May Resolutions Review

Hey B.

Let’s see… a little check up on my resolutions and how they’re going… ?

 

Week One Jan 3-9 : No more sodas. (I feel like this is super reasonable. I love tea and everything else just as much if not more.)

HAH. I think I succeeded on this one, but it didn’t last long. *sips her Dr. Pepper*  Maybe I should get back to work on this one.

 

Week Two Jan 10-16: No more candy. (This will be so difficult at work.)

You know, this one stuck. I don’t eat candy, really. I am chewing gum lately to trick my brain when I get anxiety, but that’s about it.

 

Week Three Jan 17-23: 6 of 7 days, cut out fast food. (This includes breakfast. Oh, that will be so difficult. I am going to practice Week One and Two.)

HAHAHAHAHAHA…. I really need to fix this. I mean, to be fair, since I bought my lunchbox, I have been having mainly sandwiches and water. But, for breakfast, ugh. I still swing by Chikfila and throw away my money. Not only is it not good for me, but it kills my bank account. (More on Finances later.)

 

Week Four Jane 24-30: Pescetarian again. (Only Fish and Poultry for the meats.)

For the most part, I have done this, though I admit to having Black Forest Ham on my sandwiches. RIP.

 

 

 

New goals for this month? Let’s see.

For the first time, ever, Matthew and I are trying Envelopes as a way to manage money. It’s been pretty great so far because we physically see the money we have and don’t have before we make financial decisions. This is only week one, but it’s already made me that much more conscious, so I’m hoping this one sticks.

gave up gaming, though this wasn’t a goal of mine. It’s a cycle, I know. I play the games for a bit and then I get off them and back to the world for a bit. This is also not out of any ‘games are bad, mmkay’ rant at all. I love games. Just like I love movies and books. Granted, the ones I play have stories that keep me interested as opposed to shooters and stuff, but oh well. It’s worked out, though. I’ve been watching movies again, tv shows I enjoy, and reading. When doing the hobby of roleplaying, I never feel like I have time to do those things, so it’s nice. It was most horrible when I lead the guild. I felt I had to live and breathe the guild, work, sleep, repeat. Thankfully, I had enough sense to still spend time with Matthew and Elijah outside of it, so nothing was truly damaged as far as my life goes. I am proud I had a handle on that and felt I was responsible. Emotionally, eventually, it took a toll but that’s neither here nor there related to time. In any case, I’m writing now. So that’s cool. 

I have been going to bed around 8-10pm more often than not during the week and in turn, been getting up earlier and feeling more energetic and just at peace. While at first, I panicked thinking OH NO MIRANDA, YOU ARE NOT BEING PRODUCTIVE WITH YOUR ONLY ‘YOU TIME’, but I was. I was choosing health. I was choosing to be well rested so I could effectively kick ass at work and stuff. I was choosing to shower in the morning before work and wake myself up proper. I was choosing to stick to a schedule. It’s fan-fucking-tastic.

In addition, I want to continue my discovery of faith. I swear, every month that goes by has felt so good. I have never felt so peaceful and healthy. I have stopped feeling like I’m a royal fuck up that’s going to die and end up in the wrong place because I didn’t dot my i’s and cross my t’s. I don’t feel like by doing things I have always done, that I am being ‘wrong’ or ‘sinning’ or not ‘good enough’. I just… Ahh. It’s so nice. I don’t like to shit on things in order to make myself feel better. (Don’t get me wrong. I’m imperfect. I still do it. But I am trying not to.) So any Christians reading this, I speak purely and truly to my own experience and life – and nothing of you and your particular stories. I hope they are wonderful, and they are what you need and breathe. You do you, boo. I’m doin’ me.

The last but not least thing is, I am evaluating my relationships. In that mean, I have a lot of codependency issues I am clearing up with myself, and they have with or without my knowledge affected my friendships in some way, be it minor or major. I don’t know who will stick around afterward, who will come closer, or who will have no clue what I am talking about. I am learning about boundaries, and limits, and self-help, and not putting up with shit I don’t care about. At this point, if people who have seen me in my best, in my worst, and in my struggles of sweet ecstasy don’t want to be around … Fare thee well, Felicia. 🙂  

Relationships go two ways. For me, things that are the most important are Communication. Honesty. Forgiveness. If you can’t meet me on at least two of these, then we’re gonna have a bad time.

 

 

Anyhow. That’s me.

-M

Here, have some music.

