Creating the life of our dreams – ANYTHING is Pawsible!

Category: Maria’s Burnout

Do you have the courage to bring forth the treasures that are hidden within you?

Am I being true to myself? Am I living the life I’m meant to live – a life that most honors the real me, celebrates my deepest values and respects my highest dreams? This is questions that I struggle with every day now a days. Not only if I have the courage but more importantly – what is my gift? What is it that is going to be my legacy in the world?

I think that my future is going to look (and is already looking) very different from how it would have turned out if I hadn’t undergone my journey – the burnout – over the last couple of years.

My self-esteem was built only on what I managed to achieve at work. First as an authorized accounting consultant and then later as a CFO. I always prioritized work over friends, lovers, vacation, my health and hobbies, over anything to be honest. Now when I have been on sick leave for a very long time and have had the time to discover what I enjoy doing, I have realized that I really enjoy being creative, using my imagination, read books and to travel the world with my future wife Märta. Here a thought emerges. Is this something I can make a living of in the future? It’s a thrilling (and scary) thought.

Then my realistic self emerges and tells me that I need to make a living and that I should go back to economics now that I’m feeling better and is soon to start working again. And yes, this is what is about to happen. At least for a while. The difference now is that I have discovered a whole bunch of things that I enjoy doing, that a had forgotten about when I was working all the time. And today I made a promise to myself that I am going to set aside time to really do these things, and just not dream about them anymore.

Maybe I’ll write a Scandinavian crime fiction book. Maybe I’ll try swimming or paddle. Maybe I’ll start a book club with some new friends. Maybe Märta and I’ll go to a (scary) dance class together.

Its time for me to start living a more authentic life! I think that if you begin to do things that you are frightened of it might make life less scary in the long run. Will you join me?        

456 days without coffee

Could you go 456 days without coffee? I just did (and now I’m about to receive a medal from the Swedish King Carl Gustaf). Anything is pawsible, don’t forget that! 😉

Why am I living a life without coffee (who does that?)

I’ve read that it’s harder to get pregnant if you are over 35 years old and drink more than two cups of coffee every day. I drank three cups and I was 36. Just to show the Universe that I was willing to do anything to get pregnant, I quit coffee (and boy do I enjoy my coffee)! Just like that. Three days of intense headache and then it was done. Or was it…?

Hell no! I miss my coffee every day. I even miss to use my beautiful coffee cups from Le Creuset. And I miss the social thing with coffee that no tea-drinker in the world could ever understand.

One more reason for not drinking coffee was that my iron levels were low (way to low). And coffee makes it harder for the body to absorb iron, hence no coffee.

Unexpected benefits

In the beginning I only drank green- or rooibos tea and nothing with caffeine. This taught me to really listen to my body. It became so much easier to decide when I needed to rest or to take a nap. As you all know I still suffer from my burnout and have low energy levels throughout the day. Before I could take a cup of coffee and go on with whatever I was doing for 1 or 2 hours more before taking that nap. Now I couldn’t without the caffeine. I tuned in more and started to listen to myself. And also, I don’t need to pee as often… 

Unexpected disadvantages 

I’ve gained weight since I quit coffee. Has combustion reduced? Or… did I eat more sweets as a supplement to coffee? I guess we’ll never know. 😉

20 more days

I’ve decided when and where I’ll have my first cup of coffee (for a really long time). I’m going to order an organic black coffee to my first breakfast in Bali! Yey! Less than 3 weeks away. I can almost smell the coffee right now. Delicious! I’ll try to just drink coffee in the mornings. I’ll give you an update on how that goes.

Have you ever quit coffee? And for how long? Why did you do it? Please comment below.

 

IVF-update: Two lesbians on the pill

It’s time for an update, don’t you think?

During the summer we did, not one but two, IVF-trials. One with a fresh embryo and one with an embryo that had been frozen. It still amazes me that this is even possible!  And I am so grateful that we live in a country where we get this help (almost) for free. I’ve joined some American IVF-groups on Facebook and boy do they all struggle. Especially with money for the treatments but also with hormones affecting their bodies and of course a lot of tough feelings. I not going to lie. This is hard. All of it.

I got so caught up in the process of conceiving a child that it almost became my entire reality. For a while I thought obsessively about what food I ate and didn’t ate. I also thought a lot about the fact that I’m still struggling with my burnout. How does this affect my body? Is it even possible to get pregnant in this state that I am in? If I am so low on energy that I barely can exercise can my body then handle a pregnancy?

Meet this little girl (still without a name), our friends lovely, beautiful daughter.

