Wednesday, October 31, 2012

My Time Management Sucks

I was going to call this post negativity, but that sounded to me too much like the results of a pregnancy test and that is not what this is about at all.  It is about how it feels to honestly look at yourself and be called out on some negativity that has been coming out of your mouth and showing in your actions.

Growing up, I was known as a pretty positive person.  Looking to build other people up, even going so far as to take their feelings and make them my own.  Empathy to the nth degree.

It has always been exhausting, but when you are young and only have to worry about school and putting gas in your car, it is fairly easy to deal with. When you are sneaking up on 40, with a toddler, a DH with a stressful job, and have been doing an inordinate amount of not for leisure travel over the past few months, it is much harder to keep your positive flow.

I've been complaining (I recently learned) a LOT about not having any time.  It is a very legitimate thing when you have an infant and you are still trying to remember if you already had lunch.  It becomes more about poor time management when you have a toddler who sleeps in until 10am and takes a 3 hour nap and have family nearby ready to lend a hand.

So my time management sucks.

It is hard to get called on something you are doing.  In my case, doing a LOT of complaining and not a lot of trying to fix the many things bogging me down.

One of those things is a friend of mine.  One of my very closest.  She is going through a few different things that are challenging and she is complaining.  A lot.  Daily.  Through calls and emails and texts.  I'm turning around and telling DH about it.  Under the guise of how can we learn from what she is going through, but I think sometimes it is to make yourself feel better as in, "at least I'm not THAT bad."  That sucks.  On a few different levels.

I'm also listening to many podcasts and audiobooks.  Many.  All day.  Playing in the background, while I feed and play with N, clean the house, drive the car.  They are on constantly.  They are my friends.  They are my escape from the things that bog my mind down.  They are my escape from the overwhelming empathy and feelings that I'm not enough for anyone.

DH's job is very stressful right now and I feel like more often than not, I don't know what to say.
N is very challenging to feed right now, in that toddler what worked for me yesterday is definitely not going to work today.  He has literally put his pointer finger on one corner of a piece of chicken or fruit or whatever and looked at me like "how dare you put that on my tray??"
I just got finished planning and pulling off a family party (with help) that went beautifully and I felt like somehow someone was going to be disappointed with something.  I felt like I needed days to recover afterwards.

I realize that I am putting some imaginary pressure on myself.  That if I need help, I just need to ask.  I can tell DH that I don't know what to say, but that I wish I did and that no matter what, he has my support and love.  I know I can laugh when N will throw a cookie on the floor one day and the next be pushing a chair to the cabinet to get one.  When he will ONLY eat avocado and the next day when he pokes at it and says "Ow" with his eyes.  I know that party was beautiful.  I know everyone said they were happy.  I still can't help but wonder if everyone was telling the truth.  My family is really good at hiding their true feelings.

I should be packing right now to go on the road again tomorrow.  Instead, I am going to go to sleep.  I will get up an hour early and pack.  An hour will be enough, because I will focus on exactly my task.  My phone will be off.  My computer will be off.  I will get up.  Have a cup of coffee and take a shower.  I will pack a bag.  I will focus on my task and baby step them out of my brain and be in the moment.

Maybe what this is what this is all about.  Being in the moment.  If you are in the moment, you don't have time to worry about what everybody else is doing or thinking or feeling.

Ok.  Tomorrow I start focused.  I'll update this and let you know how it goes.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


I was going to title this post "A Little Stronger", but I'm feeling more than a little stronger.  I won't go so far as to say "a lot", but I'm getting there.

Back in August, and I write that as if it was years instead of weeks ago, I was posting and thinking about death.  The feeling was pervasive, getting into my thoughts while washing dishes and dreams at night and happily in the last few weeks, it has been relegated to the far back of my mind, instead of the forefront.

September was a BUSY month and a month in which I had to spend a lot of time alone racking UP the mileage on my car.  I had two massive road trips that I had to make alone and not only was I missing DH and my baby boy, I had to drive at all hours, spoiling my reputation of sleeping on long road trips.  Audio books and 5hour-energy were my closest friends and as cliched as it might be, I learned a bit about myself.

I learned that it didn't matter if it was my first overnight trip away from my son or my second, I tear up just the same while driving away.

I learned that a little time apart is OK.  N was just fine with his Daddy and their boy time is just as important as my alone time.

For both trips I started the night before with thoughts of, "I really don't want to go"  "Really.  Really. Don't want to go." "Don't need to go, it doesn't matter if I go."  But it did and it does and in the end was very worth it. (Again, apologies for the vagueness.  This is the nature of trying to keep my blog fairly private).

It had been years since I hit the road like that.  It was important because it was for family and getting closer to some relatives that I had been rather distant with over the years and it turned out to be worth it in spades.  It reminded me of how important it is to make the time to be with the people we care about.  To stay open to possibilities and opportunities that might otherwise make me want to stay under the covers.  To make the effort and just be in the moment.  To realize that Mentos are my go-to road candy and you must never ever wait until the "next" rest stop.

It also reminded me of how valuable decompression time is after all that travel is too.  I'm still working on that one.

I also had some friends in town who came with their children.  It was beyond awesome to see our kids play together and strengthened my feelings of a sibling for N.  I tear up (again) with the thought of what a wonderful older brother he would be.  But, as I watched my friend struggle with a toddler and an infant, watched her wash pump parts and wait up until midnight to pump, only to be awoken less than 4 hours later, I remembered the relief that I felt when I put the pump away, the sheer ecstasy of sleeping more than 6 hours in a row and I realized that I won't be devastated if this doesn't happen again for us.

Our family of three is the most beautiful thing I've ever seen.

On a different kind of strength note, I dug up and swore at a huge bush, roots and all tonight.  I started off just doing some light yard work and asked DH to let me know an hour had gone by.  I was just going to trim that gnarly bush in the front and then I was just going to clip it back a little more and then I just started digging.  And clipping.  And swearing "You will not beat me bush!"  After another hour passed my original hour, I got that bush up and out.  I filled the hole back in with dirt.  It is ready for a new start.

I'm ready for a new start.  Stronger than before.