Good day, midlife woman. It's about noon here, and I just woke up--from my second round of sleep.
I've heard many midlife women report sleep disturbances. The episodes stem from various causes.
I awoke at 7:30 when my new cat, Toby, came into the bedroom causing the light from a neighboring bedroom window to reflect off the white door he'd just opened, blinding me right through my sleepy eyes.
I tried to go back to sleep because I'd not gone to bed until 3. As I tried to doze off, though, restlessness and ruminations began. I saw my children as the cute preschoolers they once were, and then as older children I tried to manage, and finally as the bold and self-serving adult children they are now.
The Fight for Control
Frustrating thoughts arose of me wanting my children to love God, stay in church, and have a social life with good friends. Isn't that what every mother wants? But I have no control over any of that.
My dream is they have good jobs and eventually meet and marry Christians from families I'll be able to get along with.
I crave for my video game addicted husband and son to engage in ways only I can imagine, which is contrary to how they're wired, or so they tell me.
Depressing feelings increase the more I think about it all. I have no answers. I can't seem to control my overtired mind.
Stretch and Pray
Still in bed, I stretch like a pretzel, hearing every ligament creak. I try to work out whatever body issue might be triggering the annoying head buzzing/ear ringing that appears every few days making me more miserable; an issue that began in menopause.
I change rooms, make myself comfortable, and pick up one of the empty nest books I recently bought. There I read how thoughts about unpleasant parts of our role as mother may randomly pop up. We don't like to remember negatives, but we do. I feel anguish.
The author reminds me there is a long phase of grief and transition to walk through. She talks about how she too often has awoken with feelings of despair that were hard to shake.
The book talks about us getting the rest we need and deserve and about turning our trust to God.
I tell God I feel a mess and ask him to intervene. I picture my children and husband as square blocks and hand them over asking God to manage them. I picture myself with no responsibility to control any of them. I give myself permission to relax and rest.
I don't tell you this for sympathy or to make you worry, I tell you because I know others face similar moments, and it can help to hear from other women have had similar struggles.
We are human. Episodes like this are a product of how we're built. We don't like them. We fight them. We try to prevent them. And sometimes, they just appear. When they do, we know we need to make the right choices and let God come in to the rescue.