If I had to pick one word to describe 2016, it would be exhausting. It started off quite slowly, and I remember wishing for a bit more excitement.
“Be careful what you wish for,” comes to mind.
I’ve reached maximum burnout now. I’m not eating well or sleeping properly, but more concerning of all is that I feel out of control. The highs are higher than I’m comfortable with and the lows are sudden gut-wrenching drops. I pretend to be happy, and then I worry that I overcompensate. I move between my common roles of entertainer, caregiver, provider, and workaholic clumsily, consciously, and more awkwardly than usual. Sometimes the happiness is real and bizarrely that makes it even harder.
On top of that I’m still trying to shake the flu, hold down a job, commute forty five miles a day and keep the rest of my life together.
Mostly I just want to sleep.
In a few days we’re going to the Arctic Circle for a birthday trip I planned a while ago. I rather optimistically hope that a change will turn out to be as good as a rest, but I know that by that point I’ll be even more burned out from trying to get all my work done for the following week before I leave, have a big bout of travel anxiety, exhaust myself on the trip, and arrive home for a few days to fit in laundry and more work before heading to the coast for Christmas. I’m not being pessimistic. That’s just how it is.
It’s easy to start thoughts and sentences with “You should…” The reality is that it’s easier said than done. Breaking point isn’t a stranger to me. I struggle with being societally normal enough at the best of times. I may struggle, but ultimately I’m a fighter. I face my fears and my illnesses head on. And often I will fail. But they will always be able to say, “At least she tried.”