Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Weekend syndrome

February is here already and I barely noticed the ending of January having been preoccupied by marking the mocks (bleurgh...) I've also had two weekends in a row when I haven't been particularly well having been laid down with what I am coming to call "weekend syndrome". Weekend syndrome often seems to come after a particularly hectic week (or two or three) and it follows much the same pattern which is that I wake up on a Saturday morning with a headache , usually dull but sometimes acute or with migraine aura, feelings of nausea and acute lethargy. By about 10.30 I usually admit defeat and return to bed. I then sleep all day, usually waking up in the early  evening feeling slightly washed out but much brighter. I first started noticing weekend syndrome about four years ago. It is particularly annoying when I have a lot of work to do that particular weekend because it means I have to get up early on the Sunday and work right through the day.
However, slightly spookily, weekend syndrome does not usually afflict me on a "busy" weekend but tends to lie in wait biding its time until I've got most of my work out of the way and am thinking " I can relax a bit this weekend." That is when my body tends to take the chance to "relax" seriously and why I think  it is most likely stress related and haven't yet bothered to visit the doctor.For example it has never yet happened during the working week, in fact I haven't had a day off sick from work for the last two years, and it has never started on any day other than a Saturday. More worryingly though, the frequency of my "weekend syndrome" attacks has increased and last weekend I had an episode which extended over the whole weekend, both Saturday and most of Sunday. I had to get up on the Sunday to do a couple of hours work, but I felt pretty wretched. By Monday I was pretty much back to normal. Thanks a bunch, weekend syndrome!
Weekend syndrome, although it seems like an enemy is, I suspect, both a coping device and a message if I care to listen to it. It reinforces my conviction that I have simply got to rethink and restructure my life somehow and achieve more work-life balance, or perhaps just achieve more life. Until I've got the fricking time to do this I am just trying to take things a bit easier, to live a simpler life and take care of myself physically and emotionally. On the way into work this morning, feeling pretty good as ironically I often do after a weekend-syndrome weekend, I noticed a lot of daffodils in gardens and hedgerows, brought on no doubt by the mild weather this winter and early spring. When I got home this evening, I went to the shed and dug out the remaining seeds from last year: sweet peas, marigolds, green beans, courgettes and made some plans for what I need to buy- I want some purple sprouting broccoli and, of course, seed potatoes. You can't feel stressed when you are planting, growing, gardening.
Which made me think- it will soon be Lent.


  1. It sounds to me as if you already have the answers to your questions Sue.
    Perhaps the self-imposed 'rest' is in order for you to do just that. Sort out your time allocation.
    Please don't let it turn into depression, it easily could.
    Talk to someone if you can.
    Blessings and prayers.

  2. Thanks Ray.
    I don't think it is depression. I don't feel remotely depressed in that I am not low or sad, I get frustrated with things sometimes but overall I feel mainly positive and enjoy life in general. On the weekends when I am laid low with headaches, nausea and fatigue, the worst aspect is that I've lots of things I want to get on with and it stops me enjoying my precious free time. I suspect it is overwork, stress and exhaustion as my working week can be pretty full on. I do worry at times that there is some underlying health issue though and I am going to start keeping a bit of a log of frequency and see the doctor if it seems to be getting worse :(

  3. Good idea Sue. You need to rule out things like ME.
    Be well.