Sunday, September 30, 2012

Day 1 of Being the Person-Inspiration

I am participating in 31 Days of Blogging.  You pick a topic and write a bit on it every day for 31 days.  This explains my lack of recent posting.  I’ve been doing some prep work.  The thought of writing every day straight for 31 days is a bit intimidating.

Thinking on what I wanted to write about for 31 days, a post I wrote last month came to mind-Be the Person.  Lucy shared her brand of quiet wisdom on her homework, “Be the person you want to be.”  It got me thinking about the person I want to be, and the daily choices I make to be that person.

For the next 31 days, you can read all about my journey-31 Days of Being the Person.  This isn’t a beginning or an end.  This is thinking about who I really want to be and putting that into action. 

This isn’t about wanting to have more time to cook and bake, learn to quilt, learn to craft.  Although, I do want to do those things.

This is about those qualities that I want to nurture in myself.  And in 31 days, I probably won’t get to it all.

This isn’t about perfection.  Perfection doesn’t exist, remember?  And this isn’t about the right way of living.  There is no right way.  There is more than one way to live a fulfilled life.  There will be mistakes; there will be struggles.  It’s a given.

There will also be joy. 

Please join me for the next 31 days as I discuss the person I want to be.  Feel free to add your own insights along the way!

A full listing of the 31 Days of Being the Person series:

Day 2-The Person I Used to Be

Day 3-The Change

Day 4-Time to Live

Day 5-Be Brave

Day 6-Float On

Day 7-Recharging

Day 8-Finding Peace

Day 9-Gratitude

Day 10-Renewal

Day 11-Post Interrupted

Day 12-Reality

Day 13-Sad Endings

Day 14-Simple Faith

Day 15-Enjoying the Moment

Day 16-Other People

Day 17-Forgiveness

Day 18-Keep Your Head Up

Day 19-I Will Wait

Day 20-Rest

Day 21-Present

Day 22-Quiet Gratitude

Day 23-Tenderness

Day 24-Connection

Day 25-Daydreaming

Day 26-Balance

Day 27-Understood

Day 28-Taking Risks

Day 29-Kindness

Day 30-Compassion

Day 31-At the End at Last

Friday, September 21, 2012

This Summer's Doings

I can’t believe this summer is over!  This summer seemed to be a long one.  Maybe because of the hot weather.  The hot weather that started in May.  Maybe because I wasn’t working seven days a week and actually got to enjoy part of it.

I reconnected with family and old friends.  I took care of myself. 

Here’s a recap of my favorite bits of this summer:

Easy meals to eat outside.  That's grilled cheese with avacado, folks.  Yum!

 Beer.  Yes, that look on my face was intentionally weird.

A few days by myself in this place.

Lots of wisdom from this quiet soul.

Pictures of Elwood Wilson.  He’s a decent cat.

Lots of yummy post-run food.

Laughing with family.  I know, I already posted this picture,
but it is one of my favorites.

Laughing with old friends.

My favorite people in my favorite place.

Everyone finding happiness in their peace place.


I hope all of you had a lovely summer! 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Fear of Change


The past couple days have reminded me of how fearful I can still be.  I am afraid of change.  Fear of the unknown that comes with change.

There have been some changes at the workplace.  Not good or bad, simply change.  There are always changes at the workplace.  This shouldn’t be news.

But there was a small gap of time in which there was this undefined future.

And I started overanalyzing.  Because that is what I do when I am stressed out.  It’s how my brain copes.

And I ran.  I ran the fastest 5k this whole summer.  I gave my 5k a name.  Whenever I run the distance of 5k, I think it should have a name, such as the “Blueberry Pancake 5k.”  I ran that one and then ate blueberry pancakes.  Or the “Breaking in the New Shoes 5k.”  I think you can figure out that one.

My brain went into overdrive because after about a day, I was numb.  Couldn’t think anymore.  Couldn’t provide any useful insight.  Couldn’t provide any insight.  There was some relief in no longer obsessing about something.

A thought kept running through my head, “Everything will be fine.  Be still.”  It was a tiny thought.  A whisper.  I knew it was truth.

I went to bed last night and rested my brain.

This morning, I had peace in my heart.  I felt answers coming.  And by the end of the day, I had them. 

It’s nice when things work out like that, an answer to the unknown.  Usually life isn’t that neat and tidy.  We are left with the unknowns.  We have to live with them.  Move on, never having those answers.

So in my effort to stop running from fear, how did I do this time?  Well, I literally ran from my fear.  Ok, ok, not to escape it.  The running was more about clearing my head.  Oh, I could have named my run the “Clearing My Head 5k.”  Next time.

I have to say, I was grateful when my brain shut down.  What does worry do?  It doesn’t change a situation.  It creates panic, especially when we worry about a situation that has no answers.

Change doesn’t have to equal fear.  Another life lesson for me.  I’m sensing I will need some repetition of this lesson.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

School Year Routine


A few weeks ago, I mentioned that I was trying to get refocused as the new school year was starting.  Making more of an effort to spend more time with the girls.  Making more of an effort not to be crazy mom.  Ok, I really would call it psycho mom.