Dear Catie, I took the test again, and I got INFP! *gasps*

Untitled(click to enlarge)
PERSONALITY: INFP
VARIANT: TURBULENT
ROLE: DIPLOMAT
(Readers, this is from this site.)

“You are one of the Diplomats – an empathic and idealistic individual who enjoys exploring interesting ideas and prizes morality. You are known for your poetic nature, intuitive skills and pure, childlike enthusiasm. Above you will find a brief overview of your personality traits – proceed to the type overview to learn much more about your personality type. Prepare to be impressed.”

You know me, Catie. Always looking to know, and always changing. I took the test again because it’s a new year, and I was curious if I’d changed much at all. I answered as truthfully as possible with absolutely no ‘neutral’ answers. You can read all of the things, if you want, at this site but I will highlight some on this post that I found interesting. Really, only one letter changed, but it’s a difference! (Also, can I just say, I LOVE the ‘flower child’ icon? Hahaha.)

When deciding how to move forward, they will look to honor, beauty, morality and virtue – INFPs are led by the purity of their intent, not rewards and punishments. People who share the INFP personality type are proud of this quality, and rightly so, but not everyone understands the drive behind these feelings, and it can lead to isolation.

Also, one of your favorite quotes is on the page, too.

All that is gold does not glitter; not all those who wander are lost; the old that is strong does not wither; deep roots are not reached by the frost.

J. R. R. Tolkien
 
Also, um, hello yes this is me:
INFPs have a talent for self-expression, revealing their beauty and their secrets through metaphors and fictional characters.
INFPs often drift into deep thought, enjoying contemplating the hypothetical and the philosophical more than any other personality type. Left unchecked, INFPs may start to lose touch, withdrawing into “hermit mode”, and it can take a great deal of energy from their friends or partner to bring them back to the real world.
 
Strengths:
  • Idealistic – INFPs’ friends and loved ones will come to admire and depend on them for their optimism. Their unshaken belief that all people are inherently good, perhaps simply misunderstood, lends itself to an incredibly resilient attitude in the face of hardship.
  • Seek and Value Harmony – People with the INFP personality type have no interest in having power over others, and don’t much care for domineering attitudes at all. They prefer a more democratic approach, and work hard to ensure that every voice and perspective is heard.
  • Open-Minded and Flexible – A live-and-let-live attitude comes naturally to INFPs, and they dislike being constrained by rules. INFPs give the benefit of the doubt too, and so long as their principles and ideas are not being challenged, they’ll support others’ right to do what they think is right.
  • Very Creative – INFPs combine their intuitive nature with their open-mindedness to allow them to see things from unconventional perspectives. Being able to connect many far-flung dots into a single theme, it’s no wonder that many INFPs are celebrated poets and authors.
  • Passionate and Energetic – When something captures INFPs’ imagination and speaks to their beliefs, they go all in, dedicating their time, energy, thoughts and emotions to the project. Their shyness keeps them from the podium, but they are the first to lend a helping hand where it’s needed.
  • Dedicated and Hard-Working – While others focusing on the challenges of the moment may give up when the going gets tough, INFPs (especially Assertive ones) have the benefit of their far-reaching vision to help them through. Knowing that what they are doing is meaningful gives people with this personality type a sense of purpose and even courage when it comes to accomplishing something they believe in.
Weaknesses:
  • Too Idealistic – INFPs often take their idealism too far, setting themselves up for disappointment as, again and again, evil things happen in the world. This is true on a personal level too, as INFPs may not just idealize their partners, but idolize them, forgetting that no one is perfect.
  • Too Altruistic – INFPs sometimes see themselves as selfish, but only because they want to give so much more than they are able to. This becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy, as they try to push themselves to commit to a chosen cause or person, forgetting to take care of the needs of others in their lives, and especially themselves.
  • Impractical – When something captures INFPs’ imagination, they can neglect practical matters like day-to-day maintenance and simple pleasures. Sometimes people with the INFP personality type will take this asceticism so far as to neglect eating and drinking as they pursue their passion or cause.
  • Dislike Dealing With Data – INFPs are often so focused on the big picture that they forget the forest is made of individual trees. INFPs are in tune with emotions and morality, and when the facts and data contradict their ideals, it can be a real challenge for them.
  • Take Things Personally – INFPs often take challenges and criticisms personally, rather than as inspiration to reassess their positions. Avoiding conflict as much as possible, INFPs will put a great deal of time and energy into trying to align their principles and the criticisms into a middle ground that satisfies everybody.
  • Difficult to Get to Know – INFPs are private, reserved and self-conscious. This makes them notoriously difficult to really get to know, and their need for these qualities contributes to the guilt they often feel for not giving more of themselves to those they care about.
Famous INFPs:

