Just Exhausted

For the last few years especially, I find myself getting more and more tired throughout my day. I don’t mean the normal end of the day tired we are all supposed to feel to signal us that bedtime is near; but rather a straight outta bed, didn’t sleep worth a hoot, it’s only 10 a.m. and I want to crawl under my desk and take a nap kind of tired. I have a friend who brought this to my attention the other day when we were talking and she said, “If I had a dollar for every time you used the word, ‘exhausted’!” She’s right. I’ll bet I say it 10 times a week.

If you are my mother, the first thing you’ll think is- you really should go see a doctor. Have your thyroid checked. Did that. All kinds of blood work. Everything good in the medical department.

You may then think I should go to bed earlier. Did that. It matters not if my bedtime is 11 p.m., or if it’s 8 p.m. Same thing, sleepless nights. It’s become commonplace that I’ll wake sometime around 3 a.m. then have to spend another hour falling back to sleep. It’s so frustrating. 

I’m hearing lately that this same situation is happening with the majority of my friends. So, I’ve really stopped to think about the “why” in all of this. Why are we all so spent, and burnt out before our day has ended? I realize I’m getting older (46 now), but surely my brain/body should be able to make it a full 16 hours of awake time without me wanting to find random closets to sneak into and create a makeshift pallet for a quick snooze.

My answer came when talking to a friend’s husband last night. He was talking to me (with her present) about how he feels their marriage is suffering, because there is so little quality time they get to spend as husband and wife- just having some sweet “courting” moments. He said, “By the end of the day when we are finally home from work, there’s still work to do around the house or errands to run.” Then he said my word, “We are just EXHAUSTED.” Seems the whole world is. 

It’s understandable that most of us may feel exhausted during our day. Life isn’t always easy. We are making decisions from the moment our feet hit the floor in the morning. We start with simply deciding to get up, deciding what we will wear to work/school/for the day, then we decide what we are feeding everyone before all head out the door. If you work, your day is full of more decision making. Our brains have to be in the “on” position, so we can do the best work we possibly can. Situations at work rise up which are beyond our control, and this can often times add extra pressure to our day. If you’re a stay at home mom, as I was for many years, the decision making and the problem solving doesn’t seem to ever stop. I’d rank being a stay at home mom as more physically and mentally taxing that any other job I’ve ever had. Caring for your children is an exceptional task when done correctly. By that, I mean it’s much more than plopping a kid down in front of a tv, and handing them a box of Pop Tarts. So, whether working a job away from home or at home, we all have tremendous demand placed on us daily.

And friends, we’ve not even touched on the daily external pressure we have from the great big world out there. There are financial issues we deal with daily. Some moreso than others. Speaking as a person with firsthand knowledge of this subject, this topic alone can be enough to set your brain into overdrive and panic. There are world events that we get bombarded with every day. A war here, a flood there, and this blasted election. All of these news reports, television shows, newspapers, and online information can literally overwhelm our systems, not to mention what it does for our morale. 

We have relationship issues. It may be with a spouse, a significant other, your parents, your children, your friends, or your coworkers. In bumpy relationship times, these circumstances just keep adding to our already very stressed out and overly full plates. 

I’m sure I’ve not covered all possible scenarios, but I’m trying to paint a picture for you that it’s no wonder that some (most) of us feel tired and mentally/physically taxed.

Well, I’m not one to sit by and “woah is me”myself into the ground, so I’m coming up with a plan. My first plan is this, I’m going to have to except that life isn’t always going to be a smooth ride. Some fortunate people in this life just seem to have an easier time than others. I used to question why in a world of people whose lives seem to go so perfectly (at least from outward appearances), why mine always seemed to be one that had many twists and turns. I questioned myself, and my relationship with God. Was I being punished for something? Was this just my fate in life? Then it occurred to me, most of the major players from the Bible were people who had trials and tribulations in their lives. David didn’t have an easy road, but look at what God did through him. Look at Noah, Abraham, the disciples, heck, start all the way at the beginning with Adam. Each of them were challenged and went on through faith to accomplish things beyond their wildest imaginations. I personally believe that if God has big plans for you in this lifetime, Satan is going to come at you with everything he’s got to derail those plans. I also know that where we end up in life is a result of choices we make. Very little drives me crazier than an adult who wants to sit and “poor me” about life, and has no intention of doing anything to improve their situation. As a matter of fact, it bothers me so much that this topic only gets two sentences from me.

