Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Tired spirals

I am used to being busy. As a college student I balanced a job, activities, and a varsity sport along with classes. After graduation I worked eighty hour weeks as a teacher, regularly waking at 4 am to get papers graded. I then earned a masters degree while working full time.

But being a stay-at-home parent is different. I am not over-scheduled like I was as a student athlete, or drowning in paperwork as I was as a teacher. Except when one of the children is sick, I am not pulling the "all-nighters" that I did in graduate school. Overscheduling, lack of sleep, and balancing work and school made me very tired (see this post for verification of my energy level last spring).

I am not as physically tired as I was then. I am sleeping a solid six or seven hours per night, eating well, and getting exercise. I do have momentary spells of psychic tiredness however. When Agent 002 ignores my third call to "be gentle" with the cat, when Agent 004 wiggles into her own poop during a diaper change, or when the two agents whine simultaneously. I am ashamed to admit that once in a while, I am even get tired of Agent 004 clinging to my leg.

When I am tired, I am impatient. And when I get impatient, the spiral begins. Agent 002 misbehaves and Agent 004 cries for attention. Which makes me more tired. Which makes him act up and her grumpy. Which make me more tired........

I have noticed that the spiral usually begins with me, and have gotten much better at preventing it. But even I do not have the energy to be on all the time..... fortunately my parents' house is a short drive away.

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