March 28, 2014 by Courtney
This morning, I stumbled out of bed around 5:45, helped get the kids ready to go to school, then sat down to work on my Bible study and Celebrate Recovery homework. I’ve had a few days in which I struggled to get going in the mornings, so I decided that I had to “act my way into thinking” instead of “thinking my way into acting” this morning. You see, this is what I have to do much of the time because otherwise, I would just stay in bed all day some days.
I have been working through this week’s lesson in CR about insanity (doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a different result each time) and sanity (wholeness of mind; making decisions based on truth).
After I finished up my lesson, I went out for my morning run (which was another thing that I had to “act my way into thinking” because I didn’t want to), and through my run God began to make some things very clear to me.
I have spent my life not understanding myself… I desired balance and a life without anxiety and depression, yet it felt so far out of reach.
On my “high” days, I would clean the whole house, organize, get caught up on laundry, bake 15 things, prep meals for the week, play with the kids, do crafts, etc… all in one day. On these days, I felt like I was “better” and that I could handle anything. This meant that on my “low” days when I couldn’t keep up, I self-condemned, which made my low even lower.
This was my pattern of insanity- I would do things the same way over, and over, and over again, expecting a different outcome.
Through my recent diagnosis, I’m beginning to understand myself better. I’m beginning to understand that there was a chemical imbalance making this imbalance so difficult. And now that I am understanding myself better, I’m beginning to learn that the only way to sanity (wholeness of mind; making decisions based on truth) will be to break this cycle of imbalance.
What does sanity look like in my life? Well, it means having the same expectations on my high days that I do on my low days. It means being more realistic in life and understanding what I can and can’t do/achieve/accomplish. It means giving myself grace when I fail instead of self-condemnation. It means remembering that there are seasons in life, and to take one day at a time. Sanity for me means being balanced.
It means that whatever I plan on my high days needs to be something that I can follow through with on any other day.
It means taking my expectation and searching God’s word for truth, and living out His truth each day.
It’s going to take some conscious effort on my part, but I think I may be able to break this cycle. One day at a time :-).
This also means that each thing I post will come from the eyes of balance/real life vs. the ideal. Ideal is pretty, but it isn’t realistic.
I wrote a blog post the other day about my grocery budget. That day, I believed in every word that I wrote. I was having a really good day and felt that I had been/could continue to follow what I wrote about. A few days later, I had a very low day and this whole week I have not done a very good job with sticking with my ideal (the grocery budget nor my desire to not eat out). This was just one more thing to be self-condemning about. I felt like I was being a hypocrite and I was just frustrated with myself for not following my ideal. You know what I’m learning? I need to stop assuming the ideal will ever happen. Because it rarely does. Then I walk around with the weight of the world on my shoulders because I can’t make the ideal happen on my good days or my bad.
My desire with my new blog will be to post things that are real- not ideal, but realistic. I don’t ever want someone to read my blog and think “how does she possibly do that?” but to think “this is realistic and I can do this.” I don’t want to be like other blogs that mamas can’t relate to or live up to… I want to be able to live up to my own words, and if I can’t, then it’s not real. It’s easy to write about the ideal on good days, but if I can’t live up to it on a normal day, then it’s not real.
This is just one step towards sanity, and I hope you’ll join me on this journey. God has big plans, and I believe that He can and will restore me.
Spring represents new life and I believe that God has a new life for me after all of this struggle. That doesn’t mean that every day will be perfect; that just means every day will be real. I won’t live in the insanity of doing things the same way expecting a different result, but I will live in wholeness of mind, making decisions based on truth.