Frequently, over the years that I have had PPD, I'll have a good day and then a really bad day. A day that I feel the spirit and learn a great lesson from the scriptures, followed by a day where I feel weighed down beyond my own abilities. On the good day, I seem to have gotten enough sleep the night before and the morning is somewhat smooth. I take time to say a grateful prayer and really think about what help I need and would like from Heavenly Father and ask for it. My children are patient while I say prayers, make my bed, and get shower/get dressed. Even if things don't run perfectly smooth, I seem to have enough patience to handle them all. I fit scriptures in right after breakfast is done, feeling the spirit and getting a good moral out of it. The day usually goes pretty good, until evening, come 7:30, when I really just want to go to bed and wish everyone else would too.
On the bad day, it seems as though from the minute that I wake up, things just don't feel right. I don't feel like I can pray a real good prayer, I allow the children's needs to come before my own, before I know it, it is 10:00 (or later) and only half of us are dressed and the breakfast mess is still hangin' out in the kitchen. I feel like crawling back into bed, just as the phone rings. It's my favorite friend to talk to, but taking that time tells the children it's time to do whatever they want in their rooms, which makes for a difficult rest of the day, because we spend the rest of it either cleaning up after the messes they made while I was on the phone, catching up from previous days, disciplining, trying to lunch, worrying that someone in this house is going to end up in prison some day, and hopefully catching some educational time in the afternoon amid the napping and other toddler distractions.
The bad day may sound familiar to you. Or you may be saying, "Well, I got news for you, hunny! That's nothin' compared to my bad days!" If you were just thinking that, I hope you're laughing now. Honestly, I was being a little modest on the bad day description, because, hey, who wants to really go back and relive the REALLY bad ones, ya know?
I have a few different theories as to why this happens - ya know, the thing where we have a really good day and then a really bad day. (1) Perhaps it is a test to see if we will apply the really good stuff we learned from the good day before, or even from the bad day before in a new day and new time. (2) Perhaps it is us falling into a complacency trap. On the bad days, I usually don't put the big things first. I figure that I can handle anything today dishes out, after all, I handled yesterday just great didn't I? Well I must have forgotten that I DID put 1st things 1st the day before, and that I really did ask for the Lord's help and he REALLY did give it to me. I really did search the scriptures diligently and they really did speak to me. So it wasn't just me handling yesterday, now, was it? Yes, I think that when we don't put 1st things first, the consequences last all day long and they aren't pleasant. (3) Could it be that we ate something the day before that tricked our bodies into thinking that they were nourished, but they really weren't and then we wake up and all of the sudden, we feel it! Our bodies are now screaming at us saying, "Where are my vitamins and minerals? Where is the energy you were supposed to give me? Not only do we not have the energy we need to think clearly, you put junk into us that we now have to figure out what to do with - and that's not going so well!" (4) Lack of gratitude. That's it. A simple lack of gratitude.
So, now what? What kinds of patterns do you notice in your lives? What theories do you have? Does this same thing happen to you?
I want to delve a LITTLE deeper into the second theory. If we are not looking to God, we're not going to get any closer to Him. We might try walking backwards to him while we are looking at a million other things, but the million other things are going to stop us in our tracks. We may end up just wandering around going, "Where was I headed again?" And guess what happens when we wander aimlessly? Nothing good. Satan isn't alone you know. He has plenty of helpers and they will whisper all kinds of garbage into your head, especially when you're not looking at God.
This is why reading scriptures is sooooo important! This is why we are so blessed with the ability to speak to God in prayer! When we are armed with prayer we can withstand the blows of the toddler throwing a tantrum, or the extremely messy floor, or the rude comment at the grocery store, or from your in-law. When we welcome the heroes from the scriptures into our day, we are armed with faith and courage to do those piled up dishes, or to keep a close eye on the kids, or to face your husband when he comes home and the kids are fussy, the house is not clean, and no dinner is started. But, I hope you realize that it's likely that your day will go better than that, because the Lord magnifies your efforts when you have put Him first and tried your best throughout the day.