By the time I got home last night, my brain was just… done. I don’t even have any particular recollection of the evening, aside from a brief chat with my Traveling Partner. I crashed out a little earlier than “on time”.

I wake this morning to a gray storm-cloudy not-quite-sunrise of a dawn, after an interrupted night of otherwise deep sleep. The morning seems both very ordinary, and also a little strange, and a bit surreal. I have the peculiar subjective sense that I’m seeing things differently than usual, but can’t pin down anything obvious. A potential sign of mental fatigue requiring better rest than I’m getting. I’m not surprised, if that’s the case; I’ve been giving a bit more than all of myself at work for the past several days, working to complete a complex bit of analytical work in advance of a deadline. I haven’t been sleeping particularly well. I dream about work. I’m super glad this is the last work day in my week. I’m ready for some rest.

I pause to appreciate a small change that has developed over time; I am more aware of the rhythms of my experience. I more easily observe when poor quality sleep becomes, over time, an impediment to cognition and emotional balance. I am more likely to be aware when the pattern of my emotional “weather” changes over the course of the day, in such a way as to indicate I am more deeply fatigued than I may realize. I am more able to recognize when – and how – I need to step up my self-care, to support and nurture this fragile vessel for further lifetime’s enjoyment. It’s nice. (It took – and takes – practice, and my results vary.)

I think about a friend I know is suffering right now. I think about how far I’ve come, and how little certainty I felt then that my experience would change. I had no understanding that change could bring me to “now” – or that “now” could be this good. I still have some shitty moody angst-y despairing or angry or irritable, frustrated, rage-y moments. That’s what they are, too. Moments.

One moment of many.

Lately, for the past 2-3 days only, I’ve been waking feeling pretty generally content but finishing the day feeling moody, disappointed with life, frustrated, and angry without any particular cause that makes sense. It was last night, sitting quietly with my fatigue and making no point to distract myself from it, that I became re-aware that deeper, prolonged mental fatigue, tends to also coincide with that pattern of slowly losing emotional resilience over the course of the day. I am more self-aware and inclined to observe my experience without judgement these days, and it’s delightful to note that the pay-off seems, in this instance, that I will be able to avoid some unfortunate meltdown or freak out, that would ordinarily go down just at that point that I am not aware how deeply fatigued I am, at the end of some long (probably joyful and exciting) day, because instead I’ll get some damned rest this weekend. 😀

…I make a point of checking my calendar, of course… Well. Obviously, a weekend which I am counting on for rest is that rare weekend fully booked with events, errands, and tasks. LOL Shit. I sit smiling under my furrowed brown, chewing on my lip, mildly frustrated, a tad annoyed… I’m replacing the car windshield; a non-negotiable errand that needs to be done. No room for change there. An appointment with my stylist for Saturday… I could cancel a haircut and reschedule… but it’s hard to get those Saturday appointments. So. A great opportunity to point out how good self-care intentions go sadly wrong. You can say “I told you so” when I’m cross and moody on Monday morning. 😉

I won’t be running myself ragged this weekend, in any case. I’ll make a point of resting, and treating myself with care, gently, because I matter to me. Camping next weekend. My birthday the weekend after that. I suddenly feel tired before those events even get to “now”; my brain is reminding me to take getting some rest seriously. I sass myself silently with a smile and daydream about relaxing out among the trees next weekend. I’ll certainly get the rest I need then, but I know that doesn’t change how much rest I need, now. 😀

Fatigue changes the emotional weather, and the emotional landscape. Just saying. I have become more aware how important it is to get the rest I need.

Speaking of rest… it’s already time to go and do and be. One more work day – then rest.