I fought exhaustion a lot over the course of the past few years. The waves were all consuming. I could sleep in, in the morning then nap in the afternoon and early evening and still sleep soundly at night. Sleep was an escape. Sleep was a coping mechanism. I lost myself (and several days) to sleep.
I was so physically tired that I thought that perhaps my body was trying to tell me something. Maybe there was a disease or sleep disorder of some kind at the root of this exhaustion. My yearly physical unveiled nothing but I was referred to another doctor who ordered a sleep study. Again, nothing extraordinary was discovered.
As I fought the waves of tiredness and slept through yet another episode of Dancing With the Stars last night ... I felt the difference.
Before, the exhaustion hit me like a tidal wave. As the exhaustion levels peaked, so did my stress levels. I was walking against the current in my life. I was fighting with everything that I had, to make an unworkable situation work. I was depressed and depressing. So I slept. Whenever possible.
Now? I am still tired. But I am going with the current in my life.
A lot of the time, I am kept awake simply by the momentum that my life has gained. I am working by day and squeezing in a handful of extra-income-opportunities by night (and weekends).
I wake up in the morning with an agenda. I can ill afford to waste my early morning hours sleeping because if I do, I will sacrifice the time in my day that I cherish the most. My early-morning reading and writing hours. These are the hours that I ground and nurture myself.
At the end of my days, I am tired. Just tired. Tired from living a full day and the desire to sleep a good, sound sleep so that I can wake up in the morning and do it all over again.
I work to attain the exhaustion I once felt. Now? It feels pretty good to simply feel tired.