It's 12:41am and I am wide awake.
I was so tired this afternoon, after working last night and not sleeping enough when I got home before Conor had to be picked up from school. (Tuesdays are early-out days, grrrr.) I went to bed at 8:30pm and only woke up to use the bathroom, but that was enough for the Second Wind to hit. My days and nights are all mixed up. I just ate a slice of pizza, answered some emails, and figured a blog post would be nice. I used to never, ever (past the years of nursing babies, that is) see the wee hours of the night time. Now, I know them well.
I actually love working the night shift. I begin at 6:30pm, as the day nurses wrap up and head home to their families. Mine has been fed dinner and left with last-minute instructions for finishing up homework, chores, and preparing for bedtime.
I love that I drive to work in the opposite direction as traffic. I love that the parking is free for the night shift. I love that most of the doctors go home (at least until we have to call them back for delivery) and things calm down somewhat. I love the stillness outside that surrounds the work of birthing inside. I love that my children are at home sleeping, and that I'm not missing the activities of their days. And I really love the nurses I work with.
Having never been a night person before, all of these discoveries have come as a surprise. In fact, I was even offered a position on the day shift, and I turned it down. Managing my sleep has been the only challenge. I actually schedule it in my planner! But really, I'm doing okay.
So, now it's 12:50am and I'm thinking of things that need to get done this week in between my working and sleeping:
1. Take Aiden's GPA/Gifted identification paperwork down to the high school he's wanting to get into. (We'll see how that whole thing will work, since it's now a charter and there is no bussing. . . and early morning Seminary is non-negotiable. But for now, we at least do the preparatory steps to see if it's even an option.)
2. Clean my bathroom. Holy. Heavens.
3. Mop the kitchen floor.
4. Dust everything everywhere.
5. Make baked goods in exchange for the work a friend in my ward did sewing all the patches onto Aiden's new Scout uniform.
6. Conor needs a doctor's appointment for a bladder issue he's been having.
7. Taxes need to be done for Lyndsay, Aiden, and me. And then FAFSAs updated.
8. Practice a musical number I'll be singing at a little girl's baptism this weekend.
9. Catch up in my journal. (Ha! Catching up! At least write something.)
10. Prepare for the new songs I have to teach in Primary.
11. Choose recital pieces for my piano students (oh, yeah, I'm still teaching piano!) and get the date and location for that recital nailed down.
The list could go on, but these are the most pressing items. I have books I haven't been able to spend much time reading. I haven't even started my garden, and truthfully, I've even thought about letting it go this season. I have so much to deep clean, declutter, and organize. Projects I'd like to start, or finish. And every day people want to eat. You know how it is. Balancing one's time is one of the great challenges of this life. Lately I'm not sure I've been terrific about it, but what I have been getting better at is allowing myself some grace, for doing the best I can right at this moment, in this season of transition and learning in my life.
My nights used to only be for sleeping, but now I have all kinds of new experiences. Last night I delivered a baby boy and prayed while we worked on him for over three minutes that he'd take his first breath, and later, I sat with a couple I'd come to know over the last week, whose baby was born unexpectedly and will pass away within a few days from a condition they didn't know she had. I marvel that these experiences are mine.
Sometimes, when sleep is difficult to find, I lie in bed and pray. I go through my day with my Heavenly Father and thank Him for bringing me here, allowing me these privileges, and then I ask Him for help with all of the things that I'm struggling with. I pray for each of my children, at length. I ask for clarity and wisdom. And sometimes, I just ask for sleep. Which, though never in excess (like I sometimes wish for), comes according to my needs, like every other blessing.
Now, it is 1:11am. My alarm will go off at 5:30, so I guess it's time to try again.