Feeling Hopeful

The things that I’m writing about here are hard for me to “put out there” because I’m being very transparent and vulnerable.  I hope that you will have grace for me as you read.  One of the biggest things is that I want people to see that an every day person can have a battle that you know nothing about.  And for you to not feel alone if this is your battle.

I have spent the past several years battling something that I have finally made the decision to stop.  That battle is with alcohol.  It started out as a coping mechanism.  I have stopped many times, only to think I can handle a little here, a little there.  And it always turns into much more than that.  The recent plan was to not drink at home… only drink when I’m at a restaurant or at my parents’ house.  These past few weeks while I was at my parents I drank sooooo much.  I’m embarrassed by it to be honest.  It has gotten to the point in which my brain is just foggy all of the time, and I’m exhausted.

We’ll see how long this lasts, but since I’ve decided to quit I have had ZERO cravings for it.  I’m sure the day will come in which I want it, but for now, I’m happy without it.  A couple things I’ve learned… I can’t ever start back up again.  I can’t ever have one at a restaurant.  I am done.  If I start again, it will blow up into what it has been.  I’m okay with this.  Also, I feel so clear headed now!  Who knew that the alcohol was causing me to feel so terrible all the time.  I’m hoping that my sleep issues will correct themselves with this decision.

More than anything, I feel so hopeful.  I know that not drinking will help my medication work 100% so any issues that I have had will be better.  I feel hopeful for my sleep.  I’m feeling hopeful for my family.  I am feeling hopeful for my future.  I’m feeling hopeful for my relationship with Christ because this has been standing in between us.  All of that passion that I have wanted has been lacking because of the idol that I had.  I have been drinking at a sinful level.  It caused a wedge in our relationship.

Another decision that I have made it to finally bite the bullet and go back to doing Trim Healthy Mama.  I want to be healthy again and just saying “I will eat healthy” doesn’t work for me.  I need guidelines.  I have been so anti-diet, but I’m learning that diets are what some people need.  I’m not really even looking to lose weight, but this is self care for me.  I want to feel good.  I hope to start hiking regularly again soon.

The plan for the beginning of July is to get up in the morning, have time with Jesus, then take the kids for a hike before it gets too hot.  Then I’ll get myself ready and let the kids play with friends.  After lunch, we will do school.  Then they can play with friends again.  Somewhere in that I’ll still try to keep up with laundry and the house.  I just feel so much better when I do.

I’m at such peace right now.  I am just praying for God to fill in the gaps where I fail, give me grace, help me to not have cravings and the way out when I do.  Good things are coming!

If it’s Not One Thing it’s Another

I’ve been kind of down lately…

I thought I had found “the answer” to my insomnia.  And in some ways I did.  I sleep great!  I wake up some, but I’m always able to go back to sleep.  The only problem is… I’m so tired in the morning that I have a really hard time getting out of bed.  This medicine knocks me flat!  I’m going to have to start setting an early alarm just to get out of bed at a decent time (after hitting snooze a bunch of course).  I hate that!  I thought with homeschooling and summer I wouldn’t need an alarm.  My fear is that I will just turn it off and roll back over.  So with this, I’ve been down.

I also haven’t had much desire to keep my house clean and be in a routine.  I believe it’s because of feeling knocked out by my meds.  Sleep is such a huge part of mental health and I feel like if it’s not one thing it’s another.

On a positive note…

My doctor wrote a really convincing letter for disability about my mental health condition.  He has made it very clear that I cannot work, and I have struggled to work since I was 21 (true!).  My official diagnoses are bipolar 2, generalized anxiety disorder, and chronic insomnia.  I knew that I had bipolar 2 and anxiety, but I didn’t realize what my actual diagnoses were.  It helped me to feel justified in applying for disability and that I really have actual illnesses that are debilitating.

Homeschooling…

We have taken part of May and all of June off so far from homeschooling.  I’ve tried to implement a “read for 20 minutes” time every day and it has not gone well.  Ethan fights it with everything he has, every single day.  And the complaint I get from him is that the books are all too hard.  I’m at a loss.  So because of this, I decided to start school back up in July.  We need to get him reading and he needs reading instruction.    I’ve just decided to start over on level 2 and do the lessons again.  I think that will be sufficient.  Plus, we didn’t finish our curriculum so we can maybe get caught up if we start early.  We will only do reading, math, and some writing.  It’ll just be about 45 minutes-an hour of school each day.  I’ll also read aloud to them each day.  We started Boxcar Children book 1 and didn’t get that far into it!  Looking forward to reading them more books in that series.

At the moment I’m learning to just take things one day at a time.  I’m hoping that things start working themselves out and I am sleeping well without feeling worn, Ethan starts doing better with reading, and I get disability.  In the mean time, I try to enjoy being with my family.  Every single day is precious.

Passion

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I am sitting on the back porch at my parents’ listening to the birds sing.  Karis and Ethan are at camp, and Levi is doing a puzzle with his Granny.  I’m honestly kind of bored, so I thought I would write.

It’s been a while since I’ve written on here.  I feel like anything I have to say it just bland right now.  My passion is missing.  I’m not sure where it went, but I guess it’s because I’ve just been surviving lately.

Life is good.  My bipolar is under control.  My anxiety is much better than it once was.  But I’ve been struggling with sleep.  I was waking up at like 1:00am and not going back to sleep for hours.  So I finally told my doctor that something needed to change in that department.

He’s so good and listened to me.  He’s been avoiding sleep medicine because he didn’t want me on one more medication.  I desperately needed to sleep for my mental health, though, so he gave in.  Boy am I glad he did!  Last night I slept from 10:30-7:00.  I haven’t done that in a long, long time.  I can’t say that I didn’t wake up because I did.  But the fact that I just rolled over and went right back to sleep is huge!  I was waking up wide awake and couldn’t go back to sleep.  I feel like a new person!  No more afternoon naps.  I’m waking up early so I’m not missing out on the kids’ day (I was eventually going back to sleep after hours, only to wake up at like 9:00).  I feel like a new person!

Now.  My goal is to get back into the Word.  I can tell that my relationship with Christ is suffering because I’m not reading His Word.  I started back into it yesterday.  It’s so refreshing!

I desire to have that passion for Christ that I once had!  I feel that it’s desperately missing.  I have been in a valley and hopefully I’m on my way up!  I trust that He has been in control this entire time.  Nothing has been surprising for Him.  He loves me just the way I am, right here, right now.  I trust that He isn’t mad but just wants to spend time with me because He loves me.

So, as I have been getting up at a decent hour, my hope is that it will greatly benefit my relationship with Christ as well as my relationship with my kiddos.  It will definitely help when we start homeschooling again!

God is good, all the time.