Come on, admit it: Even though the holidays are just fantastic-great food, great company, great fun-they are exhausting!
From pushing and shoving through the craziness of department stores to find ‘that perfect gift’ to baking and cooking and cleaning up and getting ready for guests, this time of the year can be, well, brutal.
Add to that the tasks involved with working, owning a company, or managing a business, along with other familial obligations (the kids don’t stop dirtying up the house and the spouse doesn’t stop needing clothes ironed just because it’s December) and what do you have?
Today I was thinking about that old commercial. You know it, so sing along. “I can bring home the bacon, fry it up in a pan, and never never let you forget your a man, ’cause I’m a woman . . . .” and rather than add on the company’s name at the end I added on my own ending: “And I’m fatigued!”
The thing that I have noticed, though, is that women really don’t know when they are fatigued. It’s like we are in the middle of a pile of dirty laundry but unaware of the piles of clothes.
Why is this? I’ve heard we take pain well because we have to-otherwise we’d never have children. Does this mean that we can”t spot when we are dead tired because we have to be able to function this way in order to keep the household going?
When was the last time that you were sick but actually laid down and took a nap or rested to feel better?
That being said, I fall victim to the same thing. I am sick, but I don’t understand how badly I feel until I walk out of the other side. That’s when I realize the sun is bright, the birds are chirping and wow, I really, really was sick.
This week it took the form of mouth ulcers. If you don’t suffer these nasty creatures, you’re lucky. I never get colds, well, rarely, but I get tons of ulcers in my mouth. Last week I had two on the right hand side; this week they invaded the left. Two of them. I suffered through the shopping, wrapping, and guests. I made it through Christmas morning, and then the day after Christmas when, around noon, my daughter ended up with a 103 degree temperature. Then I realized she was sick and, aha!, so was I.
Make it a plan this coming year to take care of yourself. Recognize the signs. I always know when I’m sick better when I am taking care of myself than I do when I am under stress. I think we have a tendency to push away the aches and pains when we are knee deep in the middle of things. So, here are a few tips to keep yourself in check throughout the next year. Please use them, so that you can keep yourself healthy and recharged! Now that I feel better I realize that I was down, dragging, overly tired and sad because I was actually sick. Had i known that in the first place, maybe I could have just lay down and rested for a few days until I felt better!
Happy New Year! I hope that 2009 is prosperous and healthy for you all!
1. Do yoga. Seriously, just taking some quiet time, even if it is only twenty minutes at the end of each day, really helps to refresh the mind and body. Do some gentle stretching or some deep breathing. Sit up or lay down on the floor and just quiet your mind. If you are doing this, you are more aware of how you feel. You can easily let the stress go, or you can quickly recognize that your body is run down and needs a break.
2. Eat well and/or take a multivitamin. I swear by my prenatals (and guess what, since we moved I have not been taking them and I’ve gotten sick twice!) Make sure you are getting enough in the form of veggies and fresh fruit. Though I don’t do a raw diet, I do believe that the more natural the form of food you eat (ie: raw veggies to snack on versus frozen), the healthier.
3. Get some fresh air and exercise! Take a walk in the morning, bike ride at night. Play frisbee with the kids. Just get outside and get your heart moving. Exercise really makes you feel good and refreshed, even if you are tired going into it.
4. Listen to your body. This is key for mothers! We listen to everyone else and take care of them, but we have to start listening to our own bodies so we know when we are starting to feel run down. If your head hurts, stop. If you feel overly tired, get to bed early. The clothes wil wait. Believe me, they are always there, in big piles-taking one night off of washing and folding will not kill you!