Backed In a Corner

I think stress has totally rewired me on the inside. This last year and still now, the stress in my life has conspired to change everything for me. How I write, how I deal with my day, how I sleep at night. Pretty much everything. For the foreseeable future, things are not going to change. That means I need to live with this monkey on my back.

In the past, I’ve deal with mega-stress. I’ve suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder from the onset of sudden massive stress like my parents dying 6 months apart.  I’m beyond that now and I haven’t felt those odd disassociated pangs and horrific nightmares in many years.

The stress I deal with now is insidious and grows exponentially depending upon the moods of those around me, my workload, my deadlines, money, the demands of my kid, how much my body hurts, and how tired I am at any given time. The ebb and flow of high or higher stress is nothing like the 500 pound gorilla suddenly in my face stress I suffered in the past. But it comes with its own set of inherent issues.

Since the way I do virtually everything seems to have changed monumentally in the past year, I think I need to sit down and strategize how to do what I need to do while under the influence of this new type of stress. How I deal with deadlines is a good example. In the past, I would work away at my manuscripts every weekend without fail. Now, every weekend, I nap. A lot. I don’t turn on my IM. I don’t do anything but futz a little, delete my email, and nap. Then I realize I have a deadline and I push myself for a few days at high speed, operating on very little sleep in order to get things done. I back myself in a corner and go on an all nighter for several nights in a row until I’ve forced myself to do what needed to be done.

I could have just made myself work an hour a day on the damn writing, but oh, no I had I procrastinate and feel the stress and do nothing until I hit panic mode while sitting in that corner I backed myself into. And I don’t know why I’m doing this to myself. I astound me. In my head, I know better. A lot better. But do I listen to myself? Do I make myself do what needs to be done?

NO.  I nap.

Now that I’ve decided that stress has rewired me, I have to figure out to wire myself to hit deadlines and other things better. Some people will say it’s a lack of discipline that is causing this. In some ways, they might be right. For the most part, they are not.

For decades I’ve suffered from insomnia. Now, I seem to have the need to catch up on all those hours of sleep I lost over the years. Hence my weekends spent sleeping I think. I’m just damned tired and when I try to do the right thing, I fall asleep at my desk trying to do it. I often feel like my insomnia has morphed into narcolepsy.

Acknowledging that my life is beyond different and I can’t do things the way I used to even a year ago is a big step. I’m hoping I can come to some sort of agreement with myself that leads me out of this corner I’ve backed myself into. Baby steps I tell myself. Just ease into it. Cold turkey might be way too much…although it worked with cigarettes when I got pregnant with Nikki. At any rate, this easing myself out of the corner may mean I’ll drop a post into this blog a bit more often than just Mondays. I did it this week. We’ll see how it goes rolling forward.

Now, it’s time for a lovely Marcus. I missed him last week!

Here he is with some hot companionship for those of you who like women. 🙂

Wishing you a stress fee Monday!

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12 Responses to Backed In a Corner

  1. martymankins says:

    I can so relate to how much stress has changed me as a person. Lots of things to do and hardly any time to do them in. While I know I see you as someone that has moved beyond that and made time to do the great written works you’ve done so far (yes, I do feel they are great works), it gives those of us that let distractions in life the encouragement to move past the bullshit and just do what you want to do.

  2. martymankins says:

    I can so relate to how much stress has changed me as a person. Lots of things to do and hardly any time to do them in. While I know I see you as someone that has moved beyond that and made time to do the great written works you’ve done so far (yes, I do feel they are great works), it gives those of us that let distractions in life the encouragement to move past the bullshit and just do what you want to do.

  3. Meeting deadlines is important.

    Taking care of yourself is MORE important. You’re strong, and you try to push yourself to achieve, which is great. Sometimes, though, your body and mind just need a break.

    I’m with Carol on talking to your doctor. Meanwhile, do what you need to do for your job, your writing career, and most of all for yourself and your health.

  4. Meeting deadlines is important.

    Taking care of yourself is MORE important. You’re strong, and you try to push yourself to achieve, which is great. Sometimes, though, your body and mind just need a break.

    I’m with Carol on talking to your doctor. Meanwhile, do what you need to do for your job, your writing career, and most of all for yourself and your health.

