Is Exhaustion an Excuse?

There are days when the alarm goes off and I simply don’t want to get out of bed.

Generally speaking, when this happens, I give myself a good talking to, a swift kick up the backside and get up regardless.

Last Thursday, I had woken at 3am with a pounding headache. For some reason, I can’t take ibuprofen anymore, especially on an empty stomach, so I’m only left with paracetamol, which is frankly useless.

I took some anyway, glugged down a heap of water (just in case I was dehydrated) and tried to get back to sleep.

That didn’t work on account of the paracetamol (useless) and the water (which once in must at some point come out).

Whilst journeying to and from the loo was helpful in getting a head start on my steps for the next day, it did not help me rest.

By the time my alarm went off, I had maybe got three hours sleep in total and I still had a headache.

So I made the decision to stay in bed.

The day before had shown my first actual proper weightless since losing all I’d put on whilst on holiday. I was delighted! Two more pounds and I’d lost two stone and reached one of my goals for June.

You’d think that would have been enough to motivate me to get up.

But it wasn’t.

And in fact, I (very unusually) spent the whole day in bed watching Hell’s Kitchen.

I felt horrible.

By the end of the day, I’d achieved very little, munched my way through a bar of chocolate and a Diet Coke and had texted Gary asking him to buy some more rubbish to eat on his way home.

This was not my finest moment.

Yes, the girls had done most of their school work, simply because a lot of it is independent now, but that was not really the point.

I felt even yuckier as I contemplated my own laziness and, dare I say it, self-sabotage.

Sometimes, though, when you are down and out, it gives you a chance to reflect on your down and outness.

I pondered whether if I had, in fact, bothered to drag myself out of bed and gone for my hour long walk would my headache have disappeared on its own?

By choosing to lie in, I’d needed to send my girls to the shops for oat milk and a loaf of bread, both of which I make from scratch each day when I get back from my walk. I’d also not managed to put on a load of washing (which I do before I walk) and hang it out on the line (which I do when I get back from the walk). Nor had I done my bathroom chores, which is my contribution to the household chores each day.

Laziness begot laziness. Maybe this is harsh. After all, I do not do this very often, in fact it was the first time this year. But nevertheless…

The consequences were far greater than just sleeping (or not) through my alarm.

When I do the first thing in my routine for the day, I am almost guaranteed to do the second, third….hundredth thing…so that when nighttime comes I am tired and fulfilled with the day’s tasks. I can go to bed, satisfied, knowing I have fulfilled my duties.

That night, I was not tired. I was grumpy and very down on myself (which, by the way, I thoroughly deserved!). I had not been a useful person and I had not adulted very well at all.

I am very blessed by a husband who does not focus on my failures. He brought me back the rubbish I asked for, which I ate and then felt thoroughly ashamed of myself. Again.

Gary, however, seeing my need for perhaps a change in scenery, spent the next day (which he had off) taking me out to breakfast, a garden centre, then picking up the girls to go out for lunch and to another garden centre…

By Friday evening I was feeling much more myself. I’d bought myself a couple of indoor plants, which will probably live for the next forty-eight hours and wither and die under my care.

Saturday, I spent the day going through our bedroom, and organising the (soon-to-be-dead) plants on my windowsill, happy as anything.

I guess sometimes laziness isn’t just laziness.

I think I needed that day off, and Gary’s loving care the next day.

However, I will not be staying in bed the next time I want to turn off my alarm. Because the fact is, getting up and out of bed on time is the first item in a chain of items which make my days excellent. Staying in bed is not worth what I give up in order to do so.

Soooo….to prevent this happening again, we have removed the television from the bedroom and I now lay my phone with the alarm on top of my chest of drawers. Away from the bed. Which means I have to get out of bed to turn it off. And once up, I’ll be happy to simply do the next thing.

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