Friday, May 20, 2016

small.

There aren't enough hours in my day.

I have grit and grime and a to-do list and a calendar.

I am running full-throttle at work and when I get home it's a different kind of crazy, and in a lot of ways I'm too tired to care anymore (like putting on house flip-flops while cooking because I don't have time nor the desire to sweep that floor one. more. time.)

And I'm racing to 40 and feeling the fatigue and the lack of youthful glow on my exterior.

I have highs and lows in my life, but I often center my thoughts on the past and the lows I created for myself.

So, I go to bed and find myself doing the same thing again the next day. 

In my quiet moments I just want some peace and order to my life and surroundings. 

I wonder if that is really too much to ask?  

But in my deepest corners of my heart, I'm listening to the Whisper.  The one who knows you by name and intimately knows your heart.  The one who gives me hope and puts peace in my spirit.

There's a book waiting to be written. 

And I have a message that resonates in my heart and a message I believe will resonate with others.

So, today I will walk in this chaotic life, often feeling very small and insignificant, but recognizing that in my smallness, He is greater.

And that when I am feeling small, I can be free.  

To be continued. . .walk with me? 

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Because we're tired.

I seem to have run into a lot of people in the Tired Tribe recently.  Exhausted, unmotivated, unable to get out of the constant feelings of panic and go!, unable to get on top of that to-do list, unable to get it together and be awesome.  Part of this is because I surround myself with teachers each workday and we are all feeling the end of the year stresses and we're just burnt out on 2015-2016 school year.  Thank goodness for Teacher Appreciation Week and the sweet little gifts and moments that remind us why we put ourselves through it each day.

But I'm finding people outside of the classroom building who are feeling it, too.  They've wiped the warpaint on their faces as well and they are going at it with everything they've got, and sometimes it's still not enough.  They are killing it on the regular, and are getting killed in return.

It's hard to be "so done" when you can't even get started. 

I've had conversations with friends and we've all come to the conclusion that there has got to be a better way.  Our lives are operating at maximum capacity and then we see other people in the same life stage, and they are doing it all better with smiles on their faces and with clean-faced children.  They are working 9-5 with kids in sports and they go to the gym and still have time for their crafty hobbies.  Meanwhile, I'm struggling to get through my day with my cute little 7-9 year old students (who are so, so sweet but extremely taxing on my introvert meter), and then getting home to be a functioning member of the family who listens and does and cooks and cleans and exercises.  I feel like I'm flying by the seat of my pants and I'm going full-throttle and still not getting everything done with excellence.  

I told my husband last night that I'm handling the necessary things in life, but I'm not doing anything well.  I'm going to work, I'm feeding people, I'm ensuring underwear is clean, but I'm not on top of my game by any stretch of the imagination.  There is little time for things that fill my tank and my poor tank is nearly bone dry.  

And while I feel very sorry for myself, I don't have the time to sort through what it is I'm feeling sorry about. 

I don't want this to turn into a "woe is me" post, but there is something to be said for taking care of yourself.  We've all been reminded that we can't pour out of empty containers, and there is a lot of truth in that statement.  I have found myself daydreaming about dark rooms and blankets and no stimulus for a weekend.  I become grumpy and moody when my brain has time to disengage because it only knows how to operate on all cylinders and doesn't know what to do with space anymore.  I am anxious and overwhelmed and cannot enjoy downtime because my brain is quickly working through my to-do list.  

But, here's the thing I'm telling myself:  I'm not competing with anyone else.  I'm not trying to be like that other lady who apparently has it all together because her "together" is completely different from mine.  Having it together is on a spectrum and for some folks, just getting through the day breathing is all they need to handle.  And for others, they might be able to handle all of the spinning plates and smile without having lipstick on their teeth.  

And I'm very happy for and amazed by those people. 

And I think they are aliens. 
And very, very good at crafting themselves on social media.

So, get out there and handle your own business like a boss today.  Recognize that you do not have to compete with the world to validate yourself and your importance.  All of those people you are dying to impress are merely trying to keep up with themselves and don't have time to think about your achievements.  We are all handling our individual challenges, and there is no need to fight for position when you are in a race for one.  

Let's run alongside each other, cheer others on, encourage and fight the good fight, and let's manage what's going on in our own lives well.



Happy Saturday, xoxxo        

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Tiara Tuesday: The Big Ol' Treadmill in the Bedroom.

In my efforts to plan for a half-marathon next February, we recently ordered a treadmill so I could work out here at the house (and save on the monthly gym fee).  Let me just say this:  the thing is huge.  It takes up a big section of my bedroom and it's hard to figure out our best furniture configuration.

However, I love being able to work out on my own schedule and not having to figure out how to work out after a long day at work, getting someone to pick up the kids (or they unhappily sat in the lobby of the gym while I worked out), getting dinner on the table, and just making it all happen.  My few hours at home in the evenings while everyone is awake is precious, precious time, and it's a scheduling challenge to make it all work.  I became unwilling to sacrifice that time with my family and spent a lot of time in angst over the whole thing.  But, I'm a firm believer in health and wellness after devoting two solid years to the workout lifestyle, so I had to figure out a way to make it work for my family.  

A decent machine is pretty expensive (we purchased ours during a store promotion and got it for 50% off, and I also purchased a few free weights and mat for strength training on my "off" days).  But, when we calculated the costs for gym and the trainer I was working with each week, we realized that it was going to be much cheaper in the long run.  We were paying about $65 a month for our gym membership and then an additional $250 or so every 8 sessions for the ability to work out with a trainer.  Purchasing at-home equipment is going to save our family about $1000 this year.  I recognize that not everyone can spend that sort of money, but we used part of our tax return to make these purchases.

I certainly don't always want to run.  There are many nights I want to drown my sorrows in peanut butter eggs (Easter is about the only time I eat peanut butter), but I want to be strong, too.  I want my girls to know what hard work and determination looks like--even if they inherit their father's metabolism.  So, I put on my shoes and run.  I fight the sluggish feelings and I make myself put in the time.  I'm not fast, I'm not sleek, and I'm not pretty when I'm done--but I feel like I've done something when I step off that treadmill at the end of the workout.

And that's what makes it all worth it.  

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