Encouragement for Homeschooling Mothers - Exhausted

Friday, August 9, 2013

Coming soon...

This post is most applicable today as I sit here trying desperately to put words on this page when my head is sailing in a haze of tiredness (self induced by a too-late caffeine drink yesterday afternoon). Although I wouldn't say I am exhausted in the true sense, it is so very hard to function even when extremely tired.

(Took a break...educated children....fed lambs....had a coffee....can function again :)

 Exhaustion is common to every human being no matter what their stage in life is.  At some point we regularly feel tired, sometimes to the point of complete exhaustion.  There is however varying levels of exhaustion & only you yourself knows your own body & how you are truly feeling. Never, ever discount how you feel.
There are some really obvious seasons in a homeschooling mother's life where exhaustion seems so very prevalent ~ when a new baby comes along, when a life change is made ( such as moving house) & when she is planning for the upcoming school year during the wee hours of the morning ( I haven't met a homeschooling mother yet who hasn't done this at some point).  I think we would love to all feel peppy & full of life constantly, but in truth by Friday we are often the ones dragging our feet more than the children!

My Journey
Although commonly tired at times due to irregular sleeping habits at various times in my life, I had never truly felt exhausted until we moved here to the farm in 2008.  At first I was convinced it was the change in climate.  However it got to a point where I really struggled with how to function properly.  Eventually Dave talked me into going to the doctor who ran a ream of tests & told me at some point I'd had glandular fever, I had possibly had a miscarriage (which I am firmly convinced hadn't happened as I had absolutely no signs of pregnancy) & then saying it was normal for mothers of four to be tired sometimes (I am so glad I payed for that visit ~ not).  I continued just living with the exhaustion.  It was something I would fight against & it seemed no matter how much sleep I got it would constantly be there. Forever lingering in the background of my already too busy life waiting to overtake me at the most inopportune times. 
Last July after a horrible illness I had to make some major changes to my diet.  Eventually I worked out it was the gluten in my diet causing the stomach issues (I should have guessed with two sisters with the same thing).  I quickly commenced a gluten free diet.  Almost as soon as I changed my diet, the exhaustion that had plagued me for all those years disappeared!  It has been wonderful to have energy again!! What a blessing to feel normal again & not have to drag myself around!

Things that may help with your exhaustion:

We are all different with varying factors causing our tiredness &/or exhaustion.  It is important to regularly assess every area of our lives to make sure we are remaining healthy & being good stewards of this body the Lord has given us! 

1. Diet
As I wrote above, this was a huge factor for me.  I'm not sure why removing gluten has allowed me to regain my energy, but I'm sure happy I found this out!

2. Sleep Habits
Probably the most obvious, but if we are constantly changing our sleep habits or not getting enough sleep we are going to eventually end up with health issues. Some people require more sleep than others so get to know your body & what is best for you.

3. Exercise
I love how exercise helps out in so many areas of your life.  Naturally mothers often get a whole lot of exercise, but it's always nice to feel as if you have exercised on purpose.  It sounds wrong to think that exercising reduces tiredness, but it surely does.  
Recently I've started doing a quick 10 minute work out each weekday morning when I get dressed.  I knew I couldn't fit more into my day, but a short 10 minutes seemed doable!  I use the ones off Youtube by a Christian lady from Revelation Wellness & are found HERE.  ( I use the regular ones, but I notice she does some less intensive if those are too much).  I have loved the endorphin packed energy I've had daily after doing these.  Definitely a worthwhile 10 minutes!

4. Use your creativity
I know it sounds strange, but sometimes it is more mental exhaustion than physical exhaustion that is plaguing us mothers.  Using our creativity may alleviate this.  Simply using a less-used part of our brain can increase your happiness!

5. Ask for help
If you are in the stage of life where you have lots of little ones you are likely to be exhausted.  If at all possible seek help from family or friends.  Finding some support, even just for a few hours a week may be the very catalyst that breaks through your tiredness & makes life liveable again ( & if you need help holding babies or playing with little ones  just call me :)!!

It feels like just yesterday!!!

Dear Mother
Please don't sit there exhausted & think that life has to continue in this way. Seek ways to find the root of your tiredness.  Work out if it is a physical exhaustion or a mental exhaustion.  Try to find ways of changing what you do to give yourself a small break.  I know it's hard, but as mothers we are the heart of the home & when the mother is unable to function properly, the home falls apart! Embrace your God-given role of mother as a calling from Him & do all you can to complete it to the best of your ability.  This begins with looking after yourself!


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