Somedays it's hard to breathe.

Hard to take a breath big enough to reach into the bottom of my lungs, filling them to capacity, puffing my chest out, and giving my body enough oxygen.


This past little while has felt a lot like that. I have been really, really, really busy lately, and everything in me just wants to lay down and sleep until I'm all out of sleep. And then get up and relax, doing stuff I actually want to do, not just stuff that is scheduled, and then oversheduled, and then triple scheduled (who ever heard of a stag and doe, and a part-time job, and Father's day on ONE FREAKING WEEKEND???).

Every new entry on the calendar feels like another puncture in my lungs, stopping me from breathing, from living, from enjoying. I feel burnt out. Again.

This feeling is not new or different from any other time that I've burnt myself out, but this time I feel like I have no way out. I feel as though this kind of thing could carry on forever and I don't know how to stop it. At least at school I could calculate, down to the minute, the moment that I would experience relief. Exams and due dates will help you do that. But in a grown-up life, where I get to "pick" my activities, it just doesn't work that way.

My husband says I should just tell them all no. No to your committee, to your brilliant idea, to your cause, to my God. Just say no.

That is the hardest thing to do. Even as I type this, picturing myself saying no, my stomach is tying in knots.

I keep saying that I don't know how. I'm not sure how to turn it all off, find peace, and refrain from participating. The troubling thing is I don't think anyone can teach me either.

So here I sit, slowly getting swallowed up whole by my schedule, slowly getting eaten alive, and all I can do is pray I can make it through the next thing without getting mad, freaking out, and potentially killing a friendship or seven.

Deep breaths, right? That will help?

I think I need more.

At the very least I know I'm in trouble. I mean, anyone who can fall blisfully asleep, complete with snoring, during deep tissue massage therapy 2 sessions in a row, because it is the only time that person is allowed to stop and close their eyes and just be, needs some downtime, right?



leendaluu said...

Thanks for the sage advice to my grad. Now I have some for you :) because I am exceedingly overscheduled and competitive and find myself in your shoes evey six months. It's easy for people to tell you to say no (my husband does all the time), but they don't live in our heads. I start with just saying no to the little things--it's empowering and gives you courage to start saying no to the bigger things (this second part I'm still working on but I think I am getting better).

I don't know you , but I sense you are smart. You made it through school. You're capable. And you will find your way. Don't worry.

Hmmmmm where have i heard that before? :)

Julia said...

Thank you for your advice! It makes me feel better that I'm not alone in my insanity. And as my husband and I stayed up late last night preparing crafts for the upcoming vacation bible school I'm helping to run next week (yes, while still working), I realize that I'm not completely nuts, just still in training for saying "no." :)