Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Faking It

My friend Kerry once told me "Wow you're really good at faking it..."

Now if you have a dirty mind you can take this one direction, but what she meant was that I can mask my stress, frustration, anxiety, etc.. and leave people to believe I feel like this:

This is me today before my run.  This is my normal everyday smile that I put on for my coworkers, my boss, my daycare provider, my friends, my child.....  I think the bright colored shirt is even more of a trick....

I think the only person that really sees how unravelled I've become is my husband.  He sees the true toll my stress takes on me, he deals with me, my grumpiness, my exhaustion, my migraines.  What a guy right?

Unlike this smiley photo of me, my life right now isn't happy and sunny.  On my run tonight, I was trying to think of the perfect word to describe how I've been feeling lately.


I feel like I'm drowning in stress.  The stress of being a full time working mother.  The stress of working full time while trying to finish writing my PhD.  The stress of keeping up with the normal day to day home tasks (cooking, cleaning, laundry etc).  The stress of my workaholic boss drowning me in work and pressuring me to work 110% all the time at a job I dread going to.

I'm drowning in guilt.  Guilt from dropping my kid off at a daycare everyday and only seeing her 2 hours a day during the week. Guilt from dumping my stress on my husband and pressuring him to fix things (ie get a better paying job so I can stay home).

I even feel like I'm drowning in health problems.  The last few weeks I started getting debilitating migraines.  I normally would only get them a few times a year, but I've had 4 or 5 this MONTH alone.  These migraines make it impossible for me to function.  Most times I can't even get out of bed, except to throw up.  I can't stand light, noise, food, my child, anything.  I feel like being put in a coma.  Finally I went to my doctor and found out my BP was 177/110.  Holy Shit.   So for those of you that dont' ever really think about blood pressures-----normal is 120/80.  Never in my life has that happened.  The doctors and nurses thought that it was a mistake, they tested me 5 times in both arms with two different machines.  My doc told me if I didn't get my pressure down I could have a stroke.  Yikes.  My first thought was that this is stress.  I feel more stressed right now than I have my entire life.  The only times I ever felt like this were times like my Masters defense and my Qualifying exams, but those lasted 4 hours, not 8 months.

So Doc put me on blood pressure medication and made me follow up this week.  When I went back this week my BP had only come down slightly.  I am just so frustrated.  All this work to lose weight, exercise, eat clean, have stress relieving hobbies, not even taking blood pressure medication worked.  I refuse to accept that this is my fate, taking blood pressure medication everyday of my life starting at age 29.  Something's gotta give, and it's not going to be family.

Needless to say my husband and I have some pretty important decisions to make.

Now to end this post on a less dramatic note......

We took Mimi fishing this weekend at a family fishing event, and me, a fisheries and aquatic sciences major could not even catch my daughter a blue gill :-(  but we had fun anyway...

1 comment:

Laura said...

Ok, so is there any type of stress leave you can take, I know you live in capitilist USA but man, you would be off on stress leave if you lived here...that's paid stress leave.

I really worry about you, you need to look after yourself. Could you afford to work part time? could you just concentrate on finishing the PhD and teach part time? I am not sure what's available there but you are right some major changes have to come!

I once worked for a horrid boss and I couldn't get pregnant while working for her, the stress was effecting me so much. The day I left that job I got pregnant with Kaleb so stress is a powerful thing!

Good luck Jen, I am in Florida on April 20th and we should meet up! I am way down in Naples but maybe we can meet some where in the middle!