Mothering Monday - Monday Blahs and Mommy Blues Need to Be Kicked to the Curb

For no particular reason the blues have returned, and it also happens to be Monday, so extra mental power is needed today.  Well, actually there are many reasons, but I have been coping with stress a little better these days.  So this must be one of those days I need to hit the PAUSE button and recalculate what is out of balance.  BALANCE is an illusion, my balanced life may not look anything like your balanced life.  BALANCE is also very fragile.  The busier my life becomes, the more cracks will appear in the veneer of seemingly balanced life.  The cracks have caught up with me today, and I'm leaking...I guess I may as well admit...they are tears. 

There I said it.  Tears are one of the long-lasting symptoms of my journey with depression, they have managed to stick around nearly two years post-partum.  Pre-pregnancy, I was one of those people that stuffed my frustrations down, and tucked away my emotions.  Really, what has crying ever truly fixed?  So I got a flat tire on the way to the airport...will crying magically fix it?  Will the mechanic fairies fly in and replace it.  NO, pick up the phone, call CAA, get the tire fixed and carry on.  I have certainly made up for all the tears I haven't shed in the first 34 years of life.  Either I must be letting my head get swamped with woes, or I am trying to do too much and getting overwhelmed.  I am more prepared for these low tides now and have a game plan to turn to on days like these.  These are some short-term fixes for my Mommy Blues and Monday Blahs:

Go For A Walk:
Exercise helps me clear my head, or even zone out for a while.  Though it is difficult to get up and out the door.  You know what it's like when motivation is low...I usually feel better for it.  This morning I went for a 50 minute power walk, which is why my post is up at noon instead of 9:00 am. 

Take A Break:
If I can't get out for a walk, I take a break.  Do some stretches, play a game, read a magazine, etc.  Set a time, 15 mins, 30 mins, 60 mins, whatever you can afford to give yourself.  I could sit in front of the computer and force out an email, or write an article, but every task suffers from forced sentiment.  Productivity will improve if I check out for a few minutes, or even hours. 

Call A Friend or Loved One for a Pep Talk:
Just don't call the people that annoy you, save that for another day.  I'd like to say I was kidding but I'm not.  A good laugh, cry, or venting session can help clear my head.  Sometimes a good friend can offer wisdom or simple solutions too.  I recently called a friend and the converation went like this:

Me: "Hey, it's been a crazy weekend..." *Then I went on with 5 minutes of rambling and general malaise.*
Friend: "Have you eaten yet?". 
Me: "No."
Friend: "Go eat, then wait 10 minutes and call me back." 

Get A Snack:
How many days have I reached the 2:00 pm mark and realized that all I had to eat that day was a bite of toast or three scoops of my daughter's leftover cereal? So making a plan to feed my body, also helps combat my mood swings too. If I have eaten, but still need a pick-me-up, I try to stick to non-food treats, or healthy snacks. The $1.00 drink promotion is back on at McDonald's. I was happy to learn that they have added ICED COFFEE to their list of beverages included in the promo, it is a nice, inexpensive treat. The nearest McD's is a 25 minute walk up hill, so I get to mix my caffeine burst with exercise too.

Give Yourself a Reality Check/Write a List of Short Term Goals:
I am one of those people that are kept awake with plans, priorities, and problems swirling in my head.  If I do manage to fall alseep, I wake up frequently with the same marathon of ideas.  Worrying or thinking about anything too far in the future is not productive when my brain is in a slump.  And we all have only 24 hours in a day.  So I need to find a way to STOP the running dialogue in my brain.  Keeping a notepad and pen beside my bed helps, daily/weekly lists are good  too.  After my walk and my caffeine break, I sat and wrote a three columned list.
1) Appointments and deadlines for the week.
2) What needs to be done today.
3) What tasks can wait for another day.

After these simple tasks, my list for today is actually shorter than it seemed when bouncing around in my head.  The Monday Blahs and Mommy Blues seem to be kicked aside for now.  And the tasks for today are seeming a little more managable.  Here's hoping for a sweet naptime for Princess Destructo, so I can tackle my To Do List.


Anonymous said...

Really great advice but a little sad that I didn't know you felt that way while I was sitting in your living room. :(

Amy said...

Your visit was a hightlight of the day. There was no point raining on the parade. The blues come and go at random, so I don't want to drag other people down into them too.

mmbear said...

Hi Amy, thanks for coming by my blog. I really appreciate each and every follower because I know we have all worked really hard to get them. I came back and am following your blog thru GFC and Twitter. I tried Networked Blogs but it just kept going round and round so I will come back later and see if I can get it to go. I have had a weird message from them alot lately. They say they are limiting accounts to 200 but I am only around 86 or so. So, I am not nowhere near 200 so why are you telling me I have reached my limit? Have you gotten that message before? So, I went thru the ones I really did not need to follow so when I came here I had a few spots still left so it should have went thru. Of course, my computer just got hung up last night right in the middle of entering a contest and never would let me back on that site until today. Go figure. I think computers are great but they are also a pain! I hope you get to a better place. I struggle also but for a different reason. I have chronic pain and am on pain meds and alot of other meds and some days I just have to give in to the fatigue and sleep it off. I hope the rest of your week has been better.


Blue Cotton Memory said...

Hope you're feeling better! When I get the blues - sometimes crying just releases all the pent up emotions and washes everything out. I never had post-partum depression - but I do get down every now and then. Your suggestions were so helpful!

Amy said...

Thanks everyone, the mood got a little brighter as the week went on.
mmbear- I haven't had any problems connecting with Networked Blogs, or GFC. Most of my issues are with posting comments on blogger sites, and generally getting dumped back to sign in screen while writing & editing posts, and using gmail. I try to connect with my followers in other ways. I agree, every follower is special and appreciated.

Blue Cotton Memory- Crying should help release tension, at least my 2 year old does enough of it for the both of us :) I used to see crying as a sign of weakness, now seem to have little control over it at all. Thanks for stopping by.