Saturday, 16 November 2013

My bed companion

Gosh it's been a while. I notice that none of you are keeping me accountable. But then I don't suppose you will tell me that I'm slacking. I don't know if you have noticed that my Portrait a Week has been slipping a bit, and I'm now 2 weeks behind. I tried to remedy it a few days ago, only to discover that my camera is broken. I'm hoping like crazy that a quick trip to Wellington Photographics will fix it fast, and trying to decide whether to use an inferior camera or just take a brief break. The kids are growing fast, but not that fast.

Of course there are many other things to post about, but it's been a rough week. Often writing is a helpful distraction during a rough week, but it doesn't seem to have been this time round. And I'm often reluctant to think of them as bad weeks, because no day without Kent is a good one. But I think I know what makes the difference between a good day and bad day.

Sleep. This is the thing. Sleep helps me to manage the hard stuff better. I've been immensely tired for four and half years now, and it affects, well, my every waking moment. How I think and function is different to how it used to be, and I am used to working within the boundaries of my tiredness. I'm also used to working despite it. In the old days, this much tiredness would get me a ticket back to bed, but these days, like most mums, and especially solo mums, I just keep going. Sometimes though, the tiredness builds up to a point where I can no longer manage the hard stuff. Grief and all that comes with it becomes uncontainable. That's the difference. I've never liked thinking that sleep would make life better. Come on. Kent's not here. What's going to fix that? Nothing. But sleep can help me manage the grief appropriately. Tiredness makes it shoot out all over the place. And in my experience, grief comes only with ugliness - anger, impatience, crying at the wrong moments...

So every now and then I give a nod to sleep, and if you have some uncontainable struggles in your life, you may like to too. Sleep probably won't make them go away, but it may help you to pop them in a box for a few moments when they are just in the way. I have always needed a lot of sleep, and right now I need it to be my best friend. I've managed a couple of early nights, and quite a few not-too-late nights. They don't come with quick sleep, and they are often interrupted, but at least I am off to a good head start.

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