When does the burden lift? I am so exhausted!


Life has been so challenging lately. I have wanted to post and ask for support for quite awhile, but I felt like I shouldn’t. My burden, by worldwide standards, is very light. But right now it feels so heavy. Then as I started this thread I thought again, “How selfish!” I have an amazing amount of support in real life, but I just can’t seem to wrap my mind and heart around everything going on. No one I know is quite where I am. Even with the extra help, all the prayers, and support here on CAF. I still feel like I am being drilled into the ground.

Here’s the rundown: (not necessarily in order and with random breaks for whitespace) 7 months post-partum; 3-year-old in preschool because of delays; recovering from a remodel (paid for by family since we rent from them); garage is full from the remodel, car feels evicted; having hormonal headaches, dr’s advice, “stop breast-feeding if they are that bad”; struggling to promote NFP because of resistance;

baby daughter has 2 volumes, and ; feeling guilty for getting help from my mom; feeling bad for failing at the one thing I’ve ever wanted to be (wife, mom, homemaker); my sewing business has been closed for the remodel since November; lots and lots of abstinence because CM is all fertile, can’t get temps because of baby hours;

so tired I keep losing it with my son; feeling guilty for feeling guilty about bad parenting; I’m awake when I should be asleep, and vice versa; been too sick or whatnot to run errands; have missed Mass more lately than when I was practically a lapsed Catholic; struggling because I have it all and yet I still can’t get my act together lately; frustrated because prayer just doesn’t seem like enough lately; cat of 10 years died recently; Been in the longest single fibromyalgia flare of my life, if I ask dr for help he just says it is PPD (those who know me say it isn’t); generally frustrated at being sick; heavier than I have been in my life; massive medical bills even with insurance;

And oh yeah probably the single biggest one: My dear husband, my knight-in-shining-armor, my rock, is in the most stressful event of his life. His sleep disorder has gotten out of control and has finally had to see a neurologist for it. He woke up one morning to his wife and children gone with no memory of yelling and threatening us. (It wasn’t us he was threatening, but whomever he was angry at in the dream he was acting out.) So my very shy, reserved husband has to go to the hospital on May 9 and get wires hooked to his head and try to sleep there overnight. Want to see a giant, fearless man terrified? Yeah, that’ll do it!

So the good things: a loving family (including in-laws); that loud baby is Daddy’s little girl and such a blessing to him; a mom who lives close and comes on a moments notice when I’m terribly sick; friends who pray with me; roof over our heads; money coming in; my new EM make-up to boost my self-esteem; a son who recently learned to say, “I love you, Mommy”; a fat, healthy baby (last one wasn’t); a loving husband who loves his family so much that he is willing to get wires on his head; and finally, our faith, yep, still Catholic!

I don’t really know why I finally posted. I’m long-winded even now. I think I could just use extra prayers and support. Posting now before I lose my courage…


praying–I’m leaving for Adoration in 3 minutes and I’ll remember you there.

make sure you are getting enough sleep yourself.

God bless.


I’m so sorry to hear about all these hardships. For me, it’s sometimes helpful to pull the whole “knot” apart and reflect only on the things I can actually influence in some way.

If you do have PPD, should you perhaps consider medication to get you over the hump? Can you get a break from your daily grind by hiring a sitter or asking your mama to relieve you for a few hours every few days? Is it possible to sleep when baby girl is switched “off” and darling son is in pre-school? I know that isn’t the same as getting a good night’s rest, but ANY sleep at this point is better than nothing.

Try and give yourself a break from the guilt. Nothing positive will come from that and in fact, it will only contribute to your physical and emotional pain. You’ll get through this and your kiddles are not going to be scarred for life.

Forget about the household annoyances like a stuffed garage. You’ll get to it when you have time. At least the mess isn’t sitting in your livingroom!

I’m so sorry about your kitty. I just lost my 20 year old best feline friend. I didn’t think it was possible to cry as much as I did that first week. It’s very painful and probably the sadness is even more acute for you because of everything else going on.

I’ve been struggling with a chronic pain condition that has kept me from Mass. I called the Parish and requested that Communion be brought to my home. I recommend you do the same. We need the grace from the Eucharist to get through these challenging times.

