Let’s talk stress

Processed with VSCO with c3 presetI suffer with anxiety. I get heart palpitations, have panic attacks, and even have mini breakdowns every once in a while. It is normal. I am incredibly busy. I am a mom, a wife, a student, and have a job. I get stressed and stress leads to A) UTI’s, B) panic attacks, and or C) days of heart palpitations that effect my whole body and mood.

I am going to talk a little bit about how I handle stress and manage my anxiety. I know everyone is different. I am not a doctor. If you are suffering from any or all of these things don’t take my advice! Go seek the help of someone who knows what they are doing. I am just simply talking about what works for me…most of the time.

I knit. I knit a lot because it helps me find rhythm. The click clack of needles is soothing to my soul. I get to create something and that helps me as well. As ridiculously corny as this sounds, I also like to wear my hand knits because it feels like a warm hug. I like to feel the yarn and know that I have made something beautiful.

I pray. I study. I look for things that have meaning to me in something bigger than myself. It helps me to to think outside of myself. I know some who think this is the most important thing. I know some who don’t. You do you when it comes to faith and spirituality.

I listen to my heartbeat. I bought a stethoscope a long time ago when I first started having heart palpitations. Little did I know that listening to my irregular thudding heart has a way of calming me down…slowly it returns to normal. Most of the time….sometimes it takes days. And before you ask, yes, I have seen a cardiologist, everything is fine. If I have heart palpitations I am supposed to lay down and get my heart rate under control…otherwise it can be painful and bad. I listen to my body and know when things are getting heart beat stressy and take it easy. I promise.

I walk by a river in the woods. I think that is pretty self explanatory. Nature is good.

I hug my husband. I hold his hand. I ask him for help.

Last night I fell asleep downstairs on the futon in my office, this is the case most nights. I stay up late to do homework, Brad goes to bed way early because of his work schedule. I woke up about 45 minutes after going to sleep mid full blown panic attack. I couldn’t breathe, I had tunnel vision, and I had a hard time clearing my head. This happens to me on occasion. I don’t know what caused it. I don’t know why they happen. It is scary. Normally when I am awake and feel a panic attack coming I can cope with it one of the ways I have shared, but when an attack hits me while I am sleeping I can’t preemptively stop it, or make it less. These nocturnal panic attacks are bad. They take a lot out of me. They take me a while to recover from.

Today I am being gentle with myself, I am drinking water, and making sure I eat good food. I did homework and crossed things off my to do list. I will hug my family, pray, and won’t push myself to do extra today. I will knit and talk and hold Brad’s hand. I know I am far from alone. I know I am normal.

Back to School & Socks

Grad school is in full swing. If you know me you know that school means I spend many hours in my homework hole stressing over formulas, essays, and deadlines. You also know that I knit so the stress in my life doesn’t overwhelm me. In other words, I knit so I don’t kill people! I don’t just knit anything, I knit really, really simple things. Enter socks. Socks are very simple and satisfying. I also knit dishcloths because they take less than an hour to complete and sometimes I need to just finish all the things!

I know some of you will ask what pattern I use for socks. I don’t really use one pattern, I combine a few patterns and different techniques to make my go to stress reliever socks. My over all pattern is based on Orange Knits Rose City Rollers. I like to knit toe up though so first, I start with a Turkish Cast On, I increase for a toe, knit until I have the length of my footthen add an afterthought heel where it should go. I am not at all careful, I don’t measure really, and I don’t care if my socks match. Life is too short to worry about such things. I know all you serious sock knitters are cringing…but I don’t care. Socks are stuffed into shoes and most people don’t look at feet that closely. And if they do look and judge my hand knit socks, I probably don’t want to be their friend anyway!

On a side note, I magic loop and use size 2 ChiaoGoo Needles I knit the middle size of the rose city rollers pattern, and I am a size 9 shoe. Also, I will knit anywhere…even at a brew pub or park. Please don’t ask me what yarn this is…I’ve had it for years, I didn’t buy it, and I can’t even begin to tell you what it is. If you want some great sock yarn head to my favorite yarn shop, Cozy, and pick out whatever speaks to your heart. 

OK…so back to school, I am taking a full class schedule of 500 level classes. I love, love, love learning. As much as I complain about being busy and stressed, I really do love learning about the economy and how things work. It is fascinating to me to learn about how and why things are the way they are in the business world. I like the black and white of number crunching and the integration of faith and ethics into a money driven economy. The way faith is integrated in the most unlikely of subjects is incredibly enjoyable to me. Yes, I am a number crunching, economy studying, bible nerd and I don’t even care.


List, List Baby

I have one of those crazy schedules that includes kids, homework, work, home, and a whole slew of different things. I try hard to not drop the ball on any one thing, but every once in a while I forget something.

In the past I have covered my laptop with checklists, tasks, meal plans, and schedules of varying types. This school year though I am determined to keep myself a little more organized without jumbling everything all up!

I’ve made a few different types of checklists and will try them out over the next few weeks to see which works best for me…it will no doubt change when kids go back to school and CATS starts back up in the fall. Click here for all of the different check lists 


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Where to begin…

The beginning I suppose. I feel like I need a place to write down my thoughts on grad school, motherhood, faith, and hobbies. So I guess this is as good of a place as any.

My semester started today and there is no warm up period, it is dive into papers and mountains of reading and lectures. I guess I don’t really need a warm up week I am accustomed to the work load my teachers are handing out. The work so far is about typical of what I have been doing for the past year or so. My only complaint, which I can’t really complain about, is our textbooks, which are included in tuition, are all ebooks, I am not a fan of reading hundreds of pages a week on a kindle. My eyes get so strained and that sets off migraines. I am going to try to use the nightshade feature as much as possible to counteract the amount of screen time I must do just to get my reading done.

The kids start school next week. Emily is super excited to get back to her friends and a normal routine. She isn’t stoked about math, but other than that she is happy to be back! Ellie is a ball of nerves. Who wouldn’t be, she is starting middle school and is worried about everything that entails. Truth be told, I am nervous for her too. She is so smart and will do well…it is just my job to worry as a mother.

I am slowly chugging away at my Beekeeper Cardigan. I am on the bottom button band, just have sleeves, a collar, and side bands to knit…so I guess I am about half way done. I was really hoping to get it done in time for fall weather, but I don’t know if I am going to make it!