Monday, December 10, 2007

Lost in the Mazes of my Mind

There have been lots of words flying around inside my head this past week; I thought of starting a post often. But the thoughts and feelings felt too ugly, confusing, overwhelming. Why the ups and downs? Can't I have a happy period that lasts more than a month? Why do bad days stick to me-why can't I toss them off and move on? Why am I so stupid, lame, lazy, a bad mother, bad wife, bad housekeeper? And on, and on.

BipolarLawyerCook's post on Real Mental this morning really rings a bell for me. She wonders why she waits until she's running on empty before taking time for the things that she knows help bring emotional well-being and mental balance. Just yesterday I realized that I am sort of like an addict, who thinks she can have one drink, one hit- I think I can stay up late just one night. Then it is a whole week of late nights. Then no exercise, no calm mornings, no weight watchers and by the end of the week, you have one girl in a serious mess which takes all weekend to recover from.

It didn't help that this weekend was super busy. Chanukah service on Friday night in which the kids were singing, lighting candles, etc. Home at 10:30 pm. At school on Saturday am at 7:45 for Kindergarten holiday concert. Breakfast with Santa right after. Third grade concert at 9:30 (all of this was at school). Come home, collapse, don't sleep or accomplish a thing. Maya to birthday party. Sam and friend at house playing legos. Chanukah party at temple at 5 pm. I was beside myself in the car, and knew enough to take a xanax on the way there. I forgot everything: menorah for group lighting, side dish, canned goods and toy for donation. I did bring gifts for the religious school teachers, but had to stop at CVS on the way for tape; I did bring the scissors and wrapping paper. When we got there I felt utterly anti-social. Erik was upset about the things I didn't take care of all afternoon (he was at the party with Maya). Eventually I started feeling better and had a nice time with my friends and my family. Sunday morning we were out of the house again for religious school. In the afternoon I started the gobs and gobs of laundry piled everywhere.

So today I decided to stay home, and not judge myself for needing a day to right myself. I exercised, I'm doing more laundry. I'm sort of stalled now, I've been writing this post for a few hours. In my vision of today I'm flitting about the house, cleaning, decluttering, and making our house into the home I yearn for. I don't think I've gone into loads of details here about this, but a tremendous trigger for me is the clutter in my home. My husband is a pack-rat. Sometimes I truly feel on the edge looking around at all of the piles. It is like a tidal wave, knocking me over, too big to fight against. We've recently had some really good conversations about this (does me crying hysterically and him listening count as a conversation?)--he apologized for the last ten years (I've been asking him to declutter for that long) and for not truly understanding how his reluctance to throw stuff away affects my mental health.

The going is slow, of course. And nothing much can get done when you're scheduled to the hilt. Even with available time, it is hard to make a big difference. I feel like I don't have the perseverance and discipline needed for this. I get down about it so easily- I mean, we've been 'trying' the same thing for years and years. Duh. Of course it isn't going to get better.

Sigh. I have no idea where I'm going with this. Like I said, the thoughts are all jumbled up in here. Bless you if you've read this far.

In an hour I'm due at Sam's classroom to read a story and teach them about Chanukah. I'm still wearing my exercise clothing. The dishwasher is full of clean dishes. The laundry baskets are full of clean, unfolded clothing. And I'm still wandering the mazes in my mind, and wishing I had Ariadne to toss me a ball of string.


Suna said...

Wish I could be your Ariadne (I DO have a lot of string), but I am afraid that if you substitute "contract ending early" for all your school rushing, and you'd have my situation. And the clutter trigger is mutual.

So, you are not alone. I don't know if that helps or not, but I do really, really understand how things snowball and how hard it is to be that vision of usefulness, flitting around and getting things done for more than a brief time.

I am really, REALLY tired of the rollercoaster--I don't want "happy" or "good" right now--just calm.

adena said...

I definitely have lots of similar feelings...when I have no time to myself, I start to feel crazy! I also am a clean house freak, and I cannot do a thing until the floors are washed, rugs vacuumed, dishes clean, etc. Of course, no one cares about the cleanliness of the house but me. And we are always trying to get rid of things, de-clutter... no sooner do we get rid of something when my husband brings something home from the DUMP no less !!!!! So don't feel crazy, you are so normal. We are all there with you.

rhonda said...

hug to you Hon! I'm right there with ya. wishing those around me could understand how the mess sends me spinning and then they don't like the mom/woman they live with. hmmm, maybe if you all would listen and respond, it would help.

As for the same 10 yrs of issues, sometimes it changes a bit, not that it goes away but it changes and things become easier. just the experience I've had. said...

I have the clutter trigger, too. It's hard when it's a partner's clutter, too... part of the clean-up process isn't mine to do.

I'm glad you took time for yourself. I'm impressed that a day or so of being good to yourself can right a week of burning the candle at both ends. It usually takes me a week to get centered again.

BipolarLawyerCook said...

Good for you for letting him have it, and good for him for actually listening. I hope the message sticks. You sound well and truly overscheduled-- I would be beside myself, too.

I think writing counts as doing something for yourself, so that offsets the tasks left to be done.
: )

Hope decluttering and calmness prevail soon. *Hugs*

Miss Sassy said...

I'm so behind on my blogs. I do hope you are feeling better now. I read your words and can totally relate.

I felt so bad about myself this morning that I canceled my annual exam with my OB/Gyn because I didn't want to be weighed or talk about baby stuff. I can't get in for 4 months now. What a dumb thing to do.

I'm the packrat at our home with a million hobbies. Our bedroom also has our office, craft storage, and my shipping center and business items. It is not a big room but we only have two bedrooms in our house. Today, as a Christmas gift for my husband, I cleaned out the room. It made him so happy and me, too.

I'm sorry that you are having those feelings. It is reassuring to me that someone else feels them and when I read about what you said, I think "don't be so hard on yourself!" So take that to heart.