William Shakespeare
J.R.R. Tolkien
Björk
Johnny Depp
Julia Roberts
Lisa Kudrow
Tom Hiddleston
Homer
Virgil

Fictional INFPs:

“Frodo Baggins” from The Lord of the Rings
“Anne of Green Gables”
“Fox Mulder” from X-Files
“Deanna Troi” from Star Trek
“Wesley Crusher” from Star Trek
I gotta go for now, but I will post more of what I learn later!
Love you,
Miranda
 P.S. This is me so much right now:
But INFPs aren’t necessarily in a rush to commit – they are, after all, Prospecting (P) types, and are almost always looking to either establish a new relationship or improve an existing one – they need to be sure they’ve found someone compatible. In dating, INFPs will often start with a flurry of comparisons, exploring all the ways the current flame matches with the ideal they’ve imagined. This progression can be a challenge for a new partner, as not everyone is able to keep up with INFPs’ rich imagination and moral standards – if incompatibilities and conflict over this initial rush mount, the relationship can end quickly, with INFPs likely sighing that “it wasn’t meant to be.”

Dear Catie, A Happy Self.

When I woke up this morning at 9:00am, I didn’t really have a ‘plan.’ I knew I was off, I knew I wouldn’t have Elijah until tomorrow, and that I had just me, myself, and I for the next 24 hours. It’s a Thursday, but it’s also New Years Day. Is anything open? I bet not, but I bet the movie theater is. For some reason, they’re always open and it kind of makes me feel bad for the workers, but not bad enough that I didn’t get my ass up for the matinee showing of Wild (Starring Reese Witherspoon) at 10:40am.

So in I walk to the theater, having no idea what this movie is about – not even a trailer of it. Someone I loosely know knew of my situation (‘divorced’) and thought to tell me to go see it, with urgency. They were not mistaken in this suggestion. This is my first text after seeing it, to my mother:

It’s about a woman who’s had it all and lost it all and made a lot of mistakes and so she goes on a journey for herself to find the woman her mother always wanted for her (to be her Happy Self). It was just really therapeutic. I thought to myself, “Maybe I should go on a little thing, too.” And then I realized, “I already am.”

It just gives me hope that this isn’t for nothing and I will come out of it all a Happy Self.

It’s true. I really am already on my own adventure. I live by myself (sometimes with Elijah) in a new city I’ve never lived in that is much bigger than the suburbia I grew up in and the small towns I visited. The dynamic of people, their mannerisms, everything is different. At the mall, once the movie was over, I realized that sitting on the bench drinking my smoothie – no one noticed me. No one spoke to me, no one saw me — I wouldn’t even have to go on a hike across the PCT to feel solitude. Life was happening all around me – yet separate from me.

I am not writing this as a depression piece — I actually find this very beautiful. The idea that I can sit in a populated area and simply be beside myself while having the opportunity to reach out and speak to anyone I wanted, it was like a super power.

A lot of my country-living family and relatives have asked me how I can do it, and that all the sirens and noise of the highway must drive me insane. When I began to speak of the ritual at night time when I turn all of the lights out and lay on my bed, stare up at my ceiling and the noise just… enters. Cars on the highway. People in their apartments (speaking softly). The occasional, nightly sirens going off. It’s all a symphony of hyperactive life all around. You will find each of these things – though maybe isolated – in the country. They won’t be as often, and the country leaves a lot of quiet – too much quiet for me. Too much silence for my thoughts to invade where they shouldn’t and cause problems that never were.

But here? Here, it is a symphony. It is music inside of earbuds taped to my head as I drift off to sleep. I am at such peace, yet I am still able to think – and better yet, control where my thoughts linger. I am able to contemplate the last year of my life, where it ‘all went wrong, and then take a deep breath as I release the burden to the sky.

