Who Needs Sleep? I do

Songs: “Brave” and “King of Anything,” by Sarah Bareilles; and “Counting Stars,” One Republic
Lately I’ve been loosing sleep. I wish it was just because I’ve been thinking about what my family could be, but it’s more work and sinus induced.
Getting home from work at 4 a.m. and getting up three hours later to get kids ready for school, can make anyone sleepy. It makes me want to throw everything away just so I can get full eight, uninterrupted hours of dream-filled bliss.
While having these short nights, I have been having very long days either with the kids or at whatever tasks I’ve been doing.
I keep reminding myself that I’m doing it for the family. After almost a month of putting in these long days, I’m finding it harder to convince myself of that.
I admit, I have taken a day off here and there, but that usually means I get the kids up at 7, and go to sleep when they leave for school until my youngest son gets up. After he’s up we jog and try to catch up on chores.
It reminds me of my failed attempt at marathon training. I kept working at it for a few months, but the fun and enjoyment disappeared. I love the things I been doing, but I miss my family and being able to do things without worrying if it’s cutting into other projects.
That’s why when I see my kids now, I try to make the time meaningful. While I have been called the worse mom ever during these recent weeks, I’ve also been told that I’m a treasure and that I’m loved. I enjoyed some special moments that seem so much more vivid and closer to my heart because of our current lack of face time.
Unfortunately, this lack of sleep has also made me cranky some times. It amazing how things seem jumbled together and yet you have these moments of clarity when your sleep is compromised. One minute, you’re ready destroy whatever gets between you and your coffee, the next you’re reminding yourself how you love everyone and coffee will come to those who make it.
When I have trouble concentrating due to exhaustion and no one’s around, I give myself a pep talk. Or I start singing one of the songs above.
The two Sara Bareilles songs remind me of how I need to speak up when I know there’s something wrong. Since I’ve started running, I’ve been more vocal in sharing my viewpoints. For certain people, it’s scary. I’ve been in their lives a long time and to speak my mind without reservations (i.e. In the past, I usually said “I think we should do this. If that OK with you.”) is mind-blowing.
Recently, my daughter’s “boyfriend” started seeing someone else. Her dad remarked on how she shouldn’t go back to the same boyfriend and expect a different result. He also said he hates people who do that. In my sleeplessness moment of clarity, I pointed to several relationships I had that were like that. Each are in a different state of flux. Should I expect a different outcome or should I accept that the relationship cycle will continue?
“Counting Stars” reminds me to stay true to myself and look to the future. When I hear it, I envision someone my age (“I’m young but not that bold”) looking at his family and hoping for a brighter future. I’m looking for that too.
Everything that kills me, does make me feel like I’m alive. In the past month, due to my own stupidity or need to get it done, I’ve cleared a yard of kudzu and repaired a roof and ceiling. I conquered my fear of heights and vines. I’m ready to know what’s next.
I think I know what’s next running wise. I’m aiming to do two marathons in 2014 and a half Ironman and marathon in 2015. I originally planned to do the 2014 Runner’s World Festival hat trick (three races in two days), but I really want to spend time with my family in 2014.
It may be the lack of sleep talking, but I feel like they’re doable goals. I also think I’m going to do some fundraising.
Instead of counting money, my family will eventually enjoy life and count stars. Here’s to hoping this hard work to pay off and to get a decent night’s sleep.
P.S. On Thursday, learn more about Gene’s Run at my work-hosted blog, Keeping Pace, at thedpost.com. The organizer and owner of Gene’s are really great people, it was an honor to talk with them. I’ll post something on the Facebook page with a link once it’s up.

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