On Easter Sunday, my pastor’s wife took a few moments after the service to ask how I was doing, and asked about my job.
Tonight, my husband and I had a heart to heart talk about how we were doing as a couple, and it provided me with the opportunity to put into words the effect this high amount of stress is having on me, emotionally.
Here is what’s going on:
I am taking two 8-week classes per semester. This keeps me at part-time status, but allows me to still move forward with getting my BSN. If I continue thru the next 2 summers, I will finish about the time that David will start PA school (assuming our plans of him getting in on the first try are in line with the Lord’s). Honestly, I’m tired. I have been in school every semester, every summer save the summer Cole was born since David and I have been married. I want a break. I want to be done!
Work. I’m so tired of the stress, never getting help when I desperately need it, the attitudes, the wacky sleep schedule that makes me feel old. If I don’t hear anything from my transfer requests by the next schedule, I am asking my manager to put me back on days. Anyone who knows me well knows how much I hate waking up before the sun. Yet here I am, ready to give up my “quiet, relaxed” night shift for the craziness of days, all because 1) I will be on about the same shift as David, 2) if they split my shifts, I won’t lose 2 additional days to recover/sleep, and 3) I want to be a part of a team that encourages, helps, and uplifts one another.
There is one solution to my work-related stress, and that is to just stop working. We won’t be pinching pennies if we go down to one income. But, it’s a two-fold answer. 1) When David goes to PA school, I will be supporting our family for 2 years. For me to do that, I need to be marketable so we can move our family as needed. In short, I need the experience. 2) Ever heard of Dave Ramsey? Look him up. We have been following his principles since David introduced me to him via Total Money Makover as my Christmas 2010 present. Our goal is for David to start PA school without any lingering student loans. But, that means I work what I can so that we use the majority of one of our paychecks to go towards our debt snowball.
In addition to my school and work, I also have wife and mommy responsibilities, which include meal planning/prep, laundry, house cleaning, and shopping (as needed). Throw in a very active, everything-in-the-mouth 10month old in cloth diapers who naps only 1 1/2 hrs/day, and I’m one tired momma by 8pm! But wait, either the school that gave way to the house cleaning earlier in the day still needs to be done, or vise versa. 😦 Needless to say, when bedtime comes, all I want is to be still. I don’t want to be touched, I don’t want to talk, I just want to curl up with Squishy Pillow and escape in blissful sleep.
Though I have a loving, adoring hubby, I feel that I can’t always rely on his help. He works all day long (pulling overtime/on-call every week), then he comes home and has a crap-ton of chemistry homework to do. When I’m home (aka not working), we eat dinner together, then do family worship just before putting Cole down for bedtime, then it’s dinner clean up followed by homework for the both of us. We rarely have a full weekend together because either he is on call, he has Chemistry class all day on Saturday, or I’m working.
So yes, I’m burnt out. I know this is a tunnel, a valley of darkness; but, I don’t see the hope at the end of the tunnel. I look out and see 3 more years of the current state of affairs. I’m a candle, burning at both ends.
I was reminded this Sunday that as children of a loving God, we are called to cast our cares upon Jesus. This is something I have sorely neglected, and have been trying to do the past few days.
So, something’s got to give. David reminded me tonight tonight that he has another big test he needs to accomplish this month. He just took, and passed, his IR Registry – Woohoo!!! He still has to take the GRE so he can apply for PA school this May/June. Which means more long nights, more studying. 😥
Which brings me to my compromise: For my own mental, emotional, and physical health, I cannot continue wearing 5 different responsibilities. Since I can’t get rid of my caring, supportive husband or my goofy, lovable son, and I need to continue gaining RN experience, I’m going to temporarily set aside my student’s cap. David is trying to convince me to keep at my current class (Philosophy 101 – ugh), but I will be holding off on my summer and upcoming fall classes. Don’t get me wrong – I will get my BSN. David is expecting to not have to take any more per-requisites next year, so I will take more classes then.
Until then, I will continue to focus my energy towards providing for my family, damage-control for the house and laundry, making sure there is food to be had, and protecting my mental and emotional health by reading my Bible, praying, running, and yoga (in that order).