Sleepless in Appalachia

It’s 1:47 a.m. I just got home from work. I’m tired but not enough to sleep. I have to get up in four and a half hours to start the daily get-the-kids-ready-for-school ritual.

I haven’t posted in a while because of nights like this. Runners need sleep. Mamas need sleep. I need sleep.

But here I am, wired. I could read but then I’d wake someone with my light. So I sit in the dark, staring at yet another keyboard, like my ones at work aren’t good enough for me.

I’ve been rather introspective the past few weeks or so. I haven’t really felt like sharing. When you’re near the verge of tears every minute of a 48-hour stretch, you want to let it out but don’t. The explosion of emotion may cause too much damage.

I’m reminded of the sentiment that people never have to do something alone as they have support from friends and family. While it is OK for some instances, there are points where you have to do it yourself. It’s only after you make that first few steps in the right direction that you can call your friends over to let them know of the upcoming journey.

I have a 3-year-old who is the best candy-wrangler at parades I know. When he yells “candy” like the Hulk and gets into beast mode, he makes me laugh.

He also picked up some bad habits from myself and his siblings. These habits break my heart because he just doesn’t get it. He thinks he’s playing.

Lack of sleep, makes people do stupid things. And this has been a constant problem in my dealing with the kids. I tend to get a little loopy at first, like someone who has reached his or her alcohol limit. As the days wear on, I start becoming the mean perfectionist, and criticize everyone and everything.

I saw the perfectionist make an appearance during the past weekend. The kids weren’t cleaning fast enough, the house and their hands were still coated in green food coloring (my kids decided to decorate for St. Patrick’s day when I went for an eight-mile run the day before), and I was getting sick. I was tired, cranky and didn’t want to deal with anyone’s drama.

When we finally when to church, I must admit, I slept a bit. I also prayed. A lot. I didn’t complain, I just wanted guidance. The green dye was the straw that broke my back. I can only do so much and I needed strength. I also needed clarity and the ability to forgive.

I have always had a hard time forgiving people for their deeds. The kids constant fighting, the seeming inability to keep my family bathed, clothes and fed … It got to me. And it was compounded by work.

Once I said my amen, I still didn’t have a clue what I was going to do. But I had a better sense of what not to do.

So we went home, had lunch and I napped. It was an half hour or so, but it was heavenly. I was ready for anything.

I feel like I’m out in the snow again. I know where the path is suppose to be but it’s covered with snow and ice. I have to be more careful yet I also need to let go. If you are rigid on the ice, you’re more likely to slip. If you go with the flow, you’re less likely to fall.

Now to go with the flow and get some sleep. Tomorrow is another day, a great day. The flowers are starting to bloom, so spring and new beginnings must be coming soon.

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