Monday, March 09, 2015

Post Snow Day Lethargy: A Not-So-Manic Monday

Round 4 with the Snow
It’s been cold, warm, icy, snowy, melty, muddy, and messy these last few weeks in Virginia. The kids have had so many “snow days” that their school is adding hours to the school week and taking away Memorial Day. I know! How dare they?! But right now, it’s 52 degrees (I know this because my husband keeps coming in the house and enthusiastically announcing the temperature) and its partially sunny, AND there are no kids underfoot. 

Wow. The silence is deafening. No computer beeping and booping as my son plays Minecraft. No TV playing the theme song to The Office every 23 minutes as Netflix automatically rolls through episode after episode. (Occasionally, my teenage daughter would glance up from Instagram to let Netflix know she was still “watching”.) No husband barking at the kids to clean up the puddle of mud and drenched gloves and snow boots from when they went outside to play in the mud snow.

It is so quiet I can hear the fridge humming, the ice clinking from the maker to the ice tray, and the keys clicking on my Macbook as I type this. *pauses to listen* I could actually accomplish something today…if I could figure out how to get my lazy butt up off the couch from whence I am writing this.

Is it sad of me to admit that I have no energy? Even mustering the enthusiasm to get up and pour myself another cup of coffee isn’t happening, and y’all know how much I love my coffee. What is wrong with me? *pulls greasy hair back in a ponytail* I haven’t worked out, showered, or dear Lord, even brushed my teeth yet and its already past noon. (Thank God they haven’t invented Touch Screen Scratch ’n Sniff, yet)

I wish I could say that this is an anomaly, but it happens every time I have a long weekend with the family, and frankly, I’m tempted to give in to this lethargy every single Monday. I know, I know. I am incredibly lazy. *hangs head in shame* Here I have one of the best jobs in the world—working from home, and I totally get it when my mom friends who have to work outside the home say they want to smack me for even complaining about this.

The Laundry Monster
BUUUUUT…it happens. So what’s the deal with the not-so-manic Mondays? As I sit here pondering in my oldest pair of yoga pants, I think I’m starting to get it. You know how we’re always trying to take care of our families? Not just the cooking, cleaning, and the laundry (dear God, the laundry!), but also making sure the kids aren’t eating entire bags of Doritos and going over math homework that makes my brain implode, so we spend hours looking this crap up on the internet?

What about helping the hubs book a flight on Delta for his next business trip, planning healthy meals so we don’t throw a frozen lasagna in the oven every night and beating myself up because the orange-glazed chicken with sautéed wild mushrooms and quinoa ended up being thrown in the crockpot? Did I mention baking and administering medicinal dog treats so the dog’s anal glands won’t explode, again? (yes, sadly, the dog’s butt is also something I must keep an eye on *winces*)

On top of the normal hoo-ha, when the kids have all these snow days I feel compelled to spend time with them, play games, come up with appropriate activities,  “get things done” that we don’t seem to have time for otherwise, and generally, vainly attempt to head off the cabin-fever frenzy. 

It’s really no wonder that I collapse on the bed couch when I they finally leave the house to go back to school. Isn’t it?? Please say yes.

I’m trying to embrace this moment, folks. I’m trying to allow myself to recover, rest, stare blankly at the wall…whatever it takes, whatever my brain and body need to get back to normal. Whatever normal is.  

One thing practicing yoga has taught me is that rest is as necessary as work. Ever take a yoga class? You know how they make you lie down at the end and take a little siesta? Well, in case you haven’t experienced this, at the end of yoga class, the instructor has you lie down on your back, close your eyes and wonder what the heck is going to happen now? And is she looking at the coffee stain on your shirt? (She is but she won't say a word about it. I promise. ;-) ) Then she says something about breathing, letting go of tension, yada yada yada.

Why is there nap time at the end of yoga? Well, its all about giving our brain and body a chance to chill. We've been active, so then it’s time to uh, not be active so our bodies and minds can relax into this new state we've created with all our moving around. You know how when you'd cram for an exam you would hit a point where you couldn't process one more iota of information until you took a break for awhile? It's like that.

We need this kind of downtime off the mat too, and when we force ourselves through the slumps instead of embracing them, we create a rest deficit and work overload. It’s like a pressure tank filling up Up UP until BOOM! We explode. Sometimes we find ourselves yelling at our kids or uber sick, sniveling in bed about how we can't believe how sick we are. Some of us experience anxiety attacks or pick fights with our partners. Some of us get depressed. Some of us binge eat. There’s a lot of coping mechanisms for being overtired and worn out. (BTW, these are all warning signs that you're not managing your stress.)

Maybe if we take the time to lie around in our PJs once in a while, we may prevent some of this stuff.

So, I have declared today a rest day. Mostly. The laundry is growling. I must tend to that at least before the smelly monster crawls out from under my daughter’s bed.

Do you have similar episodes of disfunction? When are you most likely to hit the wall? 
Have you learned to rest when you need to or are you like me, still figuring it out? 
Have you gotten out of your PJs today? 
Tell me your stories so I don’t feel so bad…and don’t worry if you haven’t showered since Friday. I won’t tell anyone. ;-)

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