I will keep your husband in my prayers. I know this has been difficult for you both and I hope they can find the problem and treat it so the two of you can get back to your lives.

Pray, even though you don’t feel like it. For months, my prayer life has been as dry as a desert so I know how hard it is to continue when you feel as though your cries are falling on deaf ears. But we know that He hears us and is, in fact, pulling us through the tribulations.

You pray for me and I’ll pray for you!:thumbsup:


I am sending prayers your way. The previous post had some great advice…use what you can. Life in general can be pretty overwhelming at times, and right now you have many reasons to be overwhelmed. Take care of yourself first so that you can be a functioning wife and mother. I agree with the guilt part…let go of it. It serves no purpose but to drag you down even further and helps to continue the cycle of the feelings of failure. Again, take care of yourself when you can and don’t be afraid to ask for help when you feel that you need it.:console:


Your not selfish,
and I am praying that Saint Dymphna (patron siant of sleep disordrs) intercede to help your husband and your family.


<<>> :console:
LittleDeb–to answer your question, I don’t know. I’m sure you already know God wants you to let Him help carry your burden, and you already know also that He, likewises, shares His cross with you. I just wanted to remind you of that because we often forget when times are difficult.

If you ever lifted weights when you exercised for physical training, you probably know the feeling of adding more weight to your workout. Sometimes it makes the muscles feel like jello and it is exhausting. Yet, by increasing the weight and repetitions, that which once felt difficult become easier. You may think you are in the worst shape of your life, but God looks at your soul. This is your spiritual work-out:bowdown2:, and The Trainer is getting you really buff. :thumbsup:


**Oh Deb, if you posting for help/support ONCE is selfish, what does that make ME?:wink:

You know I understand much of what you are going through. IT SUCKS. It’s ok to hate the heavy cross you have been given, as long as you don’t give up carrying it. Who knows why you have been burdened so heavily? God does. But until we meet Him face to face we just have to trust that He is there to help us and we can do it.

So take the time to really feel upset over this. If you are even a tiny bit like me you spend so much time feeling guilty for feeling upset that you don’t get a chance to work through the real and raw emotions. CRY. YELL. PRAY. Do whatever it takes to really acknowledge what you are feeling so you can get over it. And I don’t mean get over it like it’ll go away. I hope you do know what I mean because it’s hard to explain.

As for the fibroflare, I’m with ya. It’s the hormones, the breastfeeding, the horrible sleep disturbances…blah blah blah. You will get through it. You have wonderful support, IRL as well as here. Ask for as much help as you need and stop feeling guilty!!! You are not lazy. You are not exaggerating. You are not selfish. Your troubles are as real as anyone elses and you deserve as much support and love as anyone else.

I know that for me at least, having fibro can really mess with the self-worth. I spend a lot of time either feeling like a failure, or fighting that I’m feeling like a failure. But so many wonderful people have told me that I’m not and neither are you.

There is so much more I want to say but I am having trouble finding the words. So I will stop with a big old hug and pray that you get through this very challenging time:hug3:**


I really like this post right here. It is so true. If you cannot make it to church please do call and at least get the Eucharist brought to you. It will help tremendously. I will keep you in my prayers. I can’t offer any real advice but I do know how hard life can get sometimes when everything seems to pile up at once and nothing is getting taken care of. I hope things get better for you. We are hear to listen if you need more support for anything :). God bless.



what a great observation/analogy!


:hug1: You have my prayers.

If you have help from your mom, take it without feeling guilty she’s your Mom…you’ll help out your kids one day. We lived above my Mom for almost 3 years. Even just to get dinner cooked, was really helpful.

Don’t worry about the house being perfect, I’m not sure it can be perfect with little kids in the house. It’ll get cleaned when they go off to school (or get married).

Prayers for your DH and his health.

And whenever you need, just post, we’ll all try virtually help, even if we can’t be nearby.


