5 on a Friday: Fatigued Edition

January 28, 2022

1- This was a WEEK. I am triggered emotionally now every time a kid gets a URI. G ultimately tested negative for CV (yay) but we kept her home 2 days. I still had childcare for most of it, so this wasn’t such a big deal! Maybe this wasn’t even the full cause of my distress this week. But I was sad for a lot of it.

2- Podcast rec: Dr Becky’s Ep #40 of Good Inside with guest Eve Rodsky. What a great pairing! I sent this to multiple friends.

3- I think I really need to do some social things. Yeah COVID etc, but a) hopefully we have peaked here — unless there is a dual peak, things look promising!) and b) it’s our good weather season, so doing things outside is generally doable. I need to get some things on the calendar that aren’t just sitting sidelines at a kids’ sports event, stat.

4- OMG, winter is actually sort of coming. I’m actually moderately alarmed at the thought of spectating a 3-4 hour track meet in 40 degree weather on Saturday. I should have actually bought a coat when I was discussing it months earlier! Ahh well. We may have to go to Target tonight to buy Cameron some pants and something warm for under his uniform. Gahhh.

5- I’m just feeling really really tired lately. I don’t know if it’s related to mood, my attempts to run more (though I am not really running that much — haven’t even hit 20 mpw), or just to things feeling challenging at work (plus somehow I seem to have accumulated more 7:30a / 5p meetings. I am going to tally these up . . .). Maybe I am just old. I haven’t gotten blood taken for a while so maybe I will schedule my PCP visit soon (need another mammogram RX anyway . . . sigh).


  • Reply Coree January 28, 2022 at 6:06 am

    Ugh, we’ve had a sick kid since Tuesday night, and he got better yesterday and I came down with it. Our energy levels are mismatched – kiddo is ready to move, move, move and I just want to lie in a dark quiet room. Trying to vaguely keep up with work, but I’m wrecked and need to get on a plane Sunday ngiht and teach in person on Monday.

    All those first thing/last thing meetings are terrible, are you in a position to push back at all?

  • Reply Omdg January 28, 2022 at 8:21 am

    The before and after work hours meeting really take it out of you. Even just 15-20 min less sleep each day accumulates. If I have two nights in a row of bad sleep I find it takes me a few days to feel ok again. I’ve also found that with exercise I really have to ramp up slowly or I feel reliably exhausted afterwards. All of this is to say, I think a lot of what you’re feeling is normal, and you can give yourself some grace. This is a marathon, not a sprint.

  • Reply Sarah D January 28, 2022 at 9:06 am

    Agree with OMDG, also it sounds like you may have some pandemic fatigue. (Constant low level anxiety + minimal social life + work stress = 😖)

  • Reply Irene January 28, 2022 at 9:21 am

    I’mm sorry Sarah. I’m feeling really desperate for some social interaction but we are in the middle of a really cold winter and outside is just not fun for long. Our family has decided we are just ok with doing some indoor stuff right now (masked in crowds or if people ask, not masked for 1:1 play dates with classmates. I’m really worried about every single pin my family so now that our numbers are improving we are going to be a little more open to seeing people.

    I’m just so…tired of everything!

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa's Yarns January 28, 2022 at 9:59 am

    What is the deal with all the early/late meetings? Surely no one appreciates those… Can you try to take more of them from home so it truncates your time at work? Even if it’s slightly suboptimal to do them at home? I know schedules are hard to work around so that is how meetings get scheduled at that time but hopefully none of them are recurring?

    I think many of us are feeling similar to you. I had a URI again this week and tested negative again. But it was our 6th covid test in our house hold in January!! I am anxious for the covid tests to come from the government and hope they are a different brand from what we have. We have QuickVue tests and the 2 tests I’ve taken have been false positives (did a PCR following the at home test and it was negative both times!). But we’ve used these tests on my kids and they have always been negative. I don’t know what it is in my nasal passage that prompts a false negative. I also ordered some Binax one from Walgreens how that insurance covers them. It would be nice to have tests that I actually trust!

    Can you and Josh book a long weekend or even a weekend away? I bet even just 2 nights away would be really refreshing!

  • Reply Jen January 28, 2022 at 10:16 am

    Will also raise my hand and say pandemic fatigue – what was the article that had a really good word … oh, depleted. It is exhausting. The day in, day out really takes it out of us. And also the boredom, you mentioned more social things which i would also vote for. Feeling very groundhog’s day since we started through Omicron every day feel a bit the same with not much to break it up or look forward to (we here in Ontario, Canada are living through the re-institution of public health measure including no indoor dining, gyms and pools being closed, restricted gathering size). Sigh.