 The questions and thoughts just didn’t stop. That’s when I felt that I needed a break from all of it and I’m glad we made that decision together Märta and I. We have two more embryos in the freezer and I want them to get a fair chance. I need to approach our coming IVF-treatments with a much more laid-back style, otherwise I don’t think I’ll ever get pregnant.

My nephew Mario and I (He’s named after Super Mario Bros)

We love it when Mario comes to visit us in Stockholm!

We decided to wait for at least six months before we do another treatment. That will give me some time to get my body back on track. The hormones gave me endometrial seizures (that hurt like hell) and the cure for this is to take the opposite hormones which is going on the pill. So here we are, two lesbians on the pill, not knowing what the universe has in store for our future. ? It’s kind of exciting and we are now focusing all our energy on our new projects as viral entrepreneurs.

Our pawsome family 🙂

 

Happy Friday!

Maria

Time sickness and my true calling

It hit me today when I sat down to meditate and listened to an introduction by Deepak Chopra. I’ve been suffering from time sickness. He managed to put words into the feelings I experienced when I was stressing out the most before my burnout. He calls it time sickness, and this is how he describes it. 

“We all experience time according to our psychological state. Modern life has taken our experience of time to an extreme. Time is throwing your mind and body out of balance.”

What Deepak calls time sickness would be considered an epidemic.

“It is the ultimate lifestyle disorder because under the pressure and stress of racing against the clock life isn’t lived. We become robotically trained to measure every day by what we achieved or didn’t. The chores left undone, the relationships that we didn’t have time for. The exercise we put off. And so on. This is what it means to suffer from time sickness. Time sickness can be cured because it was borne in our own experience of time. We can change that experience anytime we want” – and Lord do I want to!

How do you know if you relate to time in a dysfunctional way?
Consider the following symptoms:

  • Feeling that there is never enough time in the day
  • Constantly looking at the clock and racing against it
  • Feeling the frustration and failure of not accomplishing what you want to
  • Dreading the passage of time because it sucks energy and youth  

Simply telling someone to stop doesn’t work. Trust me I know, I didn’t even listen to myself. The answear is; an inner shift of awareness.

” We don’t need a better time management we need a new state of mind.” Deepak Chopra

Deepak also said:
” Recognizing the time spent in enjoyment, and also the moment that causes anxiety, is a path to realizing your true calling”

This made me very happy! All my anxiety throughout the last 2,5 years will guide me towards my true calling and that’s what I’m dying to discover! My burnout, and all the problems that it caused me and my loved ones, will all be worth the while. Imagine finding your true calling. ?

Another wise man, and a favorite of Märta’s, is Eckhart Tolle and he said:
” If you are living in the moment consciously experiencing only what is happening now there is no disruption”.

I wanted to pass this message over to you, because it hit me so hard when I heard it. I needed to hear it and I must continue to change my way of living. I often fall back into unhealthy patterns of stress and chasing accomplishments. Imagine the relief of not having those burdens on your shoulders and to put the same amount of energy on enjoying life instead – just as it is!

 

This is the essence of an awakened life.

Namasté, Maria 

Baby journey

This dark Saturday afternoon here in Stockholm, I’m sitting at our big dining table with my new computer, a cup of hot green tea, and just enjoying the calmness. Maria is on the sofa reading a book (a Swedish Classic, that also was made a musical by the Abba duo; Benny and Björn. Maybe you can guess which book it is? 🙂 ). It is so silent and calm. Just what I needed after a hectic week. 

This morning I had a Pilates class and then a distant healing session with a client. After that I sliped in to a hot bath with lavender essential oil and scoup of coconut oil. I feel like a little baby but now 😉 

Talking about babies, as promised I’ll share with you what is going on with our baby plans as for now. For you who saw the first blog post here on Pawsome moms, know that we just got a negative answear on the pregnancy test. We had made our second try of IVF, that didn’t stick. Now we have two more embryos in the freezer (amazing isn’t it?!) waiting for us. 

 

After the last attempt, Maria said she wanted a short break before going at it again. I thouth it was good. The hormones had taken a turn on her and a rest would be for the best. But after a month passing by and a little sisterly advice from my older sister Gina, Maria felt that she wasn’t in good shape to get pregnant. Her coming back from her burnout has taken a long time and is still an ongoing process. Maria said that looking back a year from now when we were in the middle of insemination attempts, she can’t belive how she thouth she would get pregnant. “My body and mind was so not in the state for a pregnancy, but my will of having a child made me blind to se that. I don’t want to make the same misstake again. Looking back and woundering what the h*** I was thinking.” 