Every day that I am off, I have ventured in to the city – to a location I’ve never been. I’ve been to a hole-in-the-wall restaurant or two, a privately owned pharmacy, a coin-laundromat on the other side of town, and even walked a mall I’ve never taken time to bother with. Every day, I put myself out there without going farther than 10 miles from my new home. There’s people of all walks of life here, and I finally feel like I can belong in such a new place without everyone staring at me like I am the new girl. I’m not the new girl in town anymore. I’m the new girl in the city – and that’s exciting. I can walk around with the utmost confidence because no one knows me, no one can snoop up who my family is off a whim of asking ‘granny down the street who’s kin I belong to’ or any of the more ‘comfortable’ details of living in a small town.

And I know this won’t last forever. I know, someday I will find someone up to my level who will sway me to move elsewhere – whether it’s in Texas or not – and my single-living-apartment-adventure will end..

But it’s not about the start or finish. It’s about the journey. It always has been. I have been so focused, the last half year, on reaching the finish line of my grief. I gave up a life I had – a beautiful life that I had with a beautiful family. You will be hard pressed to find more decent and considerate folks than Mr. Donald Dyer and Mrs. Debbie Dyer, my ex-husband’s parents. I will be hard pressed to find a more compassionate man than Matthew was – and remains to be. I am so blessed to call him co-parent to my child, Elijah. That young boy will want for nothing.

As the holidays came upon us, I look on it now like it was all a blur, though at the time it was very much not. Thanksgiving came like a slap to the face. My birthday arrived a week later with news of needing to pack everything up immediately and find a place to live, my dad having hardship that aided this, and then being single for my birthday for the first time in.. at least a decade. Then three weeks blew by as I packed, searched, found, scavenged for the money, and then moved in three days before Christmas. I didn’t even have a tree, let alone the amount of presents I wanted for Elijah – but we’re doing fine. He made out like a bandit. But I was single, once more, for the third anniversary of celebration in a row within a month. Thanksgiving. My birthday. Christmas.

It was a lot of grief, a lot of pain they don’t tell you about. I remember texting my mother the day of Christmas, prepared to beg that I stay home because it was all too much. But instead, I decided it was time to get out of bed. It was time to go see my family – because that’s what it is about and I lost sight of that. I went and had the best time at my stepfather’s parents’ house with the whole family, eating, laughing, playing games. My sister, her best friend, and I went to the movies for a double feature and I didn’t get home until the early morning next day.

I feel like I was prepared for New Years Ever, and then Day. I had made it through the past month with my head above water, and a strong mind. Crying is alright, and grief is a place I went for the holidays, but the important thing to remember is not to live there. This, too, shall pass.

New Years Eve was a blast. New Years Day was a revelation, not because of the first day of a new year but because of the events that happened on it.

It’s time to stop grieving.

It’s time to let it go.

It’s time to be a Happy Me.

Dear Catie, Hippy Jesus and Hamptons Jesus.

I know I’ve been talking a lot about religion lately – whether I’m for it, against it, in the middle of figuring out what the fuck about it.

I’m a hot mess about religion, let me tell you – except I don’t need to tell you because you already know (as does anyone else who’s reading this blog.)

(I’m pretty sure God reads our blog.)

So, what threw me off of religion this time was yet another argument I had with my cousin about religion. My cousin grew up with religion in her life. I did not. She has been going to church since she was born. I started (consentually) going in my teenage years (because I wanted to hang out with the cute boys) and then seriously when I was about twenty-years-old. This was during my ‘I want to find Jesus to save my marriage, because I heard you can’t have a marriage without Jesus in it’ phase. When that fell through – and didn’t ‘fix’ my marriage, I gave up again. Then when my marriage fell apart (I am not blaming this on religion at all, by the way, readers), I went back to church to try again.

As you recall, it. was. fantastic. I found people who believed in the same kind of Jesus as I did. This is a direct quote from myself when I was speaking with our mutual friend Melisha / Lareia.

“Shit has been so damn difficult lately, and it’s made me think about religion a lot.

I am torn between Religion and God. I believe God exists, but I just wish I found a group of people who felt the same about him as me – and that’s hard to find. Even more so, I feel like it’s about the relationship between myself and God. Not the relationship between Religion and I. But just like a new friend you’ve met and think is totally awesome and great and all that, you want to introduce them to your friends and you want your friends to like them too because you like your friends and you like this new friend and it would just be so much simpler if you had more than just the two of you to hang out with.

