Sunday, December 16, 2007

Examining My Mental Health

I have always been a little bit OCD. I am not a neat/ clean freak (not Monk) but I like to have things go where they are supposed to go. I need them to be put away WHERE THEY GO. CORRECTLY. My organization is my own. It might not make sense to anyone else. And if it is not right, it makes me crazy. I also count things all the time. Like, if I am stirring cookie dough.... I count how many times I stir it. Or if I am driving behind someone I memorize their license plate #. Weird stuff like that. I also hate for my food to touch. Some foods can touch other foods, some cannot ever touch other foods or they must be thrown away. And corn? Cannot EVER be in anything. Soups with corn? Make me want to vomit. I love corn. Just not in anything and not touching anything. I know. It's weird.

I also am borderline bi-polar. I am mild enough that I do not need medication (yet) but I recognize that a lot of my emotional issues stem from this. The highs and lows. The irritability. The inability to handle this SAHM gig.....

I also suffer from the "super mommy" problem. I expect myself to be able to raise 3 kids, keep the house perfect, have dinner home made every night and still be dressed to kill when hubby gets home. AND want to have sex after having two babies pulling on me all day.

I have been struggling with depression for the past... while. I don't know if it is post partum depression or just a combination of lack of sleep and the crap we have gone through over the past few years. It is only lately that I have seen how bad it has been.

So, now, I can see the problems I am having. And I recognize the fact that if I make a plan to do something, a goal, and don't follow through it makes me very anxious. Very stressed and upset. I also hate to be late for anything. With 3 kids being late is an everyday occurrence.

I have decided that one thing that I can do for myself to deal with this is to start to set more realistic goals for myself. I am not perfect. My house will never be perfect. My kids will never be perfect. So, my first realistic goal... the tiny baby step to getting my life under control is to get my dishwasher loaded every night before I go to bed. No matter what shape the rest of the house is in, I will load the dishwasher. Have all dirty dishes in there or soaking in the sink. This is a goal that I know that I can accomplish. And that will make me feel better, to know that I accomplished a goal.

Another thing that I am going to start doing is an "I did" list instead of a "to do" list. I will still have to do lists but geared as long range lists instead of daily. This way I am not so overwhelmed that I cannot do ANYTHING. Which is what has been happening.

And I have promised myself that I will do something for myself each week. To help me remember who I am. And to help me feel good about myself.

So.... now I have to nurse the baby. And change the boy's diaper. And make cookies......


Jen said...

About the "super mommy" problem, Mama, you are NOT Donna Reed. Nobody expects you to be perfect all of the time. We expect you to be HAPPY all of the time. We all hate, really HATE, seeing you sad and upset. So, stick to your plan and do something for yourself every week.
Love you!

Jen said...

Well, maybe not happy ALL the time, but at least content...

Anonymous said...

hopefully now that you have written out your self realizations you will be able to stick to your action plan. I gave up on Super mommy and turned into Slacker mommy. I gotta tell you, it feels good on this side. :)

Anonymous said...

You and I already talked about this but I have to say this. You are a wonderful mother in all the ways that really count. Take care of yourself and the rest will fall into place, and so what if it is not the perfect place! As long as you and the hubby can make life happy for the kids. And the last time I looked, they were! See you soon, mom.

JessicaB said...

Your post reminds me so much of myself. I have an OCD issue and am mildly bi-polar. I do take medications though. I take them for myself and my family.

My OCD revolves around the fear of my house burning. When not on meds I can hardly leave the house from the panic attacks because I need to go check everything just 1 more time even though I have already checked it 100 times.

I was actually off meds when the ocd hit. After both kids ppd started. I know there are times when I might be okay without the meds but there are more times when I wouldn't so I just stay on them.

I have also learned to put my house second. I can't do it all. If I tried to keep an emaculate house spend time with my kids, dote over my husband etc. I would fail. My house is not a pig pen but there are usually always laundry to be folded and toys to trip over but I am happy and my kids are happy. Now of course the hubby would love to have sex more but as long as he gets his attention once or twice a week he is happy.

You are are a great are a great wife....and none of that will change just because you let some things go and give yourself a break.

Good job for you. said...

I love the idea of the I did list instead of the to do -- sometimes we focus so much on what we need to do , we forget what we did!