Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Ups and Downs


Some days, I have the energy of a two-year old and a smile to match. Other days, I can barely make it out of bed, wear a frown all day, and want to withdraw inside myself for hours on end. Lately, I never know what kind of day I'll have until I wake up in the morning.

Even when a divorce is official on paper, it's not officially over in your heart - or in your life - for quite some time. I get daily emails from a Divorce Support Group and the subject line for the message today said, "Expecting Too Much Progress Too Quickly?" Sometimes I think my progess meter is just about right. But other times, I think my brain is telling me, Hey, the papers are signed. You should be happy now. Full of energy and life. It's a new beginning!

There are some days that I feel that way. More often than not, it's a curious mixture of sadness, grief, and acceptance. But what I really didn't bargain for was just how much of a physical toll this would take on me. The other day, I went to exercise at my gym and I could barely make it through my 30 minutes. I was about to fall asleep! I don't know that I've ever experienced that in my life and since I haven't felt that way since, I can only attribute it to the emotional turmoil of the past few months finally catching up with me.

I think we forget just how much our physical and emotional states are inextricably linked. So when major drama happens due to the divorce (and yes, it's still happening, unfortunately), sometimes the physical exhaustion doesn't hit me until a few weeks later.

It's been a rather rough cycle to deal with, but I just have to cling to my mantra
of "One day at a time." Oh. And I always, always have chocolate on hand. :-)

12 comments:

  1. Melissa, when I first glanced at that picture I thought the kitten was dead. Okay, no, it's just dead tired. *phew*.

    I'm sorry you're going through the ups-and-downs. Believe me, I've been there, and it's very taxing. You will get through it given time. Believe me, I've been there and now I'm here. My only advice: really force yourself to exercise. The pay off is huge, but it does take time. Those endorphines (sp?) will kick in--all natural happy pill.

    My thoughts and prayers. I love the new profile picture.

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  2. I'm sorry to hear you're going through this. Maybe change up the exercise? Instead of a vigorous workout at the gym, maybe long walks with your daughter? A more mellow routine, with talk and nature at hand to bring about an ease.

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  3. I know I tend to over-analyze stuff, especially when it's traumatic - and that can drag me down further physically and emotionally. Easier said than done, but try to keep focused on your edits, and your daughter, and those efforts will help your days pass, one at a time.

    Thinking of you!

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  4. It seems as if you have the right attitude about this transition. It IS hard and you're not always going to feel like Susie-Sunshine. However, the picture of that adorable kitten would cheer anyone up for a few minutes! Take care of yourself.

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  5. Elizabeth Parker10:21 AM

    I'm sorry you're going through this, Melissa, but I think you have the right attitude with "One day at a time." During times of stress, sometimes it's even "One hour at a time." Or even "one minute at a time"!

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  6. You mean its not a dead kitten? Darn!

    Its going to take awhile. Any life changing event takes awhile. Heck, I'm finally able to talk about my remodel without bursting into tears. So expect to have some down days. Keep up the workouts, even if you only get a few minutes done. Eventually you will feel better and the workouts will help.

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  7. Oh, Rene, I can always count on you to make me laugh. ;-)

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  8. Big hugs, Melissa. And yes, you're right, we often forget how much of a physical toll emotional upset can take. You're going through a form of the grieving process with many of the same stages, so I'm not surprised you're suffering physically as well.

    As you said, one day at a time and lots of chocolate!!

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  9. Emotional stress wears on our physical big time. I have days I don't want to get out of bed either cause I can't stand another day of getting by unemployed and wondering when my life will improve.
    We can only trust that God has a bigger better plan for us and that it is happening and we just have to show up and be ready.
    Go easy on yourself on those down days. You are making it one day at a time.

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  10. SLEEP, SLEEP, SLEEP girl. Let your body talk... and then you'll bounce back easier. I've learned that over lots and lots of times when my body is mourning a miscarriage and my brain is telling me everything is fine.

    We all love you and sending our prayers. Hang in there. Jenni

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  11. When my mom passed away, I remember being surprised by how physically taxing grief is Getting through a work day was grueling. I was buffeted by emotional storms at the most unexpected times, and it went on for a LOT longer than I thought it would. Still happens, occasionally.

    Take care of yourself, rely on your support network (very wise of you to join one!), and trust to time. It'll get better.

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  12. Hey, Melissa.

    You're right about the link between the physical and the emotional. I will go through hard times in my life, for perhaps a couple of years, and then I'll look in the mirror in a lucid moment and realize that I have physically aged almost a decade. But the good news is that the physical symptoms of stress can be reversed with some "calm" time.

    After my divorce I was devastated, and the first couple of years were emotionally tumultuous. But it will get better for you. And the stress and its physical manifestation will be but a memory.

    (:

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