How I Get My Extroverted Mind to Rest

When an extroverted entrepreneur and busy mom of three tries to embrace the sleep revolution, but struggles to achieve her calm

It’s 11 pm on any given night in our house. My alarm will go off at 7 am, so I believe there’s more than enough time for me to get an adequate night’s sleep.

I put on my comfy pajamas, kiss my kids goodnight and tell my dog I’ll see her in the morning. The exact moment I lay my head on my pillow, there’s a bit of a problem and the battle begins. My mind starts racing and all of a sudden I’m instantly thinking of things to put on my to-do list for the next day.

I kind of thought I handled all of this before I got ready for bed (that was kind of the point of me going to bed and thinking that I was done for the day), but apparently I wasn’t.  Continue reading

Dear Moms, Surrender the Cape

 

Learn how moms to achieve a life balance

Dear Moms,

First, I want to warn you about this post. For those who know me in real life, it will come as a shocker.  Even if you just know me from this blog, it will come as a shocker. Because I am going to tell you something that a lot of people don’t admit. Today, I am here to tell you to take off the cape. And know that it’s okay.

The cape I’m referring to is the SuperWoman cape. It needs to come off now. Really, it does. And I’m sharing this because I’ve recently discovered that if I don’t take it off, there is a Higher Power in the universe that will snatch if off of me. And sometimes snatching can be a bit painful.

In July, I went to the doctor and he strongly encouraged me to make some lifestyle changes. I know I’m sugar-coating it, but if you want the sordid details, read this. Kind of felt like he snatched my cape. He did tell me to decrease the amount of stress in my life and let go of the things I needed to let go.

And I did that. Kind of.

You see, I did take a short leave from work. But as I was off work, I thought about all of the things I needed to do to at home. Like I made a super list. And I immediately began to accomplish things on that list. And I was proud of myself. Really proud.

Because I truly believed — deep, down in my heart — that letting things go at work meant keeping things going (and even getting ahead of the game) at home. But somehow I don’t think that’s what was supposed to happen.

Have you heard the saying “a hard head makes for a soft behind?” My head and my behind have first hand experience with it. A couple of weeks ago as I was accomplishing items on my super to-do list, I took a trip to the grocery store.

In my haste to enter the store and accomplish all the things I needed to get done that day, I tripped. And fell. Not a graceful fall, but a crazy-I-was-tangled-up in the shopping-cart-fall. That ended with a knot on my head, a sore behind, a swollen ankle, and a stiff knee.

Yep. All of this after the doctor told me to take it easy.

Once the shopping cart and I ended our brief affair and I made it home, I thought of one thing. “I am not SuperWoman. I need to sit down and stay sitting.” So I surrendered my cape.

And I’ve never felt better. Surrendering the cape makes me think about something realistically before I say yes. Surrendering the cape allows me to get a full night’s rest. And surrendering the cape allows to me to be okay with not doing everything. And sometimes it’s okay to no do anything.

Especially if hard heads and soft behinds are involved.

If you have more thoughts about this, feel free to comment below. Have you missed some of our posts? Here are three recent ones:

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MOMMY

When the Doctor Says Sit Down…

one mom's mandated medical leave was for the bestBecause of my previous thyroid issues, every 6-8 weeks I have to do routine blood work. I’m used to both ends of the spectrum. Sometimes my doctor will send me a quick email that says, “The numbers look great, see you in three months!” (In the two years since my thyroidectomy, i’ve only had that happen once. Most of the time, the email reads, “Your numbers were a little low (or high) so we’ve changed your prescription.”

About three weeks ago, I needed to get a refill but the doctor recommended that I come in for an appointment first. This past spring, I had a super crazy sinus infection that somehow affected my eyesight for about a week. I was seeing double, y’all.So he wanted to follow up with me on my sinus issues and talk about my low vitamin d levels, which have been a problem for the past 6 months or so also.

So in a very happy-go-lucky routine trip to the doctor,  I was ready to skip away with my new prescription, a discussion about sinus infections and seasonal allergies, and a quick update on the kids and how they’ve grown. He’s our family doctor, and has been so for 10 years, so a question about the kids is normal.

But that’s not quite how it went.

When the nurse took my blood pressure, she said, “Hmmm….I think I need to take it again.” I took a deep breath but was still not too concerned. I always tend to be on the upper limit of the normal range.

She took it again and said, “Hmmm….a little bit better. Let’s see what he says.”

Uh oh. This didn’t sound good. Especially since her next sentence was, “Oh, he’s got a lot to talk to you about.”

“A lot? How are my thyroid levels?” After all, that was the main reason I was there.

“He’s probably going to change your medicine, but your blood tests show you have some other things going on too.”

“Other things?”

“Yes, many other things,”

And from there, my happy little appointment with my family doctor who I love went downhill.

So, without me turning this into a crazy medical post about all the things wrong with my body, I’ll share the highlights of that visit.

I left with seven new prescriptions, a strict vitamin regimen, and very clear instructions regarding my eating habits. I am also taking some time of work indefinitely and no longer drinking caffeine.

Dumbfounded did not even begin to explain how I felt. Especially since the last two things he said to me as the appointment ended were, “You’ve got to eliminate some stress from your life and you’ve got to do it now.”

“Ummm, hello family doctor who I used to love so much…I am a divorced mom of three. How am I supposed to eliminate stress?”

“Well lovely patient who I still love so much…you can’t eliminate the kids, but you can eliminate some other things. And maybe this time off work will help you figure out what needs to go and what needs to stay. And by the way, you’ve been a mom for 14 years and divorced for 7 years, your numbers have not been like this before.”

So, like any good (and scared) patient would do, I got the prescriptions filled and start googling blood levels and medicines and interactions. Y’all, I discovered something.

Some of this is a result of my thyroid disease. But the dreadful truth is that most of this could have been prevented. The stress plays a part, nutrition plays a part, sunlight plays a part. And the fact that it all snuck up on me in two months is even scarier.

And I’m now doing what I should have been doing all along — sitting down — at the house. For those of you who know me well or if you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know that August is probably one of the busiest months of the year at my full-time job. And I feel bad, because I have co-workers who I love and miss.


But the reality is, my body needed this. I’m also taking this time to rest (the meds make me sleepy), create fun end-of-summer memories with my kids, catching up with old friends over more than text messages, and reading. Which I’ve found in the past three weeks, is what really matters when it’s all said and done.

Thank you family doctor who I still love so much. You helped me see what really matters. Even if it is disguised in a low-carb lifestyle with no caffeine.

Has the doctor ever told you to sit down? Did you?