wanted to do? Swept by the wayside. However, that's only a little part of why I haven't posted much this month.

I've really been struggling to keep crazy Celia contained the last couple of months. My emotions have been all over the place. Some days and some moments I feel totally normal, fine, sane. Other moments and days I'm sitting on the couch in tears, feeling too tired and overwhelmed to deal with Walt screaming and Dean doing some normal 2 year old thing. I have felt profoundly lonely the last couple of months. I have been very aware of my physical distance from family and old friends, and I don't have the deep connections and friendships yet here that I really have been needing and longing for. It's so much harder to make those deep connections when you don't live with the people. Don't get me wrong. I have a lot to be thankful for. I have lots and lots of happy moments and days. But I've just had waaaayyyy more lonely/crazy days and moments than I care for.

Other things that factor in to my craziness: I have been pretty sleep deprived the last 4 months. And not just "nursing newborn" sleep deprived. It's that, plus we go to bed way too late, plus stupid insomnia once we get to bed. I often don't fall asleep until 2 am and then am up again around 7am when the boys wake up. I am pretty much running on fumes most days.

This morning crazy Celia was in full swing. Matt woke up to me sitting on the couch crying with Dean sitting on my lap (I was trying to get pants and shoes on him to go outside, but he was evading me) and Walt was lying on a blanket scream talking since he was tired of being ignored (and he skipped his nap, adding to my and his frustration). After a little crying and talking with Matt, he suggested I go take a run while he stay with the boys.

So I went. While I was gone, there were a number of things that came to my head about what I need to do to get my life back. First I tried to identify my problem: was it just lack of sleep? postpartum depression? pms? Then I decided it didn't really matter at this point. Before I get any sort of chemical or professional help, I realized there are common sense things that I have to do to take care of myself that might take care of my problems. I mentally made a list of things I need to change and can reasonably change. When I got home I wrote down a list of 10.

Common sense things I need to do to get out of this funk:
1. Exercise 5 days a week. At least 1/2 hour, preferably by myself, but with the boys if need be.
  • This means I'll need to get up around 6 am before the boys, work out after they go to bed, have Matt stay with them (on weekend/holidays), and/or get a double jogging stroller.
2. Eat 3 real meals a day.
  • Lunch has been a real struggle for me because I've been getting Dean's lunch, feeding Walt, putting Dean down for a nap, and then Walt needs a nap. By that time I'm pretty exhausted and I end up choosing nap over food. I'll generally get a snack or have a shake once I wake up since it's around 2 by then.
3. Drink enough water.
  • I used to be really good about this. I just get side tracked with the boys and forget.
4. Eat enough fruits and vegetables.
  • This corresponds with #2. I need to make a big salad with lunch every day and eat fruits instead of other sugars in the evening.
5. Read scriptures and/or the Ensign at least 1/2 hour every day.
  • Right now I read scriptures right before bed. I don't mind reading at night, but I need to start earlier since I end up only reading anywhere from 1 chapter to 15 min. max.
6. Make a detailed schedule for the week, post it on my wall, and stick to it.
  • Having a goal and direction will help me as much as I like freedom and flexibility. I know I don't use my time as well as I should.
7. Go to bed by 10 and absolutely no later than 10:30. Even if I am having a hard time shutting my mind off.

8. Cut out most refined sugars. Absolutely no candy (yes, even over Christmas). If there is a homemade holiday dessert, that's ok, but limit myself to small portions.

9. Take a break from FB for a little while.
  • I could explain this, but I'd rather not.
10. Go on an "out of the house" date with Matt AT LEAST once a month. Check into trading babysitting with another couple.
  • We have probably gone on less than 5 dates this whole year, including trips to the temple. That has really added to my loneliness. Walt's getting to the point where we'd be able to leave after about 7:30 or 8 and not worry about him waking up till after 11 or 12 or so. (He just woke up and is crying as I type this, though. =P)
So, that's what I need to do for starters. (That and get a blessing from Matt.) It needs to not be talk. I have to make real, long term changes. I'm sick of crazy Celia. She needs to go.


randa_joy said...

