Monday, October 09, 2006

Sleeping with Bread Monday with Friends and Frustration

In the last week, for what am I most grateful?

It is 6:40 a.m. I am bleary-eyed. Right now I can hardly recall the last week, much less what in it makes me grateful. Normally, I wouldn't try to do this post so early but I have to work in Marley's class today.

Wake up Mary. For what are you most grateful this week?




Okay. At the risk of sounding repetitive, I am most grateful for friends and my church family.
  1. I got to sit down with one last night over dinner and coffee and have a nice, long chat about life with kids, the universe of a busy mom with kids, and everything else you might imagine.
  2. I had another friend from church check in with me after reading about the Marley exploits this week. She asked how I was doing and made sympathetic noises.
  3. A good friend called to catch up. As usual, life interrupted us before we were finished talking. We did get in nearly an hour on the phone before that happened. An hour! How great is that?
  4. My sister-in-law (and good friend) called to check in on me after I missed a meeting with the graduate advisor. She had a meeting scheduled for the next hour. Both of us having the same last name, the advisor asked about me. Of course, I was fine. I had just forgotten about the meeting because of all the royal antics that morning.
Ne'er a week goes by that I don't have some meaningful connection with my friends and church family and for that, I am grateful.

In the last week, for what am I least grateful?

The sleepiness affects me here, too. Only, instead of making it hard to think of something, it makes it too easy to come up with a list of complaints. I don't want to do that. Let's see... I think in the last week, I am least grateful for myself. In looking over my personality profile recently, I recognize certain characteristics that I don't like right now about being an ENFP, including but not limited to:

  1. serious mistakes in judgment deriving from a tendency to focus on data which confirm their own biases
  2. being hypersensitive and hyperalert, thus a tendency towards muscle tension
  3. sometimes being too impatient with others
  4. becoming restless with painstaking detail and follow-through
  5. not always being interested in saving for the future
  6. and as mentioned in a previous post, being somewhat unpredictable as a parent, shifting from a role of friend-in-need rescuer to stern authority figure.***

The last one is the one that has been really bothering me lately. Who wants that parent? Does it matter how devoted you are if your kids never know which parent is going to "show up" on a particular day, hour or moment? I am trying to be productive with this problem. But of course, because I am an ENFP, I am apt to "heap burning coals of fire on [myself,] always berating [myself] for being so conscious of self."

Part of the purpose of Sleeping with Bread is to learn to take the things which cause you desolation and turn them into consolations. I hope this week that I will be able to take the sides of my personality that are bothering me now and turn them around... as long as it doesn't take too much painstaking detail and follow-through! (Wink. Wink.)

Also Sleeping with Bread today:

chickenone of ky coop cast: The Good and the Not So Good
Sheila of musings of a mommy: Sleeping with Bread Monday
atypical of nonsensical text: crackers may be humble bread, but they still qualify
Beatrice of Much Ado About Nothing joined us for the first time this week.

Upon further reflection: It is now much later in the day. Having re-read through this post, I would like to clarify that some of the dreariness is a result of the early morning hour that I was writing it, not the actual degree of "bad week." At the best of times, I am not a morning person, so in attempting to get the post in before leaving for the morning, I was not thinking all that clearly.

***From Please Understand Me by David Keirsey and Marilyn Bates. I didn't using quotation marks for most of the bullet points because I didn't use exact quotes, just semi-exact quotes and I was too tired to punctuate it correctly.


Sheila said...

Hey Mary, I did some modified SwB today over at my musings :)

ECR said...

Hmmm, this reminds me that I should go back and assess my own personality (ENTP) as it relates to parenting. Last I took the test, it was at work. Somehow, I think it would give me a lot more to think about now.

atypical said...

I was just reminded of how strong the similarities are between NFs. My husband also fluctuates with his I/E and P/J, so you remind me not only of me, but of him.

I hope you end up just plain sleeping more! I hate that you have to deal with the ugly apnea monster. I know tiredness makes everything harder.

By the way, I think your kids are fortunate to have you as their mama!


P.S. I slept with bread as well.

Mary-LUE said...

atypical - My sleepiness this morning was partly due to the fact that I am not a morning person. Even before sleep apnea, I was never an early riser. I do feel better overall now that I have been doing the CPAP therapy for a little while. 7:30 would have been a much nicer wake up time! ;)

atypical said...

Bah to 7:30! We night owls need to sleep as late as we darn well please! Don't these morning people in our lives realize the world revolves around us? ;)

I hope you get to sleep later tomorrow!

-the night owl

Terri B. said...

Mary, I'm assuming you don't do "Morning Pages"? I tried writing those morning pages as was suggested in The Artist's Way. I had to switch to some-other-time-of-day pages since I am not a morning person either. Those written in the morning were the sorriest pages I ever wrote. I don't wake up in a good mood (since I'm not a morning person) and really have nothing to say (nothing has happened yet) unless it's something about "having to write these blankity blank pages." Evening pages work so much better for me. I feel your morning pain!

Mary-LUE said...

Terri, Definitely NO morning pages. I did try that years ago and even if I could write at that hour, I can barely get myself up in time to get everyone else where they need to go. I have the perfect journal to do an after-everyone-is-out-of-the-house pages. I should do that.

bubandpie said...

Who wants a mother like that? I bet your kids do! With any personality, you have to take the good with the bad - with my INFJ mom, for instance, there was the bad (no fun crafts, no homemade Halloween costumes), and the good (an ever-open listening ear, bottomless empathy). It balances out in my favour, I think.

Kristen said...

I think Bub and Pie is right - the varying aspects of yourself that you show your kids are good for them - we all have different "sides" to ourselves, it's how we deal with that and how we show love to our families that ultimately matters the most, and clearly this is a priority for you. Your kids are lucky to have you!!

Mary-LUE said...

Thanks for the encouragement as far as my parenting goes! I can definitely look at certain aspects of my parenting and know that I make some good choices. I think my concern is the rapidity with which I sometimes go from patient mom to fascist (my son's term.) Also, that friend-in-need rescuer thing. I want to make sure that before I am their "friend," I am their mom.

Oh well, as I am sure any of us with kids would recognize, we all have room for improvement. I believe Bub just recently mentined a prayer where she asked for love, joy, peace, and patience. I would add to that the rest of the fruit of the Spirit... kindness, goodness, gentleness, self-control (Galations 5:22.) It is a tall order, isn't it?

I do hope that as my children get older, they will appreciate what I have to offer in spite of my shortcomings. And, my most fervent prayer is that I won't be content within my shortcomings but that I will continue to strive to be a better parent, day by day and moment by moment.