Hopefully you’re feeling a tiny bit better now and can appreciate some humor. If not, I apologize…

But your little girl has OFF??? Mine just has loud. You’re so lucky;):stuck_out_tongue:



My wife doesn’t have fibro, but she did have depression spurred on by a baby and extended family problems, and my own sister had severe PPD…

If you are cycling (this is of no value if you are not yet doing so), an alternate way to detect ovulation is fertility tester sticks, available for around $0.40 each from ebay when bought in bulk (tho it has been over 6 months since I purchased as 100 sticks lasts a long time the way my wife uses them…)

They are normally used by people trying to conceive, but they give the same information about ovulation as does CM – but without the many, many false positives…

Eg, when the test goes positive, ovulation happens a matter of hours to a day later – and the egg’s lifespan is only around a day, so first test positive + a minimum 48hours is the onset of the infertile period. (waiting three to six days is quite conservative.!) The only caveat is that if the test goes positive and then negative 1 day and then positive again the next (which generally ONLY happens to people on fertility drugs) don’t trust the test that cycle. I have NEVER seen this case, but others on fertility drugs have…

If you aren’t cycling – these tests will confirm the first ovulation if you use them every day, but they can’t be used to decide when to STOP having relations as can the CM rules, but only when it is safe to start.

As to the depression like symptoms, even if you aren’t PPD, the fibro and other stresses may be wearing your resistance to depression down – preventitively, Zoloft is often prescribed by gynecologists to boost your immunity to depression. (you’ll feel less overwhelmed even if you don’t have depression, though it takes about a month and a half before the difference is felt at all…and the meds are very inexpensive – it often actually costs more to process the insurance by the pharmacy than to just buy it outright without insurance !!! )

Sorry to hear about your husband. I know what it is like to be in his shoes!
My family has lots of sleep apnia… So everyone thought it was just sleep apnia in my case at first, but even after having my nose repaired (which is a WONDERFUL improvement on breathing) I still found the use of anti-depressants helpful in getting useful sleep. (There is also that new melatonin, Rozerem, which I’m trying to see if that works better than warm milk at night, but it will be another two weeks before I know :frowning: )

You’re a wonderful wife to notice the good things in your life, because those will help your husband, rather than wear him down – which he assuredly needs at this time of crisis – a strong and reassuring wife and extended family can make the difference between recovering from sleep deprivation and going into a severe depression. Keep up the cheer!

You’re both in my prayers tonight! God bless you both.


Thank you so very much for the wonderful replies. You guys are great!

First off—“Your baby has an OFF???” :rotfl::rotfl::rotfl:

You have all given some great ideas and support. The very first response was someone praying for me in adoration…I knew I was supposed to post when I did. Thank you so much. OK, in my stress I was going to try to keep track of names and thank you all personally but I just cannot, so please forgive me.

My mom came by again today and she was glad to do so. My dad went out of town so she didn’t have anything really pressing.

Oh before I forget…I have to be very careful with anti-depressants. They have recently discovered that there are 2 forms of fibromyalgia. One is made worse by anti-depressants. That is the one I have. Many people don’t have a negative reaction to the “re-uptake inhibitors” or whatever they are called (I don’t have my source handy). But for those of us with this form, a wrongly prescribed medication will send us into a full tailspin.

I have asked those close to me to really watch for PPD since it is hard to be objective. A longtime friend hadn’t seen me in awhile and asked if I was. I said, “I don’t know, you tell me.” By the end of the conversation she said, “Nope. You’re just more stressed than I have ever seen you. But you are still finding so much to laugh about, so I’m not worried.” My family agreed.

Now anxiety…yeah, :stuck_out_tongue: but none of the medications there are for short term use and take forever to level out. Oh how I miss my melatonin! But the research hasn’t been done on it so it is “not recommended for pregnancy or breast-feeding.” Bummer.

It’s weird, my own parents won’t bring me Communion even though they are both trained. I think they struggle with bringing to someone who doesn’t ‘look sick.’ You know, “Oh hi LittleDeb’s mom. Isn’t this the daughter you were bring Communion to because she is so sick. Why are you out shopping together this week?” Or maybe I come by my ‘I don’t want to be a selfish burden’ attitude from them. I think you’re right. I need to call my own parish.

What an amazing analogy of weight training! I am really going to meditate on it. It makes a whole lot of sense. BTW, I hate weight training so that is making me more aware that it is probably a good analogy.

I am so thankful that some of my longtime friends on here posted, but I have to say I was also very touched that some newbies posted too. So sweet!