I knew that every day wouldn’t be perfect.  Because perfection does not exist, remember?

This is what I have found out in the past few weeks:

·        I don’t need as much “mommy alone time” in the mornings as I thought.  Now I only take 30 minutes of waking up/coffee time.  I realized that any more than this, and I actually start to lose my motivation for the day.  Weekends are the exception, of course.

·        Eating breakfast before I leave for work (as opposed to once I get to work) helps tremendously with my blood sugar and overall mood.

·        I find myself saying “yes” more to the kids’ requests.  Katy wanted to go on a walk one evening.  I knew she wouldn’t want to walk very far and I was feeling tired from the day, but I said yes right away.  And Katy and I enjoyed our short walk.  And she made me play follow the leader.  The other day, the kids wanted me to get their bikes out.  Usually, I would say, “Let’s wait for Daddy to get home.”  But I said yes right away and enjoyed watching them.

·        I’m having fun just hanging out with my kids.  I watched them wash Barbie dolls in buckets of soapy water outside.  Then they asked me to make some minor repairs on the clothes.  And they thought I was an awesome seamstress.  I can barely sew a button.

·        I think the kids are having more fun hanging out with me.  Mornings are busy around here, but are no longer a panicked frenzy.  Lucy makes more comments, such as “I like this” when we are doing something simple, like snuggling in my bed together, each of us reading our own book.

·        I’m not always successful at getting all of my to-dos finished on my day without kids.  Honestly, some days I’ve been playing around on the computer.  And getting dental work done.  It hasn’t been a total waste.

·        We still have quiet alone time.  And we value it.  We can’t be together all the time, especially at the end of the week. We need a break.  And that’s ok.  We do better together after a break.  We do better if we can retreat to our Peace Place.
Can we keep this up year round?  Who knows.  I sure feel a lot better.  Calmer.  I sure would love more of that.

Friday, September 14, 2012

The Peace Place

I get easily overwhelmed by lots of activity.  I’m like a small child that way.  I also like routine.

At Katy’s preschool last year, they had a separate area of the classroom with pillows and books for kids who needed a break.  They called it the Peace Place.  I had no idea this existed until one day when Katy wanted to make a Peace Place at home. 

Last weekend was a busy weekend.  Sharing in the wedding of an old friend, catching up with another.  It was lovely.

I left the weekend and went straight into a busy week at work.

And now I’m tired.

Not just physically, but mentally.

I need down time.  I need to hit the reset button.

Today was supposed to be a day off but I ended up at work.  And then I had to run.  What would Sister Runner say if I skipped out on today’s run?  And of course I had to make a trip to the grocery store, where I left with a lot but still don’t feel like I have any real food to make it through the week.  And then the carnival at the kids’ school.

So what am I doing right now?  I’m in my Peace Place at home. 

I think Katy’s preschool teachers were onto something.  And it’s not just for kids.

I’m sitting in the chair in my bedroom that is usually covered with clothes that need to be folded and put away.  Today it was covered with dirty clothes that I just threw on the floor.  I needed my chair.  I can’t sit on my bed because I will fall asleep.  I’m listening to music via youtube and writing.  I’m wearing fuzzy slippers.  I closed the door so I wouldn’t have to listen to the drone of the tv.

And it’s glorious.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Figure it out

We’ve been dealing with a certain form of ugliness around here.  It’s called bullying.

I’ll spare you the details.  Because really, I don’t want to get mad about it…again.

It has got me thinking a lot about what we teach our children.  I get it, I understand the theories behind bullying and why kids do it.

My thinking has been on what we teach our kids about friendship, specifically about girls and friendship.

When girls are being cruel to each other (as they often are), we always say, “they’ll figure it out.”  That happens sometimes.  But why do we expect kids to just know the answers?  They are kids, after all. 

They look to us for the answers.  They look at how we live our lives for the answers.  Good or bad.

We can’t make such a bold assumption that they will figure out what healthy means.  Even if we model it.  Even if we show them the opposite.

I think about the women that I see (women from the real world and the work world) and I wonder, when did we start selling ourselves short?  When did we start overlooking a history of substance abuse, domestic violence and failure to pay child support in a potential partner?  These are warning signs!  And I guarantee for the majority of these women, they had a feeling of dread in the pit of their stomachs that they overlooked when getting into this relationship. 

Maybe growing up, someone thought, “oh, they will just figure out.” Well guess what, they didn’t.

I wonder if these women were taught from a young age that they deserved more.  That they were special.  That they deserve a  healthy, respectful relationship.  And I think I know the answer to this.  The answer, sadly, is no.

So then I reflect back on teaching my own ladies about friendship.  I want them to know that they deserve healthy, respectful friendships.  I want them to know that they deserve to be treated with kindness. 

It will be up to them to apply this to their lives.  To set boundaries with bullies.  To nurture relationships with true friends.

But I can’t simply assume they will figure it out.  I owe them more than that.