That’s what kills me. I don’t have friends who know my ‘friend’ / God the way I do, or don’t see Him the way I do, or whatever. Now, this isn’t just a ‘I have friends who are atheists’ cry, this is a ‘I have friends who have a different kind of friend named God that they think have rules and regulations on how to be friends and etiquette and blah blah. Like, their God (in my metaphor) is from the Hamptons and there are rules of being that classy and that great. Don’t air dirty laundry. Don’t talk filthy. Don’t wear certain clothing. People can see you, so be on your best behavior 100% of the time.

Meanwhile, me and the God I know and love are kickin’ it back in our sweatpants watching Netflix marathons. We talk about all kind of things – things I’m proud of and things I’m not. And when it’s just us I feel so great and fantastic. I’m relaxed. I feel like I’ve got my shit together – even if the laundry’s not done.

But I still have friends who don’t know him, or they think he belongs in the Hamptons, and I just.. It’s hard. It’s like, not only does believing in him narrow the field of people who I could potentially get along with / date, but even further still, the Him that I believe him narrows the field even more to impossible percentages.

So then, with it being so small a number of people that I’ve met that feel the same, I’ve begun to think in the back of my mind: What if I am in the wrong? What if it’s MEANT to have all the damn rules and Hamptons shit? I mean, he’s GOD, shouldn’t he be treated like royalty like the Hamptons kids?

Or what if my God is an imaginary friend? What if he doesn’t actually exist and I’ve made him up because I seriously cannot deal with life sometimes and rather than feeling like my misery and existence is all for nothing and why not just die today, I made up a story about a creator who gives it purpose, suddenly?

Shit is hard. But no matter how many times I’ve tried, I cannot shake the feeling that he’s real. So, I’m back to the scenario of my God being too chill and loving like a hippy than like the Hamptom kids want.

Ugh. I hope all of that made sense to you. I have the Hampton kids analogy because I wasn’t born in to religion. I wasn’t forced to go to church or anything. I didn’t know about God until I was a teenager, and then I only went because it was the ‘cool thing to do’ in my circle of friends. Then when Elijah was born, I tried discovering more about it, but was shunned because of my circumstance by the Southern Baptist churches and like minded churches.

Then I started looking for nondenominational churches, and I always remember thinking that big churchs that have fancy shit in them must be Hampton like — but the one I found “IBC – Irving Bible Church” is huge, and has a lot of people. So much people that I feel like not everyone in the room is watching me as an outsider, but also that there’s so many people that they split in to study groups for those of even more like-minds… So people like me can find each other, but also more specifically, people like me in my age group, or people like me with kids as a SINGLE parent… That’s one I’d never seen before.”

So, my darling cousin (whom I love enormously, which is why this hurt so much) and I were speaking about a mutual friend we have. This mutual friend has become pregnant outside of wedlock with a guy she fell in love with (at 18/19 years old..sound familiar?) and so now they’re engaged to be wed and are moving to California for it all (where his family lives) and my cousin is.. just not having it.

But that’s besides the point. That just started our little debate, in which Hannah said she couldn’t support anything about any of that, because she’s recently decided that in her ‘faith journey’, she’s going to adopt Admonishment. Admonishment is defined as follows:

“to express warning or disapproval to especially in a gentle, earnest, or solicitous manner”

“to indicate duties or obligations to”

Now, I understand that this is meant as “gentle and earnest” manners, but to me, it also reads in as a lot of… judging others, disapproving of them, and then suggesting what they ought to do for their own good — which, you know, I just love to hear about. And in addition, there is way too little room between the boundaries of stepping on that line or over it when trying to do this in the most gentle way possible.

Anyway, I don’t believe in getting in other’s business like that, or telling them what they should do or shouldn’t. I don’t feel like it is my job to judge anyone for their sins. That’s God’s job. It’s not my job to see if they’re truly repenting or if they ‘deserve’ Heaven or not. Why would you try? We don’t deserve Heaven, or God’s love. That’s the whole point. We will never be worthy, YET HE LOVES US. How crazy and unconditional is that?

What’s that word I just used? Unconditional? I feel like religion based upon ‘do this or don’t benefit’ or ‘do this and you’re damned’ is kind of against the whole ‘died for our sins’ policy.

Now, don’t get me wrong. If you ask me for advice, or it’s something life-threatening to you or another, I will probably say, “Hey, think about this before you do it, because it could be a bad time.” But am I going to look down on you? Am I going to judge you, you heathen? No. I am not perfect, and that would make me come off as holier than thou. Which, I personally feel, this Admonishment movement with Hannah is making her come out to be.