Ack…wow, apparently my switch requires a staple gun. Thanks again for all the prayers. It is so comforting to know there are people who know where I am (sometimes exactly where I am)! Please keep praying…gotta try to remember to PM urban-hermit since he seldom hangs out in family life. He’s been praying the Rosary for my family.

Oh and for St. Dymphna’s intercession, DH’s first name is Eddie.

Thank you all!! I do feel a little better.


You’re welcome.

I don’t know much about fibermyalgia, but I am glad you do. How do you know which kind you have?

Also, there are other varieties of medications which can be taken while breastfeeding, although they are limited – like the ones my sister took while breastfeeding, I’ll have to ask her.

A couple of non-medicine food suppliments are also helpful, 5HTP (hydroxy trypotophan) is the standard one – but it takes quite a bit and is $ – it isn’t an SSRI but it does increase seratonin levels a little if fibermyalgia is not intrinsically affected by seratonin! For some people phenylalanine (the same as causes PKU so be careful if you had PKU) can help, and so can Tyrosine.
Though, except for 5HTP, I don’t know if the others suppliments would help. BTW: my wife laughed at the psychiatrist – she was still diagnosed with depression – she wont take any prescribed medication, but she will take the suppliments, and for her they do help.

There is quite a bit of fear about anything to do with pregnancy, for example Unisom, which was originally designed for and approved for pregnancy is contraindicated in pregnancy – although all five of the gynecologists my wife had told her it was quite safe to take, the only effect it had on a child was to slow their heart down a little bit – which wasn’t a problem. Ask your gynecologist, it’s their opinion – but as a sleep aid, unisom is occasionally taken by my wife even breastfeeding.

On the Melatonin, no one can avoid having it as we produce it every night (at least when we work right.) Even drinking warm milk gives significant amounts of it… The primary research scare (hyper) is that it can delay the onset of puberty slightly when taken in high doses – that’s why often time bottles will say contraindicated for children under 18…(not just pregnant and nursing) – But companies are simply afraid of parents who have a melatonin un-related – later pubesing child – will sue because of a single case which might have been slightly delayed (no ill effect except puberty came slightly later…and 18 year olds generally don’t need to be having babies today anyhow.) However, for children under 18 with autism – it has proved effective in calming them down, so all the available research says it has no effect at all. (My youngest brother is autistic…)

Ask your gynecologist, they usually keep up on the real threats to children and perhaps newer research has come to their attention…

God bless you, and may your children grow like olive vines in the recesses of your home. :wink:


The condition I have is also unpredictable in it’s intensity. I can be down for the count on Sunday, but back to work on Monday. After 30 years of living with this illness, I’ve learned that I don’t have to explain myself to anyone, nor do I need to feel guilty. I NEED Communion and should be able to request it without feeling like I am “not sick enough”. When I called my parish, they didn’t even ask what was wrong with me. I simply told them I had been missing Mass for too many weeks due to illness.


You are so right! I’ve got to get over feeling bad about it. I said the same thing…I NEED Communion.


Hi LittleDeb

No advice from me, just a couple observations.

It sounds like you’re facing the normal problems of life, only you’re trying to do it while running on fumes. As if Fibromyalgia flare ups weren’t enough of a challenge to work through, you’ve got the added exhaustion of a high maintenance baby and the stress of your husband’s sleep disorder to contend with. You may be a hero every time you make it through a (24 hour) day!

I’ll be adding my prayers for you to the others in this thread, also hoping beyond hope for your condition to subside and for your husband’s upcoming “ordeal” to put him on the path to effective treatment. I’ve noticed that caring for a high maintenance baby often gets easier in increments. My own high maintenance daughter turned five this year, and guess what…she’s still high maintenance. The difference is that now, while she can be tiring, she’s no longer exhausting, nor has she been exhausting for a very long time. I pray that you see a few increments soon with your daughter.

Deb, you should know that my reasons for sending prayers your way are not entirely selfless. When I first joined CAF, your clear, simple posts (particularly on Theology of the Body) changed my entire spiritual outlook. There are a handful of exceptional writers on this forum, and you are one of them. While I certainly appreciate Christopher West, I must say, I’ve found tremendous value in the feminine perspective you bring to our late Holy Father’s teaching. I would love to see you able to get your thoughts “out there” some day, whether you put together a book or just start a blog. Long-winded is good in your case.

