September 21, 2011

The Pressure is On

This week we're having the floors replaced in the kitchen, dining room, and living room. Leaving the carpet in the bedrooms and the linoleum in the bathrooms (for now).

On the first day of construction, I came home to bundles of furniture collected in the center of the living room and in the kitchen. Clearly, cooking was out of the question. We also noticed a thick film of dust collecting on every surface (probably the walls too). All we can think about now is how much cleaning we'll need to do this weekend once it's all done - it was kind of depressing and made me anxious. Not that I'm not willing, but I know how fast I get tired these days.

Otherwise I can't believe we lived with this nasty gray carpet in our condo for nine stinking years. So much for being frugal. I hate spending the money, but it's all part of the plan to make the condo more appealing once we're finally ready to sell it and buy a house (not planning on it helping the value since that's in the toilet anyway). At this point, that could be another couple years. But I digress.

On the second day of construction, I was determined to lay on the couch in front of the TV so I rearranged a couple pieces of furniture. I felt like I had triumphed over a small hurdle, but by the end of the evening I was coughing up dust. Ick.

Our collective frustration manifested itself in, of all things, an argument about painting the walls. DH is in love with pure, flat, white paint. The kind you see in art galleries. I can see why he's attracted to it, but it's anathema to a home as far as I'm concerned. To me, pure white (except the trim, doors, and ceiling) is cold and hard. Not soft and warm like I prefer. Is it worth arguing about? Probably not, especially in that moment. But it was too late. I was pissed off.

I sat in a chair later (in the dust-free bedroom), trying to figure out why I was so frustrated. I could see it was symptomatic of the pressure I'm feeling all around me. I'm still getting used to being pregnant, am suffering some digestive maladies because of it, typically wake up 6-7 times a night instead of sleeping soundly, and feel overwhelmed at the thought of planning for the arrival of the baby and all the complexities it will bring:
  • Will I keep working full time?
  • Do I have a choice?
  • How much is day care?
  • Do we need to dump half our furniture so we're not crowded *sses-to-elbows in that condo?
  • Can I afford to take 12 weeks off (6 unpaid)? Yeah, probably not but I want to so badly!
  • How am I gonna bond with our baby if I have to work full time?
  • Just how much water do I need to drink anyway?
  • Am I really going to have this baby or is something gonna go wrong?
  • We're so screwed...

Today's the third day of construction and we're not sure they'll be done before sometime tomorrow. But that's okay. I can live with dust (from the other room), and we can use it as an excuse to go out to dinner tonight. Protecting my sanity and marriage is more important anyway.

I was reminded yesterday, whether by the Spirit or nine months of counseling drilled into my head, that I need to make sure I take opportunities for self care. I'm woefully neglectful and lazy in that department - not sure why. So I'm signing up for chair massage at work once a month. Trying to prioritize exercise. Eating more vegetables and fruit. Saying no once in a while (though maybe not often enough).

I'd like to say that I'm procrastinating less but that would be a lie. I still can't make any decisions about the condo or the baby, and even though I'm on the docket to play guitar and sing background vocals with the worship band this Sunday I haven't picked up my guitar this week (barely touched it in the last month). What is wrong with me? I know I need to practice but, without the song list for this Sunday, I'm likely to wait until I see it before I bother so much as humming a tune.

And, if I'm honest, I have to admit I've been neglecting my relationship with Jesus which is the stupidest of all. My friendship with my Lord is my anchor in this world but I keep putting Him in a box instead of praying more and reading the Bible.

Just call me Procrastinitus Maximus!

September 9, 2011

Living in Tension

So we went on vacation this week. Opting for a reasonably priced, somewhat local option (we were thinking about Hawaii earlier this year, but it's just silly since I'm pregnant), we spent a week chilling out at my aunt & uncle's vacation home in the Utah mountains. I wouldn't say we did a lot - we did some stuff every day, but mostly relaxed which was the whole objective.

They say it takes three days for a person to actually relax on vacation. What would that look like? I use sleep as a gauge. In which case, relaxing apparently took a while - in fact, having arrived on Friday night it wasn't until the following Thursday night that I got a good night's sleep. The night before we headed home. Pretty sad, huh? But part of the reason is, that three-floor house in the forest surrounded by the black of night instead of the sounds of the city is downright creepy when it's just me and DH there. Otherwise we love it to pieces.

But anyway, on to the subject of the day: living in tension. I've said that I have decided to embrace hope, and that is true. As evidence I point to my generally non-stressed demeanor and acceptance of this pregnancy. I'm not freaking out about things anymore, though I kind of avoid learning much about raising a baby just yet. It's trickling in. Too overwhelming right now.

We finally decided to let the larger world in on our growing secret this week. Yeah, it took this long (I'm 17 weeks now). Letting the cat out of the bag feels like I'm enabling it to run away. Is that a weird analogy? And.. I still haven't told anyone at my work (save for the few who know me on more than a water cooler basis). And I still don't want to. Though they're probably about to start taking bets so I should.

I think there's something publicly embarrassing or just very awkward about people knowing about such an intense and private loss. Not like when a family member dies, but something.. I don't know what it is. Shame isn't the right word, I know.

Maybe it's because our society has no idea how to grieve publicly. We're taught to lick our wounds in our caves on evenings and weekends so we can be sparkly and productive on weekdays. But real life isn't like that. It kicks and screams and demands to be dealt with when it's inconvenient and messy and ugly. It relentlessly hounds us until we have nervous breakdowns or failed relationships, or until we pursue counseling or medications - or sometimes all of the above.

If this pregnancy doesn't work out, I don't know how I would return to work. I don't know that I would be mentally capable for some time. But why do such thoughts even cross my mind? Why am I still waiting for the other shoe to drop? Everything in my body is 100% clinically proven to be normal. Normal! The scans and the chromosomal blood tests prove it. So what the hell is my problem?

Oh wait... it's been a couple weeks since I cracked open that Battlefield of the Mind book. Guess it's time to do some more reading.

Sigh... God's work in my heart is never done.