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Under Stress, under seige, underperforming

Friday, January 22, 2010

Stress is so powerful. A few blogs back I talked about excuses, there are always some, somewhere. I wanted to be strong under seige, stress coming at me from every quarter. I held up for awhile, then I faultered and stood back up, unsteady. Then I crumpled, I cried and I ate. I didn't totally numb with crazy amounts of carbs, but I used food as a drug. Once I crumpled, I threw in the towel. I quit bothering to exercise, or log food, or take care of myself. I did the best I could with the children, they are fairly well cared for, my 6 year old missed a few homework and physical therapy days - and with her special needs, that's important. Having a baby that's so sick, that may not make it, that's in and out of the hospital, is stress beyond imagining. Then he smiles and I remind myself to be here now with that beautiful smile and be thankful for now, that's all any of us have. I'm committed to making now as good as possible. Yesterday my 6 year old had a cardiac crisis at school, I was already shakey coming from the cystic fibrosis sweat test with the baby...my brain almost shut down, I had to make myself breathe to think of the sequence of actions I needed to take to move through the crisis. Stress is so powerful. My chest hurts just writing about it. She's okay, she recovered, no hospitalization, but a sober reminder, her life is tentative, her heart so fragile. Shook me to the core. The minutes ticked by painfully slow as I waited for the cardiology call, a half sigh of relief that we can 'wait and see' before heading to the children's hospital 2 hours away and an impeding cardiac surgery. 2 hours more of waiting for the sweat test results almost resulted in a stress response fight as my partner and I moved the refridgerator out of the house...(another stressor..), the call came just in time as our tones were becoming less friendly..it's not cystic fibrosis.. that's a huge relief. But still we have the pediactric pulmonologist...a lung biopsy..so many more hurdles. My partner and I ate hand fulls of cereal as we talked about the journey ahead and our stressful eating habits. We reinforced each other's emotional eating. We also knew how many calories the cereal was and that we could be eating potato chips and ice cream, probably would have if we had any...since I was without a fridge so long, I didn't do much shopping.. I try to not buy that stuff very often, but I still do. At least I know myself enough to know I can't totally forbid it or I would just run to the store and binge - just to have some control over something. I didn't run to the store. It's an improvement. Somehow I have to learn to manage stress with my partner, so we don't reinforce each others emotional eating as we process the stressful experiences. We are best friends and bring out the best in each other at every turn, we were being conscious as we had handulls of the cereal, but we never shifted to another method of processing, that's what we need to shift. I'm underperforming in every segment - the stress is draining me. I know exercise would help, but I can't seem to get out the door, I let other things take priority. I'm lapsing into zoning with the tv and video games for short breaks, when I know some stretches and writing would be so much more revitalizing. It's so hard to make the healthiest choices under seige. Even when the healthiest choices will sustain us the best. So I'm not calling it an excuse, but I'm acknowledging how challenging it is to be under stress, under seige and underperforming. Having let go of guilt, at least the underperforming (in housework, work, parenting, errands, etc.) isn't devastating me. When I did guilt, I would really beat myself up for underperforming, I'd be downright abusive internally. That is such a huge shift, that I can at least be trying to be healthy, in trying to sustain some good choices. When I did guilt - I did true gluttony - true binging - true hopelessness - it was a very vicious and unhealthy cylce. So, I know I'm making progress, now to keep moving in the right direction. emoticon
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  • ALIH5308
    All I can say is WOW. This is the first time I read your blog.

    I have been stressed out and shut down for several years now. I also am dealing with underperforming. It seems my brain is shut down and the things that came easy to me before are almost impossible now.

    I must say that I am not dealing with sick children. I can in no way compare myself to you but some of the things you wrote I can indentify with.

    emoticon

    Ali
    3069 days ago
  • EVER-HOPEFUL
    i have only just start reading your blogs but when i do i think she is writting about my life.how i can relate to what you are saying.my oldest son along with his many illness´s is also an encardico risk.so you are watching out for any breathing problems,cuts etc.if the school and kindergarten has any bacterisl infections going around.etc,etc.my middle son sounds like your baby.they also tested him for cycstic fibrousis,puk,amoinia disorders as well as metobolic disorders and rare heart diecieses.he didn´t have them,he had and still has a whole in the heart.but you are right sometimes the waiting is the worse part.we know what he hasn´t got but we still don´t know what it is.the dr´s overhere calls it an labens bedrohlick kranleit(lbk for short)basically it is lifetheatening but they don´t know what it is.he was on a heart and oxygen monitor for 16 months as his oxygen levels kept falling below 60%.he is a lot better now and we hope he is outgrowing whatever it is as he now only seem top go blue when he is ill or about to be ill.we now have the same problem with the baby.he has really bad asthma and also goes blue but his whole in the heart has now closed by it self.yesturday was a very stressful day as scharlach (speptoccosis angina)is going round ayyub class and as he has fever and was crying with pain the night before last we were the whole day yesturday at dr´s getting him checked out as could be very leathful for him and especially his older brother if he gets it,means a valve transplant of the heart.but luckily it is just a viral infection but the stress and the holding the breath,the peying etc while you are waiting for the results seems some times unbearible but some how we manage it.if our housework sufferers in the process then so be it.my place mostly looks like a bombs hit it.what with the time for medication,physio therapy,dr´s,hospitals,specialist etc you wonderer where you find the time to turn let alone prepare a healthy meal etc.but we must do it.we have to as we have to be around along time for our kids as they need us.i am doing this for my kids so that i can be there for them,the stress,we have to learn other ways to deal with it other than eating,the guilt we have to learn to forgive and accept.the lack of time we have to do our best and prioritise.the other day a councillor i had to see said she is amased how well i managed with three small children with special needs and asked how i did it.my answer to her was.do i have a choice?and you wouldn´t think i managed so well if you saw my house.i also thought but didn´t say.have you not looked at me probably,don´t you see how big i am.i managed by stuff everything in me to cope with the stress.but she didn´t see it.so much for qualified people who can´t see infront of their noses.one day it would be nice if they could offer practicle solutions or help instead of mouthing empty words of amasement.all i could think off in the time i was there was of all the things i could be doing insteed of sitting here with you.the unleft house work,sleeping etc.etc.then to top it all and the end of the meeting she said.i know how busy your schedule is so i will make it easier for you and we will meet every three weeks.the school says i should go to this councilling if i am to keep my son in the normal school.so on top of the physio therapy for two of my children,logopedie for two of them,ergotherapy for one of them,verhaltungs therapy for one.dr´s and specialist appointments,medicine etc i now have to find time to sit with this lady for 1 hour(2hours gone in total with getting there and back)every three weeks.yippee for me.
    sorry i transgress.just to let you know you are not on your own with theese feelings and we just have to try and prepare ourselves for theese stress times by having good snacks available and ready.shall we both give it a try together?
    3072 days ago
  • F8CONE8
    When I read your blogs it helps put my life in perspective. I don't know how you manage but somehow you do. Hugs forever to you and Susan.
    3072 days ago
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