Am I overthinking this?

The bad thing about working full time is you’re so busy you don’t have time to think about your life. The good thing about working full time is you’re so busy you don’t have time to think about your life. Did you have to look at that again to make sure you read it right?

When you’re working a full time job, your days can stretch into years and years of monotonous, meaningless duties that wear you out physically and emotionally, and leave little time for the things that really matter to you. Maybe you don’t even really know what matters because you don’t have time to discover it. When you’re not at work, you are doing chores or fulfilling other obligations, and any spare moment after that is spent with family or friends. So when are you supposed to think, to dream, to discover who you are, what you are meant to do, and how you want your life to be without interruption or distraction? Who would take what precious little time they have with their spouses, kids, friends or family to do this? No one I know. So we continue on every day, doing first what we have to do, next what we should do, after that, if we are lucky, a little bit of we want to do, and any time left over (for most of us that is none) what we dream to do.

In the last two weeks that I have been home again, jobless, I have already gone from happy, excited, hopeful and ambitious, to guilty, dejected, depressed and overwhelmed. I can’t make an important decision to save my life, let alone a simple one. I’ve changed the title and subject of this post three times already. Could it be because I went from being too busy to pee regularly to having the floor knocked out from under my feet in a day? I went from having every second of my day so full that eating sometimes became last priority to sitting at home, trying to fill my minutes with productive tasks so I won’t feel so damn guilty when my husband asks me what I’ve been doing all day.

For most people, myself included, an opportunity like this is a blessing. Getting to stay home with my little guy, be the wife and mother I want to be, take up clipping coupons and playdates, catch up on cleaning the house. I’m even lucky enough to have two grandmothers nearby who can’t go more than a few days without babysitting Jack, so I even get a couple days to myself to do whatever I want. But instead of feeling blessed about this, I start thinking too much. I overthink everything. And overworry, and overanalyze. I become brooding and depressed. I obsess over my money situation, how I am going to get a job, how little I am exercising, etc. I second guess everything.

I don’t know if I am the only one that does this. Maybe anyone would do the same in my situation. I’ve been through some serious life-changing events in a very short period of time – getting a job, losing a job, changing jobs, having a baby and losing loved ones. Maybe internally I am trying to cope with all of this while externally trying to function as a successful and productive member of society, and I am underestimating how difficult that is.

I’m stuck in the middle of two theories – one is that there is a plan for my life and I should put all my anxieties into God’s hands and let things unfold, trusting that things will work out. The other theory is that life is what I make of it, and nothing good will happen and nothing will change if I don’t take action and do something drastic, take risks, make it happen. The first theory is much more attractive to me as a life approach, but I’m not confident enough to believe in it 100%.

My brain hurts. Today has been a difficult day for me mentally. Hopefully tomorrow I will be able to turn off my brain for a while and just enjoy the beautiful October weather with my son. Even writing this post has been a difficult and draining task.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Linda Paul
    Oct 23, 2010 @ 08:22:58

    Well, personally, I'm glad you could express a hard day so beautifully. Not many of us can do that. I can relate to what you say about when we're working vs when we're not working. Every day, since I retired, I wonder what in the …. I accomplished this day? I'm definately not living the retired life I thought I would. When I ask myself why? Several answers pop up. But the reality is, I'm living with my own choices…good or bad. I tell myself they're just "different" from what I expected.Regarding your theories: I think there's a certain merit in both. I do believe that we have the ability to control how we react to what life hands us. I do not believe that we can control or steer our lives in a better direction simply by taking risks. Some people do this with great results (Bill Gates, Jack Simplot) but many others end up on skid row after risking too much. But I do remind myself that there are so many people born into really awful circumstances who rise above it all simply by elevating their psyches above the daily crap…(Ann Frank, Nelson Mandella). So, I'm always doing that damned Pollyanna thing…reminding myself that I AM a good person. And YOU are too! Keep writing!

    Reply

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