5am Alarms

Today was one of those mornings.  I could feel it coming on as soon as I hit the snooze.  That deep feeling of dread that encompasses my waking moments about once a week or so.  I’m so exhausted the night before that I don’t do everything that I know I should before bedtime.  So, upon waking the next morning it hits me like a ton of bricks, all that I need to do just to be able to start my day.  Wash the dishes, do at least one load of laundry before Christian goes to school, mop the kitchen floor…and, there are people coming over today.  At least I don’t have to fix dinner tonight.  Its like a frost that starts when the alarm goes off and as I move about the house that morning it seems to spread to everything that I touch until pretty soon, I am so overwhelmed I can’t seem to remember why I even bothered to get out of bed, and I start to feel paralysed.  I can’t function except to do the bare necessities and maybe cry a little.  I know what it is.  I’ve heard that admitting the problem is half the battle.  Celebrities have recently made it all but popular to suffer from postpardum depression.  I’m not to the “postpardum” part yet, but depression is something that has reared its ugly head periodically in my life.  I guess now, for me, it would be labled as prenatal.  Its a hormonal imbalance, mostly, and I am aware of that, although it doesn’t make it easy.

Most of my life, I have gone through periods where I guess I would be labled as depressed.  I couldn’t even tell you why.  Different things happened in my life, things that every teenager or young adult goes through.  But, for some reason, I just had a hard time dealing with these things.  When I was going through my divorce, I had a counselor for a short time that wanted to put me on medication.  It was easy to refuse then, because I knew the source of my pain was the divorce and that was not just in my head.  I know now that part of my problem is the changes that my body is going through, and I sometimes think it would be better for my family if I was medicated, just until the baby is born and life goes back to normal.  But, I’m not, so I just do my best to spend those extra minutes in God’s Word, in prayer, and blogging about my life for all 5 of my readers.  🙂  That probably sounds really cliche to some of my Christian readers, but I have to tell ya that it helps tremendously!

Anyone who knows me, knows that my house is generally a disaster.  I don’t mind having company when I know the person, because most likely they have seen it before.  (Or, if its my grandma, she says, “I raised kids too, once!”)  But, that seems to be one of the biggest triggers of this overwhelming feeling of self-loathing. Even though I know the feelings are made so intense by this life growing inside of me, I also have figured out what I can do to help calm myself. 

1.  Clean the kitchen…everyday.  (Really I would feel better if it was deep cleaned everyday and sparkling fresh, but I will settle for the floor swept, the table and counters cleared and the dishes washed before I go to bed.)

2.  The bathroom clean.  Normally this seems like a big job, but I ordered some cleaning wipes from a company called Melaleuca, and while the kids are in the tub, I toss all of their dirty clothes into the hall to be picked up later and then I wipe down the sink and the toilet.  That does wonders for my sanity.  And, I have been trying to make the kids pick up after themselves in there. 

3.  If I have clean clothes to wear in the morning and clean towels and washclothes to use for my shower when I wake up.  As, I read over this one, it sounds silly, but laundry is one of my biggest vices.  Even on the days when I have time to do it, its an impossible task because I have a terrible time folding clothes and keeping them folded with Allyn around, so I generally give up.  So, if I can do a load of clothes early enough in the evening that it is drying when I go to bed and ready for me in the morning, that helps. 

4.  If I can spend 1-2 hours in the morning, before the kids get up, showering, drinking coffee, reading my Bible, praying and blogging, this one probably helps the most.  The problem is that if #3 isn’t done, then #4 probably is gonna get overlooked because then I have to do #3 before I can start #4 so that I have clean towels and clothes for after my shower.  This means getting up at about 5am, but believe me, as much as I dread a 5am alarm, I’m a much nicer person if I don’t hit the snooze and just get up, and yes, even on the weekends.

5.  The last thing is to make sure the checkbook is balanced and the bills are getting paid.  This is already my responsibility so I’m not ever nagging Derick about it.  But I feel totally irresponsible if I neglect it for any length of time. 

I know this seems like a typical to do list for most stay-at-home moms, but I can’t explain how worthless I feel if I don’t get those things done.  And, I can almost forget about doing much beyond that.  I simply don’t have the energy or the desire.  Today was not one of those mornings.  The laundry got done this morning, although, I did find a few clean things to use after my shower.  The dishes are mostly loaded in the dishwasher, but not all, therefore it didn’t get run last night.  The bathroom was pretty good, but I hit the snooze until 5:30 and Allyn has been awake, talking to himself for the last 40 minutes.  *Sigh*  The only thing I can do is remember that the extremity of my emotions right now is temporary.  A couple of months after the baby is born things will calm down and I can go back to being (semi)normal, (whatever that is…)

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1 Comment

Filed under Pregnancy and kids

One response to “5am Alarms

  1. Jodi Clayton

    Leslie–

    Derick’s cousin speaking:

    I know EXACTLY how you feel–the depression that ebbs and wanes, the struggle to keep up with the house and kids, the husband who has to travel, knowing God has to come first–but not always doing that…I feel it all.

    I don’t know you at all, but from facebook and your blog, I think you are an AMAZING person. I love your faith–thank you for your example!

    Jodi Clayton

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