Me, on the other hand, have had a gut feeling for a long time that we should start our projects of living our lifes much more freely and working for getting to that point before we have children (Yes I hope we might have two 😉 but one would be wounderful). And I have been conserned about Marias health, what it would mean to go through a pregnancy and then becoming a parent at the state she was in. That did also put a huge feeling of responsibility on my shoulders..  
I felt some what relieved when we deicded to pospone our last two trials of IVF for the future. We both really want to give those last two tries our best <3

We haven’t sat a time limit, we just said that we will give it a longer break now, until Maria feels fine and we are on board with our “Freedom Projects”. 

Oh one more thing!… We have started to look at adoptions. That would just be wounderful 🙂 Let´s see what the future holds! And for sure it holds a Dream trip.. let’s just say Christmas will be very warm this year 😉 

Lots of love ~ Märta 

The Change (Part 2)

If you missed Part 1 you can read it here

My burnout is still hard to talk about. I guess I still feel ashamed. (How could this happen to me? How did I not see this coming? Am I a week person?) Not as ashamed as in the beginning though. During the first couple of months I couldn’t even go out on my balcony at daytime. What if the neighbors saw that I wasn’t at work! What if they thought that I was just lazy being at home. At this time, I hadn’t understood myself what has happened to me, and I sure as hell hadn’t accepted it. I’m still struggling to accept.  

My company for the long days was anxiety and pain in my body. Physically I almost didn’t make it out of the bed, I was so tired. I remember that I was really nervous before my second doctor’s appointment. Not because of the meeting with the doctor, I wasn’t sure I had enough energy for the short walk over to the doctor’s office, a 4-minute walk felt impossible for me to manage and very freightening.

During the last months before my collapse I hardly slept at night. As soon as I closed my eyed, I started to think about work. Planning and prioritizing my impossible workload at the office. I didn’t love my job anymore. It was harder and harder to be on time at the office in the morning. I was deeply depressed at this time, but I had no clue. The toxins that had accumulated in my body through lack of sleep are certain to have impaired both my physical and mental performance. My concentration and memory was also affected. Tired during the day, irritable and fatigued, and yet unable to sleep at night.

When I finally crashed I was scared, scared for my health for the first time in my life. What was happening to me? I didn’t function anymore, not my brain and not my body. It felt like I was imprisoned in my own body.

But I must tell you – this is the best thing that ever happened to me!

You must think I’m crazy, but I’m not. I look at these years (and they are not over yet) as an investment in myself and my family. I know my life will be so much better when I get through this. I know I can find real happiness in the near future because of the insights that come along with this experience. I’ve learned a lot and I’m still learning. I treat myself, my loved ones and my life differently (even though I still fall into old patterns from time to time). I’m finally excited about what the future brings!

The Change (Part 1)

The headache was there, as it always was, and I finally rose out of bed in the morning to drop an effervecent painkiller (or two) into a glass of water and listen to it fizz. It seemed impossible now to face the day without it. Always skipped breakfast. Ran to the coffee machine, without even taking off my jacket, and hit the black coffee button. Then I felt like my day started, I could finally be useful as I woke my computer up and glancd at my “to do-list” at the desk that I’ve written late last night before going home. My priority’s. Always stressed and chasing deadlines trying to make the employers and my customers happy. Waiting for Another “kick”. I worked many years as an accountant and I was good at it. Just one thing though, I totally forgot myself.

I have no idea how many years it took for me, but quite a few I guess, before my brain was seriously damaged. I’m still recovering from what is called burnout or fatigue syndrome. When will I become well again, is it even possible to be the same person again? I don’t think so, because a part of myself is lost forever, for better or for worse. I’m a completely different person now compare to how I was in the spring 2015, when my life took a turn I did not see coming. I crashed. Hard. Into ‘The Wall’.

I treated myself so bad, during a lot of years, that I got a brain injury. My brain certainly doesn’t work as before. Was it all work? No, off course not. I think it was a combination of a lot of things in my life, for example:

  • Chronic headaches since I was 20 years old
  • My work was my entire life and joy, my number one priority (until I met Märta at least..)
  • A previous unhealthy relationship with my ex that drained my energy levels
  • Tons of suppressed feelings during the 10 years I wasn’t openly gay
  • Started working at the age of 11 in the family business
  • Family values
  • Poor diet and not enough exercise
  • Not listening to any warning signals from my own body (I never learned how to)

Hitting the wall 2½ years ago affected life for me and everyone around me massively. How? I’ll tell you in another blog post next week.

Remember that YOU are VALUABLE. Be good to yourself and respect yourself

 

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