Addie's internal clock inexplicably shifted from 7 am to 5:30 am. Then to 5:00 am. This morning she woke up at 3, so excited for a birthday party that she couldn't go back to sleep. Eventually she did, but here I am at almost 5 am.
Addie's sleeping habits aside, I actually haven't been sleeping well myself. During Christmas break I started waking up with my heart racing and a million anxiety mice running around in my head, scurrying over all my thoughts, building stinky nests in my fears. Some of it has to do with Jules and the worries I have about her issues, but most of it has to do with the unfortunate situation we have found ourselves in regarding our exchange student.
Last August we took in an exchange student, and ultimately it hasn't worked out. Jason handles it considerably better than I do, no doubt because his expectations were and are lower than mine. I'm pretty much a nervous wreck at the failure the whole thing has become. Because this is a public blog, I won't get into specifics, but suffice to say that what was planned to be a year-long stay is now ending in a couple weeks.
I never was one of those people who would regularly lose sleep over something because I'm not especially gifted at worrying. Frankly, I just don't have the attention span for it. Obviously, I've had sleep taken from me (by adorable babies and toddlers), but there have been few moments when losing sleep was more familiar than actual sleep. The last time I remember really losing sleep was when I was pregnant with Addie (hello anxiety attacks fueled by prenatal depression!). The anxiety mice wreaked havoc in my head until I finally got help for that.
And generally the mice have stayed away since then.
But a couple months ago they came back with a vengeance, and now so are the nightly panic attacks. I keep trying to reassure myself that this too shall pass, even if the timeline feels out of control right now. I remind myself that it's a good character building experience, and I know without a doubt that God is working on some serious issues in my heart when it comes to showing gratitude, serving others, working hard, and building relationships. I also could stand to learn a lesson or three hundred about letting go of resentment towards those who didn't sign off on my agenda of expectations.
So I pray.
I pace the floor of the living room.
I recite verses from Psalms.
And this morning I decided to write here, because writing starves the mice. Me, my blog, and God are staying up and working through these struggles, and when I eventually give up, there's a pillow calling my name.