I’m not going to lie, in another post I did a take on Mary Lambert’s Secrets, and I didn’t lie about the Anxiety Disorder thing, so I almost always have a lot on my mind. Rest assured, when it comes to the important things in life, I will stay up at night ruminating about how to solve my problems. If not for my medication, I would never sleep. I can understand how my son, who shows signs of anxiety (a commonly co-morbid condition with autism), would always have problems sleeping. However, I’m finding that, more and more, the things I worry about not only keep me up at night, but they present themselves in my dreams. I think about these things so often that I even think about them in my sleep. Here are 10 Things That Keep Me Up at Night.
- Squeaker’s bad weeks. Thankfully, we’ve not had to deal with a bad week in a while. *knock on wood* When we do, I’m up searching exhaustively for answers.
- Big Guy’s emotional issues. I’m not sure if I’ve even talked about this publicly yet. I’ve recently sought help for him and rating scales have come back showing he’s in the borderline range for internalizing disorders and depression/anxiety. Sometimes he just can’t get past being upset, he’s so sensitive. He’s so much like me it scares me sometimes. We’re monitoring.
- Incomplete work. If I go to bed and it’s not all done, it just bugs me.
- Meetings. When I have a meeting the next day, especially if I’m not quite ready for it, it keeps my mind churning.
- Arguments with other people. You know how you always have that one thing you wish you had said? I never can get that one thing off my mind and boy does it aggravate me. Usually for days, until I can resolve the argument.
- Struggling students. There’s always at least one kid that needs rescuing that I just don’t know how to help. That one kid whose need is beyond my call of duty. It nags at me and gnaws at my conscience. If only I could take them all home with me.
- Not being clairvoyant really bothers me. I stay up wondering if I’m doing okay at work sometimes. I mean, I do my job. I do more than my job. But I don’t know what my boss is thinking, and it bothers me because things were a bit messed up for a little while last year and I hated that. Sometimes I walk on eggshells because I’m worried I’ll say the wrong thing. I have nightmares about negative interactions with coworkers, with my boss, etc. No one should be so consumed with work.
- That brings me to work. Work in general is all-consuming. It’s been the last 5 bullet points, honestly. (6, counting this one) I spend most of my life at work. I bring work home. I even dream about work. What’s wrong with me? I seriously need a vacation.
- Spousal issues. Oh yeah. You can’t have all that going on without worrying about how things are going with your marriage, right? He’s patient, thankfully. But when he’s had enough of all this work crap, I stay up worrying about that too.
- Finally, I worry about my health. My tooth enamel is probably worn down to nothing from me grinding my teeth both while I’m awake and while I’m asleep. My muscles are always tense. I don’t get enough sleep. When I log my calories on My Fitness Pal, it tells me I’m going into Starvation Mode, which probably explains why I’m not really losing much in the way of weight. In summation: I know I don’t take care of myself. But I have an intense job that currently doesn’t give me much in the way of flexibility, two really needy kids, and a husband that hardly sees me now. There’s no time for food, sleep, or exercise anymore. My doctor says I can’t take care of anyone else if I don’t take care of myself. When I try to take care of myself, the world goes into a revolt. *shrug* I’m still standing, so I trudge on.
So yes, this is the reality. I stress and I wear myself too thin and these things that keep me up at night exhaust me. That’s just who I am. One of these days, I’ll sleep like I’m supposed to. Most likely, that won’t be for another 16 years or so though. Until then, goodnight. See you next midnight!
Behind the Desk: How I Survived My First 10 Years in Education – Click here to view more details