My second plan is to take these sleepless moments during my nighttime, and start talking to God during them. We all have different relationships with God. I have cultivated during the years, through much prayer, a relationship where I speak with Him just as if He were sitting on the couch beside me. Don’t be afraid of prayer. It is simply our way of communicating with the Father. Your words don’t have to be flowery and rhyming when talking to Him. Make it conversational. I have a running dialogue with Jesus throughout my day. It just stops and starts whenever it needs to. 

Several years ago, I had a friend who became extremely ill very suddenly. I had such a burden for her. For a solid week, I was awoken every night at 3 for an “inexplicable” reason. Well, I quickly realized that I needed to pay attention to these quiet signals. I felt as if God was wanting to tell me something. I listened. The next night this happened, I just sat right up and said, “Okay, God, I’m listening, tell me what I need to hear.” The craziest thing?…. He DID! It was out of these late night chats with Him that a country-wide prayer group was formed, which has now grown into Church Without Walls on Facebook. Out of these chats, and the obedience of hundreds of people, I got to witness firsthand God do a miracle in her life, and pull her up from near-certain death. Another perk for me which came from this- from just obeying- I had a covering of the Holy Spirit in my life that I can hardly put into words. I felt a closeness with Him that’s I’d never experienced… maybe since when I became a new Christian. It felt like Jesus had dumped a bucket of the Holy Spirit over me, and I was drenched in it. I’ve never known a peace or a fulfillment like that. I, for that time, was waking in obedience in the fullness of what God had for me, and it was other-worldly. I’m sure there is no fix, or drug, or any other vice which could have come close to a fraction of the unbridled joy I felt during this time. So, talk to Him when you can’t sleep. You have to take that a step further, though. You have to prepare yourself for whatever task it is that He may set before you. Sometimes I think He asks things of us just to see if we will obey. Let’s be up to that challenge. 

Finally, my last plan is to prioritize those things which must be done immediately, and recognize those things which can wait. We, as humans, can’t do it all in one day. We can’t fix everything, buy everything, be everywhere, attend everything, and complete every task in one day. When we try is when we end up like a character from “The Walking Dead”, and then ask the question why life is so hard. There’s an expression that says, “We make time for what is important.” I’m a firm believer in this statement. You can’t put your human relationships on the back burner because you’re so busy, and then be surprised when these relationships start to deteriorate. You can’t spend every moment of your day taking care of the rest of the world, but not carve out a little time to take care of yourself. I think that’s what most of us are guilty of doing.

I want to offer encouragement today. Let’s take the time to make a conscious choice to slow down a little today, take some time to take care of ourselves, and most importantly, make ourselves still enough that we can be obedient and listen to that often quiet voice of God, and find out what He’s trying to say to each of us. 

Blessing to you. 


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Judy Kirkpatrick
    Oct 13, 2016 @ 11:02:12

    Amanda, I understand exactly where you are coming from! You have been such a big influence and witness to so many people that you will never even know! You are a gifted writer, as your mom is. I look so forward to these blogs of yours. and I wish you could earn a living just doing this. All we can do is depend on the Lord, and allow Him to lead us where He wants us to be. I fail every day doing this, but I know He loves us and cares always, no matter what we do. It is so good to have you back on here. In those early morning hours, (mine is usually 3:30 or 4 am) I do a lot of praying and listening. But, I do have the luxury of going home, sitting in my chair, and dozing through the news!! You, on the other hand, have two wonderful children to keep you busy all night! I pray that God gives you rest, because you have surely given lots of us peace and joy from your sharing all these years!



    • mandaclair
      Oct 13, 2016 @ 11:05:56

      Judy, this made my day! Thank you so much, sweet lady. I fail so often, but I do want to be a witness for Him. What else is more important, really? Wow, and I’d love nothing more than to work as an author. I love teaching too, but would be great to write on the side. Thank you for your kind words. I’ll pray for you to have rest, too. Love you!



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