I’m well aware that stress is a factor. As a NMO patient I’ve had that tough conversation about doing too much and over extending myself more times than I’ve Googled someone. But I’ve never walked away from any of those conversations convinced that my plate is too full. Logically speaking, in my head there have been times that I could have admitted I was possibly over capacity. Yet in my heart I have always believed that the universe wouldn’t throw anything at me that I couldn’t handle. Maybe it’s maturity or maybe being a mother or maybe a phobia of another long term visit to the hospital but after last week I’m finally ready to admit that sure, I might have bitten off more than I can chew and sure, I could re-evaluate how I handle stress. Maybe.
After a whirlwind week of work (where every day is completely different as an entrepreneur), cramming for a midterm exam (I’m also working towards my Marketing degree) and feeling completely inadequate as a mother and a wife (my floors were so dirty), I jammed in time with friends and a routine MRI exam. Crazy, right? Prioritizing my tasks would make things easier but when everything needs my attention yesterday, what takes precedence?
It was a scheduled routine/we need to do a check MRI on Saturday night and since I’m not really the type to become claustrophobic I didn’t put much thought to it. Despite how painful I found the machine (not being able to move for over an hour on a hard metal table, laying on my damaged spine) what I found the most unpleasant was being still long enough to be left with my thoughts.
That’s when I’m forced to answer those nagging questions in my head I try to ignore by staying busy.
Am I a good mother and wife? I could do better.
Did I over extend our family starting this business? Probably. Too late now.
Am I great enough in my industry to be truly successful? Looks like it but who really knows?
Did I pass that exam I just wrote? Gosh, I hope so.
Do I get enough sleep/food/rest to manage my NMO? Absolutely not, but something has to give.
Am I managing my stress appropriately? Not at all. That’s an epic fail.
What am I going to do to change all this? I HAVE NO IDEA! WHAT AM I GOING TO DO???!!
If you ask anyone who knows me well they’d all tell you that I do my best work when I’m on the verge of self-destruction. You see, that’s how I was conditioned as a child. Every day was a battle of survival and when things got tough there were 2 options in life: one either gives in and plays the victim, or you dig real deep and fight harder. I watched those I love so much always play the victim and it killed (ok, it still kills me) to know they have the potential to do so much more. To compensate, I’m never satisfied with what I have. I always feel like I can do better, like I can do more. So, what I should have been thinking was:
I’m so blessed to have a great little girl and to be so loved and supported by my husband.
I’m working really hard to make sure my company is successful.
I did the best I could on that exam.
I will make conscience decisions about what I eat, getting enough sleep, and taking me time.
I will ask for help more often.
I think the secret to staying healthy (as much as NMO will allow) is to change my state of mind. My greatest weakness is my insecurities and my constant desire to take on more. If I can be conscience of those weaknesses I’ll be moving in the right direction. Maybe.