Exhaustion

Exhaustion can come in many forms and for many reasons. It can come at the end of a particularly hard work week. It can come after running a marathon. It can be a symptom of depression. It can be from lack of sleep.

But mostly, when we’re exhausted from something, then we are tired of something happening.

It doesn’t really matter what you’re exhausted by. It is only important that you remember to refill your cup.

So take a bath. Sleep. Go for a walk. Enjoy the weekend. Do something that makes you happy.

Just remember to do something for yourself and break the cycle.

Don’t worry. Take all the time you need. I’ll still be here.

Love,

Bailey

On the Wrong Side

I woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning.

No matter what I did, I was annoyed and angry and tired, and I got up out of a warm bed with a chip on my shoulder.

But there’s one key thing you should remember: it doesn’t matter how you start your day, it only matters how you finish it.

So, anyway you take it, you don’t have to stay with a bad day. You can choose to change your day and your attitude. Just like that.

So, if you wake up on the wrong side of the bed, or you’re on the wrong side of the fence, or if you just feel wrong, then don’t worry.

It won’t last.

Love,

Bailey

Dreaming

When I was a young girl watching Oprah with my mom after school each day, (I know, cool mom, right?) I took in a lot of wisdom that probably should have been reserved for me much later in life. 

One of my favorite things Oprah said (and I’m about 90% sure I’ve talked about this before, but bear with me) is that life touches you on the arm, then it pokes you, then it slaps you, and finally, it throws up a brick wall (or something to that effect.)

In essence, life is trying to help you figure it out. It sends you messages, little by little, until you get it. But humans, in our infinite intelligence, think that we can do it on our own. Which is when life throws up a brick wall, as if to say, do you get it now??? 

For me, when I start dreaming about something, I know I’ve hit a brick wall. 

That is, I don’t dream about things, or have truly vivid dreams, until I’ve reached my breaking point. (No caffeine, no late night snacks, just pure unadulterated stress makes my brain think up crazy situations just to get me to see reason.)

And last night? I dreamt that every time I left the room, one of the people I was living with was strangled. And then, the strangler would come to me and choke me. And somehow, I would get free, and he would choke someone else and then come looking for me. 

Needless to say, I woke up feeling like someone had had his hands on my neck and it was hard to fall back to sleep. 

So, what’s the meaning here? Well, I believe in every mystical realm and activity under the sun (tarot cards, crystals, herbal medicine, etc.) but I don’t need a scrying mirror to see my brain’s message: you are feeling strangled and suffocated in your life. 

That’s it. I just need to start doing things I love again. And the feelings of being stifled will stop. Brick wall meet sledgehammer. 

And sometimes, it’s just that easy. Try to acknowledge your brain and let it know that you hear it. That you are listening. 

Because for me? I can definitely say now that the message is wholeheartedly received. 

Push Through

The American culture is one of grit. Endurance. Determination. Pushing through pain when you’d love to stop. 

And when you get through all that? Hallelujah! You’re an American! You’ve overcome! Welcome to the rest of your life! 

But what happens when you can’t —

No such thing! 

Uhm, okay. But what happens if you–

Never! 

Yes, but–

NO! Everyone always pushes through and gets it done. 

NO! They don’t! Sometimes you just can’t take it anymore. You have to stop. You have to take a minute and lie down. You have to start over. You have to try again tomorrow. 

And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. What’s wrong with that kind of determination? The kind that whispers, “good try. We’re gonna finish this, just not right now.” Isn’t that a beautiful kind of spirit too? Not just slogging through to finish, but to keep going, a little at a time?

Sometimes, I’ll admit it, I just can’t. And so I stop. And I’m ashamed. But I shouldn’t be. Because I’m not being fair to my best self when I keep going. I may win the day when I push through, but at what cost? 

So, I’m not going to be afraid when I take a break. And even more so, I’m going to admit that I actually need one. 

Dreamy

I don’t dream very often. Or rather, to be absolutely correct, I don’t remember my dreams very often. I put my head on the pillow and the next thing I know is that my alarm is going off, and it shouldn’t go off for another 7 hours and–oh, it’s time to wake up. 

And as for dreams? There’s no time. I have to get my beauty rest and worry about the future of the human race before bed. Who even has enough time to dream? 

