So, I was going to do a Wordless Wednesday post today, but it’s my birthday today (celebrating 29, again!), which seems to be a good time to sit down and reflect a bit and have a chat. Or rather, talk to the blog-o-sphere and have people listen/read. 🙂 It’s been another crazy year, but I feel pretty good…extremely thankful, for what I have and where I am. I had a heart to heart with a good friend last week and realized I’ve sort of come to a point in my life where I’m happy, I’m able to make deliberate decisions and feel good about them. Sound crazy? You just wait.
She always wondered at how I *seemed* so patient and always seemed to not let things bother me. Well, things bothered me that day, so there ya go, it’s not all rainbows and unicorn farts here on One Dog Woof. But in the midst of being bothered, I realized, or was able to put into words, or rather, she put into words for me, that I know exactly what bothers me, and why. It’s because I can’t change another person. Sometimes I wish everyone is able (occasionally) to see the big picture, understand what is important to them, have confidence in their own values and priorities, and make deliberate decisions after thinking through the consequences of their actions.
taken by Candeo Photo
I owe a lot of this to being a mother. I was told early on to nap when your baby naps, but I didn’t always follow that advice, especially at the beginning. I ran on adrenaline, and thought that I needed to be as productive as I ever was, until I got a bit delirious from exhaustion (not literally) and just wasn’t very AWARE. I don’t remember very much from my first several months as a mother, and that makes me sad. I realized that there are things that I will need to give up, to overlook, to let slide, in order for me to appreciate the time I have with a very fast-growing bundle of love. So laundry can wait, and those dust bunnies following me around the house will just get bigger and multiply. When J naps, I have to choose whether to clean, to work, to craft, to blog, or to nap with him. And I am OK with slowing down and napping, if only to survive the hours until bedtime. I do admit there are days when I count down the minutes until it’s bath/bedtime, don’t you?
I’ve also learned that if I am stressed, J is stressed. If I am calm, or stay calm, there is a much higher chance that one little episode will not turn into a temper tantrum crying fest. I’ve learned to moderate my voice when speaking to my son, that patience works better than yelling. You should go check out The Orange Rhino Challenge – I absolutely love the concept behind it – where a mother has challenged herself to not yell at her kids for 365 days. I am not officially participating (because holy cow, 365 days? I’m not a saint!), but it is constantly in my head to make the conscious decision not to yell; to breath instead and see the bigger picture. Got peed on? No biggie. Tracking in dirt? Refusing to wear shoes? Pulling my pants and screaming for dinner? Throwing toy cars? There’s some quiet talking, some disciplining, but no yelling, which often means, no crying, and everyone has survived another day. My new motto with all of J’s eccentricities – “this too shall pass”, for better or for worse.
These lessons learned as a mom has extended into my non-motherhood life as well, into my life as a wife and working woman. Can’t find keys? No biggie, they will turn up, but you’ll probably be late to your meeting, tough bananas. Grass not mowed? It’ll be there tomorrow, and really, it’s not as bad as THAT neighbor, who apparently “mows” with a weed whacker. The chores will get done, maybe not precisely when I want to, but it’s all about cost and opportunity cost, isn’t it? Unless the parents are visiting, then everything MUST GET DONE.
There’s a guy at work. Well, those of you who know me will know I’ve been b**ing about this guy for a long time, but more and more, he doesn’t bother me anymore. He is who he is, as is all of us, and there’s nothing I can do to change him, so even though I am beyond frustrated, I will adapt, and learn to let it go. What’s that phrase?
God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.
Does that mean I’m wise and serene now? Not even close, but I may actually be on the right track? I know that crafting and blogging make me happy, but am able to put it away when there are more important things, as well as go back to it when there are less important things!
I feel like I used to react to my environment, even when I thought I was being an anal-retentive little gnome and trying to plan every minute of my day. I was always reacting because I wasn’t making decisions about where I wanted to go, and what I wanted to happen. I hope everyone can understand that you can affect change in your own life, and you actually do have some semblance of control in what is otherwise a complete circus (tent available from Ikea!).
Remember those rants about not having enough followers on my blog or about not having time to exercise? It’s all good now. I craft and I write because I like it, and if people like what I write, then they will be here, as friends and followers. If not, oh well! And about not exercising? My time, my choice, my buddha belly.
I can’t believe I’m publicizing this picture with no makeup and looking all doofy…but it’s me, for reals.
And now for the big disclaimer – this is not me every day. I still get frustrated, yell, or scream to high heaven, really. It’s work to always make deliberate decisions and to weigh opportunity costs, but it’s also becoming more of a habit.
Well, if you’ve made it this far, thank you for reading my little stream of consciousness blather! Happy Hump Day and I hope everyone has a wonderful Father’s Day weekend!