Black hole weekends: Where to-do list go to die

It never fails. Every week I plan, I prepare, I even get excited for all types of weekend productivity. I mean; writing, reading, researching, cleaning, cooking and self caring. A whole bunch o’shit lined up neatly next to bullet points in my bullet journal (google it), ready to be X’ed out and efficiently handled. But almost every Friday night I come home click on my laptop, find a show on Netflix, curl into bed and that is how I stay. Until I rise on Sunday night, fresh and replenished, and try to squeeze several days of activity into just a few hours before going back to bed disappointed that I have failed at life, again.

It’s become a routine of self deprecation. An easy way for me to reassure myself that I am, indeed, a failure. I get caught in my own trap every time, then I beat myself up about it and promise to try even harder the next weekend. But every weekend is the same.

It wasn’t until a few weeks ago that I started to think this may be more than laziness or procrastination. Monday through Friday I’m on fire, usually. Nothing but big Xs all over my to-do list and that satisfying feeling you get when all is done and all is done well. Until Friday night after leaving my weekly therapy session. Then I go home and shut down.

A couple of weeks ago I had an intense session talking about something I knew would be emotionally and mentally draining. I had no idea, however, how much it would take from me physically. Laying in bed was all that my body could do. I tried my hardest to do even the smallest tasks, but would get to the edge of my bed and without any real mental command find myself back under the covers.

I see now what my body has been doing. I’ve been going into a sort of recovery state. I spill my guts in therapy on Friday and then I stumble home and try to rebuild a better version of what I just destroyed. Every time I break through an emotional or mental barrier in therapy I need time to put myself back together, so to speak.

Don’t be mistaken, I love therapy and my therapist is amazing. I’ve come a very long way since I began making my mental health a priority a year ago. Therapy is where I discovered that I’m an over-thinker by nature which feeds my anxiety. I spend a lot of time thinking about myself, not in a vain way. The thoughts are more negative and harmful than I’d like to admit.

It’s the thinking that keeps me in bed every weekend. I need time to process, to think about what I’ve said in therapy or what was said to me. Time doing nothing but letting my mind do what it needs to get me on to a better path.

This is why I decided I would stop trying to fight it. Now my weekend doesn’t come with a to-do list. No plans with friends, no chores. “Nothing” has become an integral part of my self care routine. I need it and I’m all the better Monday through Friday because of it.

And yes there will be times when I have to actually do things, see people, go places. I can go to work or hang out with friends if I need to, but my mind will continue to wander back to the recovery place. I can’t help it. But if I find that a therapy session has been more taxing than I can bear I will have to cancel or reschedule what ever I have planned. And not feel bad about it. Fuck! I gotta be whole person before I face the world.