Well, unfortunately, all of us. At least once in awhile. And probably Freud has a lot to say about it, but for me, when It comes time to dream, it’s intense. And the symbolism is so obvious and so apparent that I’m almost embarrassed for myself in my sleep. It’s like I wake up and just cringe. Oh. So I was naked in front of the whole school because I’m worried about the talent show. Right. No, no, that makes perfect sense. 

So, if you’re like me, and you don’t really dream, then pay attention when you do. 

Your brain is really trying to tell you something and its best course of action is to slip it into your thoughts when you’re sleeping (since it knows it’s too busy during the day). The least that you can do is listen to it. 

Finding Peace

If I told you that peace can be found in a quiet room, between a stack of books at a library, in a sunlit copse of trees, on a boat in the middle of the ocean, or perhaps even in the smell of lavender or coffee, you would probably believe me, right?

Because in our minds, these are peaceful things. They seem to invite us in, they are quiet and comforting, and, whether we realize it or not, we expect them to grant their effects instantaneously. For example, wrapping your hands around a warm mug of coffee on an autumn day with the steam rising in your face is going to immediately transport you into a relaxed, if not comatose, state, is it not?

But unfortunately, peace can’t be found in a thing. It can only be found within you.

How do I know this? Well, as you know, I’m struggling to keep my blood pressure down, and one of the biggest problems I have is that I keep thinking about how high my blood pressure is. Which, as you could have guessed, raises it further (maybe if I stop talking about it every night on this blog I would see a difference?)

And if you’ve ever been told not to think about something, then I don’t have to tell you that it’s all you think about. So, knowing that I simply need to calm down and stop dwelling are two different tasks. But nonetheless, I’ve attempted to seek peace to lower my BP. I’ve hummed my favorite songs, counted my breaths, and even tried yoga positions in the shower, to no avail. I keep telling myself, All you have to do is calm down. That’s it. If you just relax, you won’t have to feel this way anymore. 

Which is all fine and good. Except, telling yourself to relax is like trying to tell an elephant not to be so large. You can’t help the way you are made. So, I have also turned to the initial methods that I described: envisioning a calm ocean, sipping on tea or coffee, and smelling lavender to distract me further. Also to no avail.

Of course, we all have a hard time realizing that peace is simply inside of us. Because we think, If I can just set the kids down for a nap or If I just take a long weekend next week or If I just drown myself in good music and good books then I can become centered and stay afloat.

But my body knows that isn’t true, and so does yours. Because the more you try to ignore your problems (like blood pressure) with meaningless images of quiet rooms or trees or situations where you can “finally” kick back, the more you stress out by trying to get there, ignoring the present moment completely. If you stop trying to find peace, ironically, you’ll find it.

Why? Because you will already be living it.

I. Am. Tired

Author’s Note: This may be the last you hear from me for a little bit. Unfortunately, my computer passed away, and I will need time to find a replacement. I will do my best to post when I can. Thanks for understanding!

I’m exhausted. I’m drained. I’m tired. And I have spent the last hour debating on whether I should even write tonight, or if I should just sneak off to bed and deal with the mob and the pitchforks outside my window tomorrow. Because, as I’ve stated, I’m exhausted. I’m drained. I’m tired.

And the more I think about how tired I am and how I have virtually nothing to say to you, kind people of the blogosphere, I realize that I do have something to say to you: I’m exhausted. I’m drained. I’m tired.

Because I got to thinking: why do we say we’re tired? Just to complain? Or are we letting ourselves know? Are we finally acknowledging it out loud? Because if you’re anything like me, you’ve been attempting to stifle any exhaustion for weeks now. You’ve satiated your body with quick cat naps and promises that you’ll tuck yourself in early tonight.

But work calls. A reader out there needs you. Or maybe it’s just a really funny cat video. But we all know the end result: you’re up to see the sun rise as well. And if we don’t admit to ourselves that we’re actually in pain from ignoring our own needs, if we pretend that being tired is our norm, it becomes this heavy suit of armor that we wear all of the time that protects us but drags us down.

So, I’ve realized that this little phrase “I’m tired” is more than a complaint, more than a compromise. It is actually a part of a huge revolution. Admitting it to yourself will help you to take the necessary steps to take care of you, in whatever way possible. Sleep, health, relationships, whatever. I’m tired is the beginning and ending of any change you want to make in your life. You simply have to be tired enough of your current lifestyle to make the leap.

And make the leap I shall. Tonight, it is only the leap into my bed. But tomorrow? It shall be the world.