I’m a wee bit snarky. You’re welcome.
Our whole family is sick, but mostly me. And I mean, Down For The Count, Keeping You In Bed, Can’t Get Better sick. It seemed to come from out of nowhere. Nothing is going around. No one else is sick with the Can’t Get Better virus. Just us, and mostly me.
But we have it (and by we, I mean mostly me).
At first, I thought it must be Some Weird Strain from an exotic country that happened to only hit our small house in our small town in the middle of our small state. But after several days of delirium it struck me that nothing from anywhere exotic ever reaches us, least of all Some Weird Strain. Another several days of delirium passed before my brain was able to surface and produce intelligible thought. This is what it said:
That’s it. Nothing fancy or exotic or even weird – just tiredness that seeps so far past your bones that you are probably oozing it into puddles on the floor behind you. If you could stand on the floor. But we’re not, or at least I’m not. We’re all lying in bed, so I guess the tiredness is oozing into our mattresses. I’m sure mattress manufacturers take tiredness into consideration when they design mattresses and make them so they can handle those puddles. I sure hope so. But I’m too tired to really care.
This is what my days look like:
Sleep. Wake up long enough to go to the bathroom and realize another day has started. Go back to bed. Wake up long enough to go to the bathroom and realize another day is ending. Go back to bed. Wake up long enough to go to the bathroom and realize it is the middle of the night and you’re starving. Eat a cracker and get full before you finish the second one. Notice your small child is also eating a bowl of cereal at 2am. Thankfully, she knows how to pour the milk so you can go back to bed. Repeat. Indefinitely.
I don’t remember much of the second half of May. I slept through Memorial Day while my family went to a barbecue to celebrate the end of the school year. Savannah was one of the guests of honor. I vaguely remember being disappointed that I would miss it before I fell asleep. Again.
You’d think with all the sleep I’m getting that I would feel rested and refreshed. But when you have the Down For The Count, Keeping You In Bed, Can’t Get Better sickness because of exhaustion, the amount of sleep you need could be measured against the volume of an ocean and still not be enough. And I’m talking about the Pacific Ocean even. Not something like the Arctic Ocean (which I think should maybe be called a sea and some much smarter people than me agree but I don’t get to make those decisions).
At first, I was really angry with myself. After all, why couldn’t I kick this thing? Was I just whining? Was I making it up? How could one person sleep as much as I was sleeping and still want nothing more than to go to bed? But even as the fatigue continued to own my body, my soul was able to recognize that fighting an epic battle against the forces of evil really does make you kind of tired. Or even exhausted. Or even, in my case, so tired I’m oozing tiredness into puddles into my mattress.
So, I’m working to have grace towards myself. I’m not apologizing for getting up in the middle of a conversation to go back to bed. Ok, maybe I’m apologizing for interrupting the conversation because that’s just rude to literally stand up and leave while someone is actually talking to you. But I’m not slathering myself with guilt as I slide back into my bed, which feels amazing even though I’ve worn the same pajamas for five days and haven’t washed my sheets for two weeks. Seriously.
And I’m working to have grace towards myself when I hear a small child ask me what’s for dinner and I answer something like, “I don’t know” and then don’t even bother to try to give a suggestion before I’m snoring again.
I won’t always be exhausted. I’m starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel (Joseph and I actually went out on a date last night, and I somehow managed to put on mascara). But today I’m back in pajamas and getting ready for a nap even though the only thing I’ve done today is read a book and open up a package from amazon.
Sometimes, fighting the forces of evil takes more than prayer and reading the word and sharing with people who misunderstand and keeping those who understand up to date. Sometimes, it takes a lot of sleep, too.