Saturday, May 15, 2010

Help! I Can't Turn Off my Mind! Part Deux...

Obviously, I am an introspective person, I am always somewhere in my head no matter what is going on.  If a problem arises, or if I get one of my fantastic ideas, my brain starts clicking away trying to figure it ALL out at once.  Before I know it I am wired and uptight and those forty-winks become more and more elusive.

So I got to thinking. I started to think about why I think too much. I think I finally figured it out.  So here goes...I think... alot...Period. CJ is a thinker. Not to be compared with Socrates or Bono of course.  But thinking is what I do, and starting today - I am ok with it.

But I must sleep. To start my day off positively, I must feel rested, peaceful and inspired. (At least long enough to get Noelle her bath and the boys off to school). The truth is that my nightly thoughts were none of  those things.  There was no rest, no peace, no inspiration.   The evening ritual that played out in my head was ridden with negativity, discouragement and fear.  It was insane to think that I could sleep with all of that anxiety racing around in my brain, building up night after night. 

My initial goal was to just turn it all off.  To figure out some great formula that would allow it all to stop and SNAP me into sleep wonderland.  But I can't turn who I am off - so I had to find another way.  It finally occurred to me that I can't stop myself from thinking - but I can control WHAT I think about. When I put my head down , before the whirlwind of thoughts start to whip up, I pause and remember that life has been good to me.   When all the problems, to do lists and self criticisms start forming, I very consciously start thinking about how grateful I am.

The truth is that I am incredibly grateful for this wonderful life.  I am amazed at how far I have come both emotionally and spiritually. I am grateful because my life could have turned out differently.  But here I am, after a lifelong struggle with depression, after being broke, after losing a baby, losing a house, losing friends - after finding that my son is the poster child for ADHD, after the meds, the tears and the insanity of it all - I am strangely the happiest and most content I have ever been.  I just have to remember the truth of my life - which is - it's still good.

I promised I would share when I found a solution. 

Remember that your life is still good and be grateful.  And if you can't think of one thing to be grateful for (trust me - I have been there too),  focus on your breath. If you are still breathing that means you have the chance to figure it out tomorrow.

Good sleep to you all!

Photo Courtesy of Salvatore Vuono


  1. Hi CJ,
    I just found your blog through MBC. Anyway, you write so beautifully and honestly. I lost my mom almost a year ago (obviously no comparison), so I understand how cathartic it can be to get some of this stuff out. And, incidentally, you and I seem to worry about a lot of the same crap! Take care.

  2. Thanks Sunny.
    I am now following your blog. I think you are funny and honest. I lost my dad when I was 17 and as you know a daughter three years ago. And I thought about your saying (no comparison)...I think its just different. I can't explain it, but trust me I will be thinking about it all night (SMILE) and I may blog about it soon. Thanks for the inspiration.


  3. Beautiful! This is my method too. I too have struggled with depression, and my father lost his battle with it when I was 13. But now, even when I'm overtired and aggrivated and done in, I'm able to view the world in a way I never used to be able to. I'm extremely grateful for just how lucky I am to be able to see it that way. So much of it is perception - and that's one of the few things we can control. Just love you and your blog, CJ.

    parenting ad absurdum (I think i've told you my login is connected to an old blog - too non-techie to figure it out...)

  4. Thanks! I commented on your blog today! I am sorry to hear about your dad. My own Dad passed when I was 17. Life is so, sooo fragile. It's so true, the only world we can control is the internal one...thanks for the words. LOVE your blog as well...