Why did I do this?!

I’ve always loved the early morning hours when all was calm and quiet in my home. It has always been the best time to relax, sip my coffee, open up my laptop and write without any fear of disruption or questioning by anyone else who lives here.

I gave my mornings up, for the most part.

Tired of constantly being hounded about getting a “regular job,” yet again, despite knowing that “regular jobs” never work out because my anxiety levels hit the roof and I inevitably end up unable to handle the pressure, the worries, the thoughts, being out of touch with my kids and feeling inaccessible in case of emergency. The last “regular job” I had, I cried every day on the way there, on the way home, and even while sitting at my desk.

So despite knowing this, I gave in to the constant hounding from K, and, with the help of my daughter (because she works there and everyone loves her), was offered and accepted an overnight job at a grocery store. Overnight because, in my mind, there would be way fewer people to have to deal with, and because at night I know everyone I care about is safely tucked into bed at home so there is less to worry about (beyond the basics, like the house catching fire or someone falling down these odd old spiral stairs that would never pass today’s building codes).

It’s been about a month and I feel like I’m dying inside. I miss my mornings, since now I drag my ass into the house at 7:40 in the morning with my head pounding, every muscle in my body aching, wanting desperately to just go to sleep. Most mornings I can’t just lay down and fall asleep because I’m still over-stimulated from work. By the time my brain and body agree to let me sleep I’m lucky to manage a two-hour nap before I need to be up to drive one or both the girls to work. Both my daughters, still not licensed drivers and even if they were, wouldn’t have cars… ) work retail shift jobs that vary daily.

At that point, I go ahead and do any errands or shopping that would normally need to be done, followed by some housework, and before I know it it’s almost time for dinner. Often I need to run out again to pick up/drop off one or the other of the girls, make dinner, and then try to settle myself for another “nap,” before having to get ready to go to work at 10:45. More evenings than I would like, one of the girls’ shift ends at an inopportune 7, 8 or 9 pm — meaning trying to get two short naps in as opposed to a solid block of healthful sleep.

I’m so tired at this point that I want to just lie down and die. Adding to the fun, my carpal tunnel is flaring to the point of constant pain, tingling and dead-handedness. Lack of sufficient quality sleep is no friend to me and my anxiety or emotional health. I don’t know what the heck I was thinking.

Oh, right. I was thinking maybe K would shut up and stop nagging me. Nope. That didn’t happen.

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