Hi. How are you today? I haven't cried, or thought about running away, so today is a good day. So far.
I haven't exactly been myself lately, and that is why you haven't heard from me here. I haven't been running. I haven't even been trying. Instead I have been drowning in my own life, feeling like I'm failing at everything, completely overwhelmed, stressed, exhausted, weepy, grumpy (and apparently heading up my own crew of Dwarves, though I assure you "Happy" isn't one of them). I guess you could say I've hit a rough patch.
Dr. Google seems to think I have many of the symptoms of postpartum depression, but I would not go so far as to diagnose myself. Obviously I'm not qualified to, not being a mental health professional and all. I keep coming up with good reasons why I'm not really depressed (I am still bonding well with my baby! I don't cry EVERY day! I still laugh sometimes!) Also, I'm just not sure if all of this is coming from inside of me, or if it's caused by external factors. I've been under a lot of stress lately, and I cannot tell if the stress is making me fall apart, or if the mess inside my head is making me unable to cope with and resolve the stress. Chicken or egg, right?
All I know for certain is that I have been very unhappy, and in a way that has felt out of control. It really feels like I've been losing my mind. I'm naturally a pretty cheerful person, so this is totally out of character for me. Many people in my shoes would probably see a doctor, but I'm not quite at that place yet. Part of me is holding onto the hope that maybe this is one of those things that "too shall pass," as "they" like to say. Plus there is just something sort of scary and embarrassing about having to ask for help...even writing here is uncomfortable, and if you mention it to my face, I just might die on the spot. (apologies for melodrama)
So why am I sharing this if it's so uncomfortable? Well, I know I need to reach out somehow. Even if I don't have PPD, chances are any mental health professional would suggest that I talk to someone, seek out some support. I also would probably be advised to try getting the right amount of sleep, eating healthy foods, and exercising!!! This is where the blog comes in. I really really miss ME, and I'd like to feel like myself again. I'm going to try a self-prescribed regimen of prayer, the sleep/nutrition/exercise combo, and sharing my feelings here in cyberspace with anyone who cares to read and/or respond. I really hope this will be enough to "fix" whatever is wrong with me.
Please know that I am NOT a danger to my kids or myself, and should my thoughts ever get that dark, I promise to seek professional help immediately. I'm a little nuts right now, but I'm not THAT crazy.
About the exercise thing....yeah, as life has overwhelmed me, running kept getting pushed lower on my list of priorities. When I was doing it for fun and for my physical health, it seemed less important than all the other pressing demands on my time and energy. Now things have changed, and I need to run for my MENTAL health! If I can't get myself back on track, then I can't function the way I need to, and the way my family needs me to. So now running will be one of my top priorities! (I'm going to make an effort in the sleep and nutrition departments too, but I anticipate much more success with the running...) I'm not focusing on any particular race goals -- for right now, my goal is just to make the time to exercise as often as possible and necessary to help me feel better! It's all about the endorphins!! I will re-evaluate all other fitness goals once I'm not a stark-raving lunatic anymore. :)
If you prefer to read about running and racing and have no interest in what's going on in my head, you may want to take some time off from my blog. Pop back in sometime in early 2012 and hopefully I'll be back to normal by then. But if you don't mind providing me with a bit of free therapy, please stick around and let's talk me through this! Just, you know, remember to keep the conversation here online, so I don't have to die of embarrassment if/when we see each other...