So many things

My body feels tight, my back kind of hurts and I have a dull headache today.

I’m 99% sure it’s just…. “stress”. I hate saying that, because I can’t help but feel that sounds pathetic.

What on earth do I have to actually be stressed about?? Wrapping Asher’s birthday presents? Not having time to go Christmas shopping? Trying to fit in too many regular life tasks in around my well-paid, work from home job that I enjoy? Complaining because I have an appointment this afternoon- never mind the fact that I have good health insurance, a vehicle to get there, and a flexible job that allows me to even attend a 2:40 p.m. appointment?

Yet, I do feel stressed. I do need to deal with Asher’s birthday. I do “need” to find some time to get some Christmas shopping done, and I do have a work holiday party this weekend and Ethan’s basketball game to attend and we also need some groceries before packing Asher up and sending him off Friday afternoon for a weekend long team swim meet outing. I also have a lot of work to do, some returns that need to be shipped, and the truth is, I wish I didn’t have a 2:40 appointment today.

And I still have the dull headache.

I also spent from 6:30 p.m – 9:30 p.m. on a Zoom meeting with my co-volunteer coordinator last night organizing stuff for the big home swim meet in 2 weeks. By the time we hung up (seriously, we worked for 3 hours straight without a single break), my eyes were crossing from staring at the little dates and times on the computer screen sign up as I adjusted each entry, one by one, trying to estimate what time the Admissions Table volunteers should arrive compared to the Timers, and how late will the Concessions stand stay open on Saturday evening??

Anyway. I do have a lot in my head right now, and on my plate. Or at least it feels like that. And yes, it’s all relative, and in the grand scheme of things, I have zero actual problems. I realize this. But perceived stress is still stress, and my body still feels it and experiences it the same way.

I am grateful that these are the extent of my “problems”, though. I will happily take these on over many of the much, much worse things that are out there.

I think I need to do some kind of stretching video or something today. Maybe a lights out/ Christmas lights on type of thing. That sounds nice.

Okay, back to work….

Daily Gratitude:

I am grateful for twinkle lights.

13 thoughts on “So many things”

  1. I wish you didn’t have this volunteer gig… it’s a lot to take on and it’s unfortunate that the meet falls during such a busy month of the year! I hope you can give up the volunteer gig next year!!

    I’m trying to only look at things a week at a time right now so as not to get too overwhelmed. I thought I was done traveling for the year but need to go to Chicago for work for 2 days next week which isn’t ideal but oh well! I keep focusing on how much I will relax when we are in Mexico! I’m done with my Christmas shopping which helps but we buy so few presents that it’s not a big undertaking! The boys’ big present arrives today and I guess you have to take the couch out of the packaging right away or it’s not covered by warranty… So they will get their big gift extra early. But it would have been impossible to time it perfectly and I was worried it might sell out as these fort building couches have been in high demand the last several years!


    1. I know, I shouldn’t have accepted to keep doing it. There is part of me though that really does like being involved/ helping out. And there are big stretches of time when I don’t have to do anything for it- in fact, I haven’t done much at all since the last meet in October. But it comes in big spurts and then the work is very intense and also time sensitive. And just stressful, because dealing with all those people, and it’s kind of high stakes if it doesn’t go well, it would reflect on our whole team! And me… ha.

      So happy for you to be done with shopping! I’m definitely not, but I have gotten a decent start.


  2. I hate it when stress starts impacting my physical self! Don’t forget to take some time for yourself – 20 minute in the hot tub, a few extra minutes in the bathroom to just sit there and do nothing, or stopping at Starbucks for a nice treat on the way to the afternoon appointment can go a long way!


    1. Yes, I tend to sometimes not really “believe” that physical ailments are actually tied to stress- I’ll tell myself it’s just a coincidence that I have a headache, or something like that. But it is true. As I get older I notice a lot of tension that builds like in my back and shoulders too. I really should be doing more stretching of some sort.


