Tonight, I Felt Evil

For the past week, I’ve had boundless energy, and the combination of overextending myself, plus last night’s extreme insomnia, let me to crash today.  But, because I couldn’t get enough sleep today, I wasn’t just exhausted:  By tonight, I felt evil.

During the past seven days, I’ve entertained my three sons—my stepsons, ages 15 and 13, and my son, age 4 ¾—by taking them on two downtown-Chicago adventures because my husband needed to work.  A non-cook, I made a delicious Thanksgiving dinner, complete with a turkey my husband called “perfect” and other homemade fixings.  I’ve completed a great deal of Christmas shopping.  I’ve been washing and reorganizing the contents of each and every drawer and cabinet in my kitchen.  I’ve been designing gemstone bead necklaces, bracelets and earrings, then pricing my more than 140 pieces, for my at-home jewelry show next Tuesday.   I’ve drafted this week’s e-newsletter for my son’s preschool.  I’ve completed Room Parent duties, once again for my son’s preschool.  I’ve paid bills.  I’ve done laundry and cooked and cleaned.

I overextended myself because I am thrilled to finally have so much energy, now that I’m in my 19th week of pregnancy, but also because, when I was pregnant with my son five years ago, I was either restricted or on bed rest from my 27th week of pregnancy on. 

Because I was experiencing premature dilation, I was initially put on bed rest, in which I was only permitted to be mobile to urinate and take one shower per day.  As my pregnancy progressed, bed rest was lifted, but I was told not to drive, shop, cook, clean, do laundry, walk up or down stairs, lift more than five pounds and so on.    

Knowing that I may have only two more months in which I am able-bodied and out of bed, I feel pressured to accomplish as much as physically possible—and to accomplish it now.

Today, even though I barely slept last night, I got up early to wake up my 13-year-old stepson, who spends most Monday nights with us.  I showered, made him his gluten-free breakfast, made him his gluten-free lunch, then woke up my 4-year-old, because we needed to drive my stepson to school. 

After dropping my stepson off, my son and I went to Target, which conveniently opens at 8 a.m., to do some Christmas shopping, grocery shopping and to buy gift bags and boxes for my upcoming jewelry show.

When my son and I got home, we ate a late breakfast, after which we played with Play-Doh.  Then, my son, who currently wants to be a paleontologist, and I worked for the next hour and a half, “as a team,” to excavate a pretend Pterosaur dinosaur fossil from plaster. 

I was so beyond-tired that, starting around 11:30 a.m., I started to look at the clock, wishing it would be 12:45 p.m., the time that, on Tuesdays, my son gets picked up for his preschool carpool, so I could take a nap.  I am so blessed to have my son, so I felt guilty that I was too exhausted to enjoy him, that I was literally counting the minutes until he was out the door.

But, when he left for school, I didn’t have time to take a nap:  I had to work on the preschool e-newsletter, so I could e-mail it off for approval, because I distribute it tomorrow.

It wasn’t until 2:30 p.m. that I was able to nap, setting my alarm for 3:30 p.m., so I’d be up by the time my son is dropped off after school.  I was so dead-asleep when my alarm blared that I reset it for 3:45 p.m., giving me just enough time to make it downstairs to greet my son.

When he got home, we talked about his afternoon at school; about how he worked on Map 2 today, but didn’t focus on Greenland; about who was nice; about who didn’t want to play tag on the playground; about the girl he thinks is the coolest because she has two ponytails.  We played with his army men, a game in which he graciously said we could be shooting bouncy balls, instead of bullets, because he knows that I hate guns.  After a major bouncy-ball battle, we watched a movie, ate dinner, and then I gave him a bath.

When he was in the tub, playing for a few minutes after I’d washed him, I started to feel evil.  I didn’t want to him to “play for a few minutes,” his normal routine, because I just wanted to go to bed.  But, I let him. 

After he got out of the tub, I decided that I needed to take a bath too, that hopefully it would make me feel better.  When he asked me to help him put on his pajamas, I refused.  He dresses himself every day, so he knows how to put on his pajamas too, but I was curt, and, being tired too, he cried as a result.

I apologized for my tone, telling him that I am just so tired that I feel sick.  I took a bath, which did make me feel better.  I read my son just one book, not the multiple ones that we read every night.  I lay down next to him because he’s afraid of the dark, and he was asleep within minutes. 

But, of course, by then, 8:20 p.m., I’d waited so long to sleep that I was wired.  My husband had a business dinner tonight, so I decided to sit up in bed to write this post while waiting for him to come home.  He just did, and he was so tired that he said hi, then crawled into bed, asking me to type elsewhere.

Now downstairs on the couch, I’m going to post this, climb into bed myself, and hopefully sleep all night long.  And, tomorrow, I’ll scale back on what I try to accomplish.  I don’t want to waste another day, not able to enjoy my son, because all I can think about is sleep.

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