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The top picture represents my daily life as a mother and wife, and the bottom shows how I’m really feeling these days.

I’ve been experiencing some health issues for a while now that I’ve been ignoring. I’ve been too busy worrying about my kids and my husband that I put myself on the back burner. I’ve been running around here, there, and everywhere nonstop, all while working full time and managing Wife Diaries. I’ve even scheduled doctor appointments only to reschedule them because of some conflict. I pushed myself to be super mom when I knew I needed rest. The thought of taking some time to relax and unplug stressed me out because I felt like I had too many people depending on me to rest, and I need to be present and available at all times. I wasn’t listening to my body.

Yesterday, I finally made it to see my doctor. He ran tests and checked my symptoms and asked, “Are you getting any rest? Is there anything that you can think of that may be stressing you? What’s a typical week like for you?” I then went into how I live this great life with a wonderful husband and 3 fabulous children and how I balance their busy schedules with my own, not even realizing that any of it could be a factor in my health. I honestly thought that, my schedule being a factor, was bizarre because I’m extroverted and I enjoy being busy. But I knew that my symptoms weren’t normal and that something was wrong.

I was in the hospital all afternoon with my parents by my bedside, and my husband worried sick thousands of miles away on FaceTime. The doctors were telling me to relax as they ran tests; but all I could think about was that I needed to be discharged in time to make it to my babies camp closing program and to take my eldest daughter to dance. Crazy right! I made a comment about it, and mother told me to basically not worry about any of that, and that the kids will be fine.

After I was discharged and given my followup information, I was relieved because I was able to jump back into being “super mom”. I made it to my babies performance and my daughter made it to her rehearsal. But I was still feeling the same way I felt when I started this whole process.

As I sit here and type, waiting to be seen by the doctor again, I am no longer in denial. I didn’t want to believe that something as simple as stress could sit me down. I guess because I viewed my stress as “good” stress. Of course my life isn’t perfect, but I surely didn’t think that the busyness of it would make me sick.

You know that saying “stress can kill you”? Yeah, I’ve never paid any attention to it either, but now I understand. Everyone needs rest and relaxation. Unplugging is necessary for your health. It’s ok to utilize your village to help run your errands for the kids, even if you are simply taking a nap. And the big one, you don’t have to attend EVERY event. Constantly ripping and running will wear you out and can be damaging.

I’m no expert, and it’s going to probably take me a second to practice to my own advice; but I am someone who is currently experiencing the side effects of stress, and it’s not fun at all. Listen to your body. Slow down and take care of yourself; because if you don’t, you won’t be able take care of anyone else. #WifeDiaries

Written By: Shanaè M. Johnson

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