  • Reply Elisabeth January 28, 2022 at 10:50 am

    Honestly, I think this is modern living (for most of us). Busy careers, feeling pressure to be all and do all (exercise regularly, wear nice clothes, be available when someone needs you via a device but don’t overdo time on screens, have a thriving marriage, be fun and playful with your kids, read lots, travel to fun destinations, volunteer, make time for friends and other social events. Oh, and be happy and content while doing it all. The last bit alone is exhausting enough.
    I’ve been trying SO hard lately to take a step back. I’m still feeling some mood issues, but it’s a bit startling sometimes to see what life (mine specifically and then society in general) has become.
    Hope you have a good weekend and thanks for keeping it real.

    • Reply Mrs. Candid January 28, 2022 at 9:45 pm

      True, we can’t be everything to everyone all the time. We need to take a step back from somethings while we focus on others and that list will keep changing.

  • Reply Char B January 28, 2022 at 2:15 pm

    Whenever I feel tired for a period it is always 1. Stress or 2. I am brewing an illness. My daughter is off with covid this week, last week it was my son. There was two days of double homeschooling while also looking after the toddler. He and I had covid in December. I’m not sure how my husband has avoided it! I feel completely fatigued from it all too. I’m in the UK so things are probably quite different but there is starting to be an element of things have got to go back to normal now. We no longer have to wear face masks as from yesterday (although I will for a while) and there’s talk of dropping isolation from the end of March.

  • Reply Alyce January 28, 2022 at 3:27 pm

    I’m sorry to hear it’s been so tough lately. I hope the situation improves, sooner rather than later.

  • Reply Sara B. January 28, 2022 at 4:33 pm

    The early/late work combination is killer. For me it is a big contributor to feeling like I’m overfunctioning and having trouble with boxing in work. It’s a really tough problem in medicine+administration. One day we physicians might figure out how to stay clinically active and meaningfully contribute to running our hospitals without killing ourselves.

  • Reply coco January 28, 2022 at 4:45 pm

    sorry to hear you’ve had a tough week. I also felt more tired lately, not sure if it’s post-stress weeks fatigue, hormonal shift (Lutheran phase), attempting to do more gym sessions, or just getting old. probably a combination of all.
    I keep reminding myself that’s normal to have downweek, and I’ll get my energy back soon. hope you do too.

  • Reply Liz January 28, 2022 at 7:11 pm

    Just an observation (I’m going to lecture you like I’m your mother) but I think you were happier when you only worked 4 days for example when you returned to work after G was born. If I was you I would scale back work for 12 months and reassess. I mean seriously you do so much and I personally don’t know you but I can already tell you won’t retire early, you probably won’t retire at normal age. You will probably work in some capacity for 40 more years! My GP is still going 3 days a week at 78! Why cram it all in now?? Why not spread it out? You are always saying don’t look at 24 hrs but instead look at 168 hrs. Why not look at that the same way with work? Now go to your room and think about this 🙂😉

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 28, 2022 at 8:07 pm

      Very very interesting. I actually am not sure it just bc I was part time … my job was different. And quite honestly maybe not as exciting but less time intensive and emotionally stressful. Something to think about …

      • Reply Alyce January 29, 2022 at 6:48 am

        Your schedule is three days clinical, two days admin, right? Maybe that balance is part of what’s off. I’m a total layperson here in terms of knowing what goes into being a program director, but I’ve always been surprised that it could apparently be done in two days.

        Also, I feel very similarly situated – I got a promotion in 2020 to a job I largely love when the workload is reasonable, but we have deeply intense periods of months at a time where the work expectations are simply unreasonable and every time we’re in one of those tranches I’m deeply unhappy and want to quit. The only thing that stops me is having wonderful managers I’m in the trenches with, and not wanting to leave them hanging. I would 100% quit this kinda shitty job if it weren’t for them. I just don’t want to live with this level of stress and anxiety.

        • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 29, 2022 at 10:20 am

          It’s actually 2-2.5 days clinical, 2.5-3 days GME!

          I absolutely think it’s my increasing leadership roles that have significantly added to stress. It also makes my job moore interesting and somewhat more flexible. I’m trying to decide if that’s worth it.

    • Reply Mrs. Candid January 28, 2022 at 9:45 pm

      I love ur comment 💓

  • Reply Steph January 28, 2022 at 7:36 pm

    What is your biggest fear when it comes to covid? That you or your children will die? The time spent in quarantine and away from work?

    I think you give covid too much of your time. I think you should be more fearful of cancer then covid. In 2020 alone, 10 million people across the world died of cancer.

    It’s time to move on from’s not helping anyone..

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 28, 2022 at 8:01 pm

      I’m not worried about Covid at all, in terms of us getting it. I get stressed when I can’t send the kids to school for a runny nose. Covid did mess up a recent fun plan but it had so much more to do with the inconvenience of getting it and spreading it (and missing my call week etc) than fear.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger January 28, 2022 at 8:03 pm

      And yes – definitely more fear of quarantine and the annoyance it brings than Covid. Which says something about the wiggle room in my job ..:

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