Ireally hope you get some sleep. Being sleep-deprived makes me so short-tempered with Addie.
Also dehydration can cause a bunch of other problems. It gives me head aches and messes up my milk supply so I keep one 24 oz bottle with my boppy so wherever I'm nursing I'm rehydrating and also in the kitchen. I totally need more real cardio too, and not just count chasing Addie as my exercise. I'm so much nicer and happier and productive when I have had some exercie (esp. if it's "alone time").
Good luck sweet Celia! I wish you were my neighbor!

Kristeee said...

I'm sorry you've been having a rough time. Feeling lonely is no fun, and neither is the feeling that you can barely keep your head above water. The two together wears me down rather quickly.

A couple of things that helped me kick a similar funk a couple of months ago (in addition to exercise and spiritual stuff) were acupuncture and taking a daily supplement of fish oil (I'm actually taking krill oil, which is more potent). The Omega 3s really help to boost your mood, and the acupuncture somehow makes me able to cope with life again.

Good luck. This is hard stuff to deal with, especially as a mom.

Amy said...

I'm not a fan of crazy Amy either! Just remember you're not alone...I feel similar at times, especially when a certain 2-year-old likes to throw tantrum after tantrum. There's only so much a person can take! :)

Good luck working on your goals, I'm sure writing them down with help a lot.

Brooke said...

Celia...I feel your pain. I've also been in a weird "lonely" phase lately. It's hard to be far from all family and not have any really CLOSE friends. I'm so grateful to have the Internet to feel connected. But, then there's the whole "don't want to be on the Internet all the time and neglect other responsibilities" feeling. I wish I had a good friend to go to the park with or just hang out and let the kids play or whatever. It's a hard spot. I enjoyed your list of goals. I can work on a lot of those things too! Good luck with everything.

marzy dotes said...

Celia, I wish I could sit down and cry with you, because I have those days too. I had a lot more of them after my second was born and I felt like I just couldn't handle it. I am having those days now after number three and I also feel pretty lonely. I have lots of hubby's fam here which is a huge help, but I miss close friends too - I miss you! Hang in there! I am going to take a page from your book and try to work on some goals for myself too! I love you!

Melissa said...

Hopefully knowing that lots of other moms experience the same emotions helps you know you are not alone! I understand exactly how you feel! I'm sure your plan will help. It always feels good to take action. Hang in there!

Lindsay said...

Oh, I am with you. It's hard. Some days I wonder where the heck I found the energy to keep going like I did. It's slowly been getting better -- like two steps forward, one step back (or sometimes three steps back...), but on the good days it's nice to be able to look back on the past few months and realize that things are getting better. Good luck with your goals -- they sound great.

AmyJane said...

I've been having a crazy-Amy period in my life, ever since we moved. I can identify very much. In fact, I made a list JUST like this one on the way home from my parents Thanksgiving trip yesterday. Funny how it's the basic crap that gets you down when you're the mom. Good luck--I'll be trying all of this myself as well!

Celia Marie (W.) B. said...

Thanks all. I had a couple good days in a row. Last night I had insomnia again and didn't get as much rest as I'd have liked. I've had a pretty grouchy day, bordering on crazy. So, I think it's definitely linked to sleep deprivation. Hopefully when I start sleep training Walt I'll have a lot more up days.

Amanda said...

If it makes you feel any better, having two kids was my hardest stage. I think that I took St. John's Wort and put both kids in the stroller first thing in the morning for an hour long walk. That seemed to help a lot. But insomnia is the thing that seems to mess everything up. I am struggling with it too right now, and it is no fun. It is so hard to get up and exercise at 6 if you can't fall asleep until 2 (or wake up for a few hours in the night). But I am going to commit to early morning exercise again to try to help me get more restful sleep. It seems to help more than anything. Just do your best. Good luck.