This is Day 15 of the 31 Days of Small series.
There is a pet phrase that travels around in the South when people don't know what else there is to say about a situation they can't seem to change:
Some folks dislike this phrase because it indicates that the person is not going to do anything to change whatever it is that's bothering them (My boyfriend of 3 days is cheating on me again. It is what it is*). There are people that use this phrase more often than they should i.e. Walmart had a thousand people in line and one lane open. It is what it is.
Other people see it as an observational phrase when there is an actual issue, and the resulting bad feelings are just a product of that situation:
Feeling tired at work after recovering from a hurricane? It is what it is.
Feeling like you're running around in a thousand different directions with your teenagers? It is what it is.
Children at school having a hard time keeping themselves together because they do not have adult advocates, medication, and/or rules at their homes? It is what it is.
Aging and ailing parents/family members calling all the time and keeping you extremely busy? It is what it is.
Toddlers and diapers and work and messy houses and crazy hair? It is what it is.
Sometimes, it really is what it is. Sometimes there are situations that really have no other options except dealing with them and their accompanying stresses. You have to take care of your sick family members. You cannot sit down and throw a fit at work when you need to pay the bills. Your kids will drive you bananas, but you've got to take care of them.
I think it's important to recognize that bad situations happen to all of us, and those situations do not define us nor our worth to the rest of the world. Bad situations happen to everyone--and sometimes it feels like some people get extra shares of the crapload. I have watched families go through agony and back this past year and they keep moving forward. I've also encountered people who believe that every single day is a bad situation and their negative responses make it difficult for others to take them seriously.**
It is exhausting to do all of these things well, and some days the Taco Bell drive thru will be your very best answer to the world. It is ok to recognize that you are very small and you won't win all of the battles every day. It's ok to recognize when your situations are overwhelming and incredible and you are just barely keeping your head above water.
Because sometimes it really is what it is.
*Mama A says: Girl, you better tell that boy to get on with his ridiculous self. And then you need to look in the mirror and tell yourself to get it together and have some standards for yourself.
**Mama A says: Darling, you is what it is. Stop talking.