Monday, August 4, 2008

How to Handle Stress 101

I didn't used to handle conflict well. I still am pretty bad at it, but not in the same way.

I have the spiritual gift of prophecy. That means I am compelled to speak the truth -- always, no matter where, no matter when. I used to blurt it out. This tended to create conflict.

Now I am a little better with timing. I am told this is called "tact."

Also, I used to hold everything in until I just blew up. Or I would just blow up because it was too much at one time. I was Volcano Mom. My kids can tell you, and I have begged God to erase their memories (and my own) of all the times I was a Volcano Mom. I have now figured out that it had to do with too much information coming in.

Perhaps I am autistic. Seriously, I should investigate that. Or perhaps I am just a serious introvert who is incapable of controlling the volcano.

Now I do better. Of course, I take crazy drugs, so I am somewhat tactful and I can handle the normal amount of information coming in.

(However, I am still crazy, the good kind of crazy -- I now have a bruise on my right elbow from my persistence in trying to hug my daughter. Bug is in her "I vant to be alooone" stage, which she frequents frequently, and so I wrestled her to the kitchen floor on Saturday. But I got my hug!)

Anyway -- I say all this because I have become a sounding board for a couple of people. What a compliment!

I try to be a good listener because I am a very bad one by nature. I just wanna talk about me. I love that quote from "Beaches" where Bette Midler says

"But enough about me. Let's talk about you. What do you think of me?"

So I've been listening lately to some frustrated people, and that has totally stressed me out. But not in a bad way -- rather, in an empathetic way. This is unusual for me, since I approach most problems with a "that's life, deal with it" sort of attitude. Although the cry of my early life was "But Mom, it's not fair!" I quickly changed when I became a Mom and had to answer questions like "But how come she gets one and I don't?" I responded by saying "Because I love her more than you."

I really do still say that. Respond to a ridiculous question with a ridiculous answer. My kids have always understood that.

So last Wednesday night, I decided enough with all this stress, I'm taking a sleeping pill and forgetting it all. I won't dream crazy dreams that make me tired, and I won't wake up to Hunk O Man's droning snore.

So I took the OTC generic sleeping pill. And I slept like a rock.


I tried to wake up Thursday morning. I dragged myself out of bed and got dressed. I brushed my teeth. I sat down and fell asleep in Hunk O Man's chair.

Dragging myself into the kitchen, I drank a cup of coffee. I walked into my bedroom and sat down on the bed. Uh-oh. Which turned into another 5-hour nap.

I got up. I stumbled around with my eyes half open. I drank Diet Coke. I puttered around. I tried to function. I walked into things. I tried to form complete sentences. I did pretty well for about 2 hours. I think I even fooled my family, except when it came to cooking dinner.

Then it was time for bed! So I got my crossword and settled in. I was asleep again by 11PM.

I woke up Friday morning refreshed, got up at 7AM, felt great, and got tons accomplished. I felt amazing! We got ready for the yard sale the girls hosted on Saturday, I went with B to the new Aldi store and Sam's Club and Harris Teeter. I bought fresh beets and hot dogs without nitrates.

When I got home, I checked the answering machine, and it was the newspaper lady, saying that she'd left a message with "sum-bahdy, sayin' yew wazzunt up yay-ette." The tone of disapproval in her voice made me cringe. I am going to kill whatever kid told her I was sleeping all day yesterday.

So the moral of this story is this: Be nice. And don't get stressed out.

(And if you do, take half a sleeping pill)

1 Comment:

Katy said...

oh my gosh....LOL...seriously...your posts are just soooo funny!!!
I used to blow up too...that was before I started taking my "crazy pills" too!!!
I think it is hilarious that you tackled your daughter for a hug!!!!! ROFL!!!
Wow...all that sleep....with how busy we have been lately...that sounds ABSOLUTELY wonderful!!!! (even though the newspaper lady disapproved....hehe!)