  5. Carol says:

    You’re doing the best thing for starters. You’re facing it.
    Your body could be changing and your psyche is trying to catch up with the changes. Some call it depression, and I can speak from experience that depression happens to all of us when body and mind collide in a fight for supremacy.

    Either way, maybe you should talk to your physician and tell him what you’re going through.

    Hang in there, lady. Like I said, you’re facing it. And that’s a step in the right direction.

  6. Carol says:

    You’re doing the best thing for starters. You’re facing it.
    Your body could be changing and your psyche is trying to catch up with the changes. Some call it depression, and I can speak from experience that depression happens to all of us when body and mind collide in a fight for supremacy.

    Either way, maybe you should talk to your physician and tell him what you’re going through.

    Hang in there, lady. Like I said, you’re facing it. And that’s a step in the right direction.

  7. Winter says:

    Hilly – Sometimes the sleep contains a healing too. Something we need to give us the strength to deal. I push myself with the wrong things sometimes. I’ve just got to recalculate the balances. Not a pleasant prospect although the end result should be less stress. Theoretically anyway. LOL

    Lisa – My parents have been gone more than 20 years now. It took me a good ten years to lose the PTSD. I had their sudden deaths, the loss of my home, my pet of 13 years and all my belongings, and a number of other very serious shocks to withstand in a very short time frame. The shrink I saw told me what I felt and my reactions were very normal for most people. I learned to work through a lot of the mess inside me. I was surviving even without her help, but her help made sense of it all for me that much quicker and made me understand that it was okay to feel what I felt. I had the insomnia long before this happened, but the shocks I suffered shut me down where I slept all the time – not like now but in a different way. Then I resumed the insomnia with a vengeance. What I’m going through now with sleep is really different which is probably why it bothers me so much.

  8. Winter says:

    Hilly – Sometimes the sleep contains a healing too. Something we need to give us the strength to deal. I push myself with the wrong things sometimes. I’ve just got to recalculate the balances. Not a pleasant prospect although the end result should be less stress. Theoretically anyway. LOL

    Lisa – My parents have been gone more than 20 years now. It took me a good ten years to lose the PTSD. I had their sudden deaths, the loss of my home, my pet of 13 years and all my belongings, and a number of other very serious shocks to withstand in a very short time frame. The shrink I saw told me what I felt and my reactions were very normal for most people. I learned to work through a lot of the mess inside me. I was surviving even without her help, but her help made sense of it all for me that much quicker and made me understand that it was okay to feel what I felt. I had the insomnia long before this happened, but the shocks I suffered shut me down where I slept all the time – not like now but in a different way. Then I resumed the insomnia with a vengeance. What I’m going through now with sleep is really different which is probably why it bothers me so much.

  9. Lisa Lane says:

    Trauma can do a lot to a person; I feel for you. My condolances for your losses. My grandmother just passed away, and everything seemed to go on hold for about a week or so … I just froze, the world fading ito a strange and confusing fog. About nine years ago, I lost two grandparents and two very close friends in a matter of four months, and it just about did me in. I too have suffered from terrible insomnia, and I know what it can do to a person when chronic. Take care; you seem like a strong person.

  10. Lisa Lane says:

    Trauma can do a lot to a person; I feel for you. My condolances for your losses. My grandmother just passed away, and everything seemed to go on hold for about a week or so … I just froze, the world fading ito a strange and confusing fog. About nine years ago, I lost two grandparents and two very close friends in a matter of four months, and it just about did me in. I too have suffered from terrible insomnia, and I know what it can do to a person when chronic. Take care; you seem like a strong person.

  11. Hilly says:

    When I lived in Florida, I napped A LOT. My life had way too much stress and sadness and anger and sleeping half of the day away made time pass quickly, I suppose.

    It wasn’t until I started forcing myself awake and forcing myself to deal that things got easier. I know you know this already but yanno, just reiterating. Blah blah.

    🙂

  12. Hilly says:

    When I lived in Florida, I napped A LOT. My life had way too much stress and sadness and anger and sleeping half of the day away made time pass quickly, I suppose.

    It wasn’t until I started forcing myself awake and forcing myself to deal that things got easier. I know you know this already but yanno, just reiterating. Blah blah.

    🙂