It turns out sleep is the route to all happiness. All those people who think it’s about money, friends, random acts of kindness and yoga are wrong. It’s about sleep. End of.
It’s been nearly a month since I wrote about sleep deprivation, anxiety and losing myself a little bit. Since writing that post I feel like a different woman. There are a few things that have led to this sudden upturn in happiness. Sleep (obviously) is the biggest factor. I have a whole other post to write about this but I don’t want to tempt fate just yet.
Another thing (and a big one) is friendship. When I wrote that post I had some messages from friends who I didn’t even realise read this blog. And then it was my birthday and I ended up going all slushy over all the amazing cards and presents I received. One friend (hi Natalie!) sent me a beautiful bouquet of flowers through the post and another (hi Katie) spent the day with me having lunch and a walk in the countryside. It helped me realise I’ve got a wonderful group of lovely people around me and I should probably snap out of it already.
I guess just knowing people still cared about me (I know *violins*) made a big difference. When you’re feeling low it’s easy to get locked into your own little bubble of darkness and it can feel rather lonely. To know other people were thinking of me jolted me out of that bubble.
My oldest friend sent me an ASOS voucher (hi Ellen!) and I spent it on this gorgeously comfy “I Want To Be A Unicorn” slouchy sweatshirt. I love it. I know I’ve said before that material things don’t buy happiness, but I don’t think that rule counts for jumpers that are so comfy it feels like you’re wearing a warm hug.
Feeling a bit more normal has helped me to appreciate all the little things in life that I’m usually pretty good at noticing, but haven’t done in a while. Like the smile on my kids’ faces when we go to the park. Or the rubbish jokes the NLM cracks on a daily basis. Or when I get up in the morning and the dishwasher has been emptied already and I get five extra minutes to enjoy a hot cup of Earl Grey.
Hitting a funk turned out to be a good thing, because it forced me to reassess parts of my lifestyle and tweak a few things. We joined a local health club and I’ve been going to the gym two nights a week. I’m not really a gym person but there’s a lot to be said for half an hour to clear your head on a running machine, followed by a long swim and an even longer session in the sauna.
Spending less time online has also helped – especially in the evening. I’m trying really hard to have a work cut-off point in the evening, so that I don’t end up sitting in front of my laptop and then going to bed, to inevitably lie awake with a buzzing brain. I’ve started reading books again at bedtime and being a bit kinder to myself in general. I am absolutely convinced this has made me a more patient, less stressed and shouty mum recently.
Really though, it’s all about sleep. And that, mainly, is down to the NLM and his amazing support over the past month. More on that another time. For now, here’s to sleep. Long live sleep!Follow
I’m grappling with some horrid family issues at the moment, throw a newborn and very little sleep into the mix and the past few days have been a weepy car crash. This morning Andy was on duty from 5-8 and I slept. That little reboot has left me feeling invincible!!! I’m so glad you’re feeling so much more chipper again. It’s so lovely to read. Also, hello Liberty X Mamas and Papas. Compo looks lush in it. Keep smiling, it suits you xxx
I think Compo may end up being her new blog nickname. Poor child! It’s amazing how much we take sleep for granted isn’t it? It really has the ability to affect our moods in a way I never truly understood until I had to survive on so little of it. I hope your family issues get sorted soon and you start to feel a bit better. xxx
Sleep does make a huge huge difference to everything. Glad you have some balance again lovely lady xx
I’m SO glad you’re feeling more human again……when my Molly was 16mths old I genuinely thought I was loosing my marbles – the Dr diagnosed late onset PND and wanted to pop me on antidepressants! I voted to try making a few lifestyle changes 1st – Mr W took charge of bedtime and I got an hour to myself to do whatever the heck I liked, I made a point of getting out the house more and interacting with grown ups a bit more! It made all the difference I needed to feel more like me and less like a crazy lady!
Long may your sleep continue and you stay on the happy side of the fence!
Stephs Two Girls says
Awwwwww, you’ve got a keeper there! Well done NLM! (What took him so long though?! ) you look v content in the pic. Happy belated birthday x
Mummy Pat says
This brings back some memories (that will probably be back for real when Number Two arrives) of waking up one morning after a decent sleep and feeling re-connected to my own humanity and being able to look into the cot beside the bed without feeling dreadful. But I think helpful friends make all the difference in getting a sense of self back, so it doesn’t just become about you, your partner and your baby. Thanks for posting.
Sleep is honestly SUCH a deal breaker when it comes to feeling human. I think it’s easy to go days (or months) on very little sleep and forget what it feels like to be “normal”. I love the newborn days and the baby days, but the sleep thing is hard!