  3. If I remember from last year’s holiday season you mentioned wanting more time off to do some of the Christmas stuff bc when you had more “on” nursing time, you’d get long stretches of week days off and it was helpful. Perhaps time to schedule a day or two of PTO over the next couple weeks to knock some things out? Sounds like a great way to spend time.


    1. Ironic that you mention this, because after I posted that yesterday, I was sitting here thinking, “How did I always used to do all this stuff?” And then I remembered that, yes- for years and years during my inpatient nursing days I always had a TEN DAY stretch off in early December, around Asher’s birthday. Back then two 12 hour shifts off on a Thurs/Fri + my rotating weekend schedule off would end up with 10 glorious days off. That was seriously a game changer. I really do need to save a few vacation days to schedule at least a long weekend in December. I just always like to save as many for travel as possible, so I’m hesitant to do that. But it would make a big difference.


  4. I needed this post tonight, Kaelyn!

    Between my husband being away overseas 50% of the time lately, my parents moving nearby (wonderful, but also time-consuming and exhausting the last few days), company (my father-in-law visiting last week), and all the normal rigors of work and life PLUS the fact that this holiday season is going to look a lot busier than it did during the “height” of the pandemic, I feel absolutely exhausted and ache ALL OVER. I have a dry cough I haven’t been able to shake since I had COVID in October which has been impacting my sleep, and when my husband was home last week his sleep was off because of jet lag so he accidentally woke me up a few times. I’m also finishing up NaBloPoMo which was a lot of fun, but also a lot of reading/writing/time.
    I can’t tell if it’s being overtired or maybe I’m getting sick (everyone seems to be sick)…but tonight I feel it all hit me like a ton of bricks. I’m absolutely tuckered.

    I feel too tired to enjoy anything relaxing. Sleep is what I need (I woke up at 3:15 last night…coughing…and never got back to sleep), but my kids are at an activity until late this evening (and my husband is away again so I’m on pickup duty).

    Nothing is bad or wrong, but it is still tiring/stressful (and to me “perceived”stress is still just…stress!).

    You have so much on your plate and you operate at a high level. You stay on top of fitness, you kids have so many great activities (sports, live performances), you want to arrange great trips. But I think eventually – especially around the holidays – it always starts to feel like a bit too much; for me at least!

    I really hope you get a chance to breath and don’t have any more 3-hour calls about swim team!!!

    PS. Your house always looks so festive. Twinkle lights forever!!


    1. Thank you for this lovely comment! This felt like a big virtual hug. 🙂 I can hear the frustration in your tone too, with everything you have going on as well. (A LOT!) I also wish for you to be able to catch a break and get some SLEEP- ugh, that on top of everything is the absolute worst. Knock on wood, but at least I’ve been sleeping well the last couple weeks. I had a stretch of some insomnia earlier in the month, but it has been better lately.


  5. sorry to hear that you feel overwhelmed. it could be triggered by physical discomfort. when I don’t feel well, everything else just becomes more annoying. get some rest and tackle the to-do list once you feel rested. Hopefully, they become less stressful.


    1. Yes, it always all works out. I think sometimes having a lot going on early in the week (like I had an evening volunteer committee meeting both Monday night and Tuesday night) makes things feel overwhelming. Like, oh man, it’s only Tuesday and I’m already exhausted and still have 3 days to go and work and…. haha. But I feel better already today- and I should have some time this weekend to get some stuff caught up I think.


  6. Problems are still problems! Even when we have privilege and comfort, we can still experience problems – so although you say they are not “actual” problems, they still cause stress and exhaustion. It’s okay to extend yourself some grace. That is a lot going on! I hope you can get some rest and that your headache subsides.


    1. Thank you! Yes, as much as I try to focus on gratitude and positivity, the reality is sometimes things still feel like a lot! I do struggle with feeling like I “shouldn’t” complain, because I do have so much comfort and goodness in my life, but I know that we all still have our “problems” in our own way. Doesn’t mean they are all equal, but still, they are still experienced in our day to day life and they do affect us.


  7. Stress is real and event though in the grand scheme of things, the stressors in your life don’t seem to be so bad, they can still “build up” in your body… be kind to yourself.


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