We fight all the time over it, and this argument we had the other day.. broke me. I said fuck it. I said if this is how religion is, then why the fuck would I believe in it? It’s so hopeless. I cannot strive with the anxiety every day of wondering if I have been good enough, or if one of my friends is going to fucking judge me because of whatever mistake I made forever. And I love Hannah. I love her so damn much it hurts that we fight like this, over something so vulnerable for me, something so personal to me. To have what I believe, and have struggled so hard to believe shut down as false, to be told I’m doing it wrong, to be told that my God is not the same, not the correct God…

I mean, fuck it, right?

 

So I gave up on Him for a little while. I mean, Hannah has been doing this her entire life, right? So she has all the authority on this over me. I should trust her, believe her. Even if it makes me never want to look towards Him again.

 

And then I had a thought.

 

Miranda. God knows you. He knows you exactly where you are right now in your life, in your past, and in your future – should you choose it. He knows what He’d like, and he knows what you’ll choose. He meets you where you’re at, and he takes you and lifts you up. He is in everything you appreciate, everything you struggle with – guiding you from the straying path. And even in this, even in an argument about Him, He still waits. He knows what hurt it’s causing. He knows that moderation is key. He knows that while mistakes happen, strive for Faith, Hope, and Love. He is forgiving, while condemning – something I believe only he can do, truly and deeply, as he is not human, and he is not prone to these mistakes that humans are – which, again, is why I don’t think we have the right or capacity to do so. Especially those of us without training, education in this specific field, and seminar.

 

So, I still love Him. Thank goodness, He still loves me and I don’t have to worry about how many mistakes I make that will finally make Him leave me. Hannah is going to be how she is, and I can’t change that, but.. I can just not talk to her about God. She just may have to be one of those people who can’t hang with my chill Jesus, and that’s hard – because we’re so close – but it’s also what keeps me sane and I would rather get along with Jesus than with her without him.

 

I hope any of this made sense. I love you, Catie.

 

Miranda

P.S. This gif is hilarious, because as punny as it is, this is literal bible thumping:

 

Dear Catie, It’s Nobody’s Business, But Here’s My Last Six Months In Gifs. (Featuring Emma Stone and the cast of Easy A)

 I mean, not really. I’m figuring it out for the most part and I’m pretty proud of how far I’ve come thus far in the journey. But, still. Here’s a quick series of gifs that explain how I feel, despite feeling all of this and having select few people who know little or nothing about me ask me how I’m doing, because… Let’s face it. They’re not doing it out of my best interest. They want the scoop, the dish, and the gold medal of being a friend ‘whose shoulder I can cry on, if I want to.’ Thanks.

When I made the decision to separate, and told close-to-me people. Thanks for the vote of confidence that I have an idea of what my life is like, and what it isn’t.

Which brought this on:

The gold-trophy-award-friend who gives me a shoulder to cry on to win said award (and gossip):

When I go on a date (since our separation):

I mean, dang. How do you really feel about me and my life decisions?

Because I’m tired of hearing this:

One thing I’ve learned about people who are divorced (and those who end up as single parents like myself), is to not be so judgmental. It’d be great if others did the same for me, you know, if you wanna be friends that is.:

So now, on my days off (Sundays), this is me… By myself… Being awesome:

And finally:

Love you, Catie. I’ll end with this:

Dear Catie, Catastrophic Thinking.

I am posting this because it is one of those things that I feel is highly relatable to others in our positions as parents, moms, or anyone who gets weighed down by how big the world can feel when we let our minds run away without us. This story was written for my creative writing class by yours truly.

Enjoy.

With the best of intentions, I crawl in to bed at precisely 8:46 in the evening. This is after I have brushed my teeth, gone to the bathroom, taken a shower, cleansed my face from the day, and taken a glass of water with me to the bedroom. I am quite certain that if I get in to bed at 8:46 in the evening, I will have estimated the correct amount of time to fall asleep by 9:00PM.

I want to fall asleep by 9:00PM because I have set out an endeavor to awake by my alarm clock at 7:00AM. This grants me an allowance of ten hours in which I may rest which is honestly more than enough. In all likelihood I will wake up earlier than that if I am truly to fall asleep by 9:00PM.

However, as insomnia would have it, by 9:13PM my heart is racing as the ideas gallop across my brain and in to words. I hear my voice reading a bedtime story to me. I’m intrigued and delighted so much that I surrender any attempts to fall asleep and spring from the bed. There will be no sleep until this idea is placed on a memo and tucked away for when I have more time.

