To be the Queen of Chaos, you have to be a little warped.

Posts tagged ‘stress’

It’s Like Starting Over

Yeah, I kind of crashed and burned for a while on this blogging thing.  I haven’t really known what to say or how to say it without coming off as whiny.

I’m doing my best to juggle everything that is on my agenda these days.  I don’t like to do things half-assed, nor do I like to feel that there are limits to my capabilities, so I can’t say I’m too happy with my efforts.

I’m tired all the time, mostly because I don’t sleep well.  I’m in the worst shape of my life.  I look like I just rolled out of bed most days because I either don’t have time or can’t be bothered to actually get ready fully in attractive, flattering clothing with hair and makeup done.  I’ve been taking more short cuts than I prefer to on things like cooking and cleaning.  Basically, I’ve been trying to use all the energy and enthusiasm I have to meet the kids’ most pressing needs – therapies, homework, health and personal stuff, activities, etc.

Also, my anxiety symptoms have kicked up a bit.  I’m well aware that I may have to do some level of preventative maintenance for the rest of my life where that’s concerned, but it’s been hard for me to refrain from thinking, “Now?  Really?!  Because I don’t have enough to deal with?!”  That’s the devilish truth about anxiety – it loves to creep in and stir up trouble when the boat is already rocking.  Asshole.

So basically, I’ve been kind of vacillating between stressed, anxious, and depressed, all while trying to hide it from my kids and cope in appropriate ways.  Listening to my ipod and knitting a lot again – let me know if you need a hat or some shit.

The biggest struggle I’m dealing with currently, though, is probably the Guilt Monster.  I feel so obligated to make the right choices and do all the thinking, researching, and planning for Jasmine.  There’s just no shutting up that little voice that says, “This is all your fault, so it is your responsibility to make it right.”  That same little fucker also likes to say, “One wrong decision made by their mother – who is always supposed to get it right – could ruin one of these girls forever.  Their future happiness depends on you giving them a perfect childhood.”

Basically, life’s complicated these days.  I wish I could say I have my normal level of enthusiasm for upcoming pleasures, like our vacation or the holidays, but I don’t.  Most of that stuff feels like one big to-do list that’s following me around, poking me in the back of the head, taunting me.

So there it is.  It’s whiny, it’s grouchy, it’s a downer – but at least it’s a frikkin’ post, right?

K.I.S.S.

Last summer sucked.  I was embroiled in anxiety, overwhelmed by life in general, and so unable to enjoy most of the things we all think of a summer pleasures.  I have the good fortune now to be much happier and more comfortable in my skin, and hence have promised myself that this will be the Summer of Reclamation.

I have always been a summer person – born in July and raised on summers of drippy popsicles, backyard barbeques, and swimming until my eyes were red and my lips were blue.  It genuinely irks me to think of last year as a summer wasted, so here are my goals to ensure that this summer makes up for the last.

1. When in doubt, do it.  When you’re trying to avoid stress, it is easy to think that staying in a predictable comfort zone all the time is the safest option.  It is also the most boring and least enlightening choice, and it’s not even foolproof.  Just as much stress can be had at home with three kids as anywhere else.  So when I have the chance to go somewhere or participate in something this summer, I plan to do it if at all possible.

2. The caveat to number one – don’t do anything you don’t WANT to do.  This is different than avoiding possibilities based on fear; this is taking ownership of the fact that my life is mine to do with as I wish.  Which means I have no obligation to participate in something that I know full well will make me miserable or be an utter waste of my time and energy.

3. Get one productive thing done each day, then go play.  As long as my house is sanitary and our basic household management needs are met, I’m not sweating the Martha Stewart routine this summer.  If, at the end of the day, I can say I did a load of laundry or picked up a birthday gift, that’s good enough for me.

4. Detoxify my relationships.  This one is already in motion, with at least two “friends” who are no longer good for me psychologically put out to pasture.  That’s hard for me to do, since I don’t like confrontation and I am hopelessly sappy, but it has become a matter of good self-care.  Hurtful words, thoughtless actions, and incompatible priorities create stress for me, and stress can lead me down a path I don’t ever want to travel again if I can help it.  If minor issues come up in otherwise healthy relationships, I am determined to advocate calmly for myself.

5. Unapologetically be myself and like myself.  That means going about my day with a confident attitude, not caring about the opinions of others.  I’m going to do what I feel like doing, without worrying about looking foolish or ugly or censoring my actions for the benefit of others.  In other words, I don’t care if you don’t want to see my fat body in a bathing suit – it’s a free country and I’m going swimming, asshat!  I’m going to try and avoid self-deprecation as well, and talk and think about myself the way I’d talk about my best friend or my daughter.

The title of this post is in reference to the popular corporate saying, “Keep It Simple, Stupid.”  This probably doesn’t sound like a very simple plan of action, but it really boils down to the sole concept of increasing fun and decreasing stress.

In the spirit of my fifth goal, however, I think I shall change the acronym’s meaning to, “Keep It Simple, Superstar!”  If anyone doesn’t like it – well, you know what they can K.I.S.S.  *wink*