For now though, more than anything, I pray through the intercession of our Blessed Mother and Saint Joseph that the Lord sends healing to your family and peace when the healing takes time. Thanks for all that you give to us. :slight_smile:


Thank you so very much!

I wanted one thing for this weekend, to go to my parents’ retreat house. I feared the energy it took would be too much. On Saturday morning I took a very quick break and logged in. I read your amazing post while surrounded by my family. I read it out loud to them with a catch in my voice, and my heart in my throat. I’m sorry I wasn’t able to respond then, but I just couldn’t quite yet.

All of the prayers I have received got me through the tiring weekend. Your post and its timing, was a nice little ‘coincidence’ (a miracle in which God has chosen to remain anonymous.) We went out of town, on retreat, to celebrate. You gave me a very precious birthday gift.

Thank you and may God truly bless you as you have blessed me. My heart overflows with gratitude for all I have received.


Littledeb, Hope springs eternal, where there is life there is hope! I confidently hope that we will hear many improvements have occurred in your life and your family’s. Thank you so much for posting. :slight_smile: AS FOR YOUR problems, (jk) financial woes or challenges can be pretty fundamental and some posters are in the economy’s predicament big time. We were in the homemade diaper washing stage of our firstborn’s life in 1984 when our well “went dry”. It ended up costing 777 dollars to fix it but we now treat well water as a precious gift and thank God for every cool glassful. We have been a single wage earner family for twenty seven years this month and I, the (sometimes) day job holder, have made around 777 thousand dollars in wages in forty years of time in the workplace, four of which were in the USAF back in '68-'72. I don’t even mean to be minimizing your troubles; you do seem to be dealing with them very well.:thumbsup: The fibro- problem makes tears come to my eyes (I’m softheaded/-hearted), because a sister-in-law has it and doesn’t seem to deal as well as you with it. I would like to remind you of something you probably already know: physical exertion usually is good for your attitude/depression. A nice long walk with the Husb. or a child in the fresh air might help a lot.:slight_smile: God Bless you and your loved ones all the days of your lives.:thumbsup: Colmcille


Don’t ever think you are selfish to ask for prayers and to let it out when things are getting too much. We need each other and that’s what we are here for.
Sometimes with all the help around us and thinking we should be happy and coping, but we’re not, makes it worse. Don’t feel guilty for feeling overloaded. You are where you are at the moment and it will pass, eventually.
I will pray for you and your husband, for your burdens to be lifted and your heart to be filled with God’s peace.
I have posted this prayer a few times on here and forgive me if you have read it before, but I love it as it reminds me that everything is in God’s hands and we just need to trust.

Why you are confused and shaken when faced with problems of life?

Leave the care of all your things to me and everything will get better. When you abandon yourself in me, everything will resolve with tranquility according to my will. Do not get desperate, do not direct a shaken prayer at me, as if you wanted to demand the fulfillment of your desires. Close the eyes of your soul and tell me calmly: Jesus, I trust in you.

Avoid the preoccupations and anguishes and the thoughts of what he can happen next. Do not spoil my plans, wanting to impose your ideas on me. Let me be God and act with freedom. Abandon yourself confidently in me. Rest in me and leave your future in my hands. Tell me frequently: Jesus, I trust in you.

What more damage does to you is your reasoning and your own ideas and to want to solve things your way. When you say to me: Jesus, I trust in you, do not be like the patient who asks his doctor to cure him, but he suggests the way to do it. Allow yourself to be carried in my divine arms; do not be afraid, I LOVE YOU.

If you think things are getting worse or are complicated in spite of your prayers continue trusting. Close the eyes of your soul and trust. Continue saying to me at all times: Jesus, I trust in you.

I need my hands to be free to be able to work. Do not tie me up with your useless preoccupations, Satan wants that: to agitate you, anguish you, to take away your Peace. Trust only in ME, abandon yourself in ME. So do not worry, throw all your anguishes at ME and sleep tranquilly. Always tell me: Jesus, I trust in you and you will see great miracles. I promise this to you because of my love for you.

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