I don’t get back into bed until 10:57PM. By now, I know that if I can force myself into slumber, I will not even get eight hours of sleep, which is commonly known as the correct amount of sleep required for good health. If I don’t have good health, then I am not going to be very good at anything I have to do tomorrow. So, I really need to fall asleep. Like, now.

I sigh and open one eye to sneak the time reading on my alarm clock. Somehow, my alarm clock has malfunctioned. It now reads 11:21PM. How can this be? Did I doze off into a nap? I don’t feel like I did, but then again, it could have been one of those cat naps where time jolts forward and you feel energized and ready for the day. The only problem is that I don’t want to feel ready for the day. I want to feel exhausted. Maybe I’ve just been thinking too long and time trickled with each rabbit hole I jump through. I look at the clock again and realize I’ve lost another twenty minutes.

At this rate, I am not going to get a healthy amount of sleep. This means I won’t want to wake up at 7:00AM. If I don’t get up at 7:00AM, then I am not going to want to work out. If I don’t work out, then I am not going to lose weight and build muscles and boost my metabolism and get more endorphins. If I don’t get all of that, I will fall into a rut of exhaustion and depression first thing when I wake up.

I check the clock again. I’ve lost an hour thinking about all the weight I need to lose and in all the places I wish I could thin out. My hips. My thighs. My stomach. My arms.

Now, I am beginning to ponder if it will be worth it to go to class in the morning at all. Perhaps, I should sacrifice class and regrettably my grade for what really matters in life: my job. My job is needed to make money. I need money to take care of my son, my husband, and my obsession with organic food which is ridiculously over priced. But wait, I don’t want to forget school or I’ll have wasted all this time working so hard to stick with it and get good grades. I’ll have wasted every morning I didn’t sleep in when I desperately wanted to, but I can’t fall asleep and it’s — I sneak another look at the clock — already 2:00AM.

I might as well call in to work. I can stay home and keep my son in my arms all day. We can have an impromptu Mother-Son date at the park. We have look like all of those ads about having a family where everyone is smiling and laughing at the funniest thing in the world.

Wait, how am I going to do that? My son is three years old. My son is testing his boundaries every fifteen minutes and driving me up the wall. If I don’t get any sleep, my son will have to face off with my grumpy attitude and then I’ll be the worst mother in the world because I can’t fall asleep to take care of my son.

I can’t fall asleep for my son. I can’t fall asleep for my job. I can’t fall asleep for my school work and classes. I can’t fall asleep for my happiness. I can’t fall asleep.

It’s 3:00AM and I start to feel very small against this mountain of regret for things not yet to pass. The future seems to miserable and the past only proves the pattern waiting for me. If I am destined to fail, why bother trying at all?

I’ve started to cry about not being able to get to sleep and how it’s going to ruin my life at 3:13AM. I give in to the miserable acceptance that I will never get my life together on a schedule that so many other people seem to run the pace of. I begin to curl into a ball beneath the covers when the door cracks open to my bedroom.

In comes my husband with a blanket bundle in his arms. My son peaks out from beneath the blankets with sleepy eyes and mumbles, “Hi Mama.” My thoughts stop. My heart races in their place.

“Someone couldn’t get to sleep,” My husband explains of our son. I thought he had spoken of me. He brings the bundle to my side of the bed and I wrap my arms around his shoulders. He is warm and comforting. My husband slips into bed on the other side, wrapping his arms around me.

In a quick moment, I hear my son begin to snore. His eyes are closed tight. I smile and new thoughts swim in a calm pool of my mind. I am the key to my son getting any sleep tonight. I am the comfort my husband comes home from work to. My arms are the strongest thing in existence because they hold my whole world in their hands.

If I don’t wake tomorrow at 7:00AM, then I will sleep with my son beside me. My husband will wake up an hour or so later, and I will awaken because the bed springs back up without his weight. I will have enough time to shower and drive to class. I will feel so good about getting out of class that I will smile at work today. My smile could be the comfort someone else needs. It most definitely will be the comfort my son reaches for when I return home for the day, and when I get in to bed tomorrow night at 8:46PM, the knowledge that I can reflect the world that I hold in my arms tonight will prepare me for a brighter morning.

I don’t know what time it was when I finally fell asleep, but I do know in whose arms I was in and whose arms were in mine. This is no catastrophe.