Ok, y’all. (Did I just say that??) This post will probably be more of a verbal spew than a well-written composition. But I’ve had some stuff on my mind lately that I think I need to follow through with.
Actually, I have stuff on my mind 100% of the time. And one of the things on my mind is how foggy my mind is. That just sounds idiotic to me. But it’s true. And I have been worried about my level of forgetfulness, my level of distracted and unorganized thought patterns. Sure, there are a million potential reasons. Maybe the ongoing sleep deprivation from having two boys that seem to trade off being good sleepers and hitting illness or developmental issues that cause disruptive sleep. Maybe my thyroid (I have a biopsy scheduled for next week, by the way, so prayers appreciated!). Maybe food related. Maybe information overload. Maybe addiction to poor substitutes for social connection (facebook, instagram). Don’t get me wrong…I am inspired significantly by so many friends on both of these mediums, and I DO get a lot of social benefit from participating. But it is also contributing to a spectator lifestyle, as well as the information overload.
Speaking of information overload…we have access to infinite amounts of information at the touch of a fingertip. I am in over my head thinking about our future housing options and desire to build. We don’t know the first thing about buying land in the country and building a house. We don’t know what type of house we can afford or what kind we want. But I can find a MILLION or more resources and ideas on Pinterest and Google! And one link leads to another! I am constantly learning more about food intolerances and ways to lose weight and supplements we need and things we should be doing to improve our health. I am constantly scouring the internet for answers to our boys fluctuating sleep issues, often scrolling through my phone in the middle of the night out of desperation. Not exactly helping my own sleep hygiene by doing so. But you get desperate and you’re up anyway, right?
I have a million things I need to do. I am not kidding when I say we have a garage and a basement FULL of stuff that needs to be sold and donated. I have two closets full of things that still need to be organized since we moved into this house. And I have giant piles of laundry in every room of the house. But I am exhausted from middle of the night sleep disruptions (and I swore I would never be that mom that didn’t get sleep…but kids don’t follow the rules, nor do they have their issues in sync with each other when you have kids of different ages). And my mind is overwhelmed. I can’t wrap my head around how to catch up. We have major financial things to get in order. But we are exhausted at the end of the day, and know that we will likely be up in the middle of the night, possibly more than once, and there is only a short window of time between when the boys go to bed and when we need to go to bed, and the energy to keep going during that short window is simply not there. Are we alone in this situation? I don’t know. We are obviously not Type A, stay on top of everything people. It would be nice if at least one of us were, but apparently, neither of us is. So things spiral out of whack.
Now, I do feel like I have some physical reasons for brain fog: sleep deprivation is a real thing, and it is a serious thing. And thyroid issues obviously cause legitimate, hormonal reason for forgetfulness and fatigue. I don’t know if I can separate the two in my situation, to identify which is causing more detriment to my cognitive and emotional status. I suspect the sleep issues are the more dominant problem.
Out of these three things (sleep, thyroid/hormone, info overload), there is only one area I can take full control of at the moment.
Again, maybe I’m not giving myself enough grace. But here’s the deal. It may not take a lot of energy to coast along my instagram or FB feeds. But it takes a lot of my time. And it loads my already overloaded brain with MORE info, MORE inspiration, MORE things to fight against comparing myself to. And, while I have found INCREDIBLE support and help from people in these forums when I have been desperate for advice and answers, I am thinking I need to get off the grid a little bit.
Ironically, I’m posting a blog post to the “grid” so to speak, about needing to get OFF the grid. But, I think it’s a necessary step for me, for a season at least. At the moment, I don’t have balance. And I desperately need it. And regardless of the thought process behind it, I feel like it is a direct instruction from the Lord for me, for a season. I see people taking “Facebook fasts”, and I totally get it. I’m not doing this to follow a trend. Nor am I doing it to make a social statement about our over-dependence on social media. I’m not even going to call this a “fast” of sorts. But…I’m making a choice about my own involvement for the time being.
I would drop FB altogether, but it’s better than email for keeping all your contacts from past and present in one place. And it’s a networking place for small business, and momma advice. I would drop IG altogether, but it is the one social media place that I feel is the most positive, and it just does hold a special place in my heart (I know that sounds silly). I used to do a lot on Twitter, but I cut that out a long time ago, because I just can’t keep up with all these things.
So here’s the deal. For one month…well, maybe to make it even more clear cut, until the first of June, “birthday week” (mine and my husband’s birthdays), I plan to limit FB and IG, as well as Pinterest and online research for life stuff to the following for my involvement:
-Usborne Books & More business (I have a FB party coming up, and would love to host more, so let me know if you are interested!)
-Handwriting tutoring business (I am gearing up to do some summer tutoring sessions/classes, so stay tuned for more info this week!)
-direct message/communication for specific needs/questions, and limited to 1 or 2 times a day.
-for a month I plan to stop researching home options, new meal ideas/recipes, or toddler sleep strategies. I have MORE THAN ENOUGH info to work with. And I don’t HAVE to have a house plan yet or any time too soon. But I do have work to do around here, soon. So I need to stop the info search! If I do happen across a link I want to save in any of these areas, yes, I may pin it. But I’m not going to search or keep following links. No surfing.
-I also want to not use my phone for my entertainment. I waste too much time playing solitaire and watching ASMR videos to drone out my mind so I can sleep. I go to my phone when I am bored. I go to my phone after way too short a time of “quality” time with my kids. I need to be reading books! Reading my Bible. Writing. Playing. Crafting. Giving. There are so many more productive things to do for “fun”, and to unwind my stressed out brain. I need less glow of electronic light in my eyes. And so do my kids. It’s springtime. Time to get out and do more. Even if it is really just “hanging out” outside. It’s more than staring at a phone.
-I plan to be able to text and communicate with friends and family. But, because of my “addiction” to my phone, I plan to put my phone out of reach, in one place, and designate a tone just for my husband, so I know it’s him. Otherwise, I will check it at designated times. Just like if I were at work. Being at home, without a boss, has made it too easy to think I’m just briefly looking something up, or checking for updates…but it ends up being way too frequently, or too long. I’m not saying this should be what everyone does. I just need to challenge myself to remember, there was life prior to the smart phone. And I need to relearn what it is like to live without depending on it every second. And I have a feeling it is going to be a tough withdrawal period.
So….starting tomorrow officially, if you see a lot less of me, that is why! If you want to share something with me, you can tag me, or you can message me. I will check it and I will chat back! But just know it may not be within minutes of the message. 🙂 I’ll let you know how things are going at some point!