Week Two: Time to calm the F*** down.

“I have so much chaos in my life, it’s become normal.  You become used to it.  you have to just relax, calm down, take a deep breath and try to see how you can make things work rather than complain about how they’re wrong.” ~Tom Welling

Last week, when restarting this blog, I thought that each Sunday I should have a theme to better document the changes within myself (and my family, and ultimately, my world) that I am hoping to make throughout the week.  During the week I can write about whatever strikes, but Sundays are a time for reflection, both inward and outward.  Hopefully I can use this day and time to stay focused on things I really want to accomplish.

Last week I decided to focus on “cutting the crap” out of my life.  I planned to:

  1. Slowly, but surely, cut out processed foods (crap) for me and the family
  2. Stop having such a crappy attitude at home around my husband and kids and at school around my co-workers and “kids”
  3. Stop making crappy excuses for things I don’t want to do: going to the gym, cleaning the house, etc.
  4. Stop spending money on extraneous crap that I just don’t need: Starbucks coffee, more clothes that won’t fit in a month, eating out.

While I realize that these are ultimately life changes I am striving for, I feel like I did good for the first week.  I definitely ate less processed foods and more fruits and veggies.  I tried my hardest to stop spending money (on extraneous items) and stop making excuses when it’s time to make the hard decisions.  The most challenging one for me, the one that will ultimately take the most time to work into my daily life and achieve, was changing my attitude.

I promise I’m trying, but my goodness it’s hard.  I mean, seriously, look at the blog posts I wrote this week.  They really don’t have a “positive” ring to them.  I’m still trying to gossip less, build-up my relationship with my kids, and re-build my relationship with my husband.  The secret is to not get discouraged.  Rome wasn’t built in a day.  The problem is I get to antsy and excited for everything to change RIGHT NOW that I tend to be a little…intense (to put it nicely).

This week is, while I’m continuing to work on last weeks items, I am also going to work on this: Trying to Calm the F*** Down!  I get so worked up about all the little things in my life that I am sure I am missing out on some truly wonderful moments.  I need to learn better to roll with the punches, dial down the control freak within myself, and just breath.  I need to yell less, laugh more, and just try to enjoy living.  Every day we are a little closer to the end of the world, not matter how much I freak out, or how much I worry.  It’s inevitable.  I might as well enjoy the ride while I can.

I realize this is all easier said then done, but knowing and planning is half the battle, right?

Sunday Musings: The Weekly Write-Up

  • Week 1: Cut the Crap
  • Week 2: Calm the F***Down

I literally lost a toddler

“Any experience can be transformed into something of value. Everything depends on the way you look at things. You cannot have the success without the failures.”

Ok, well maybe not literally.  But what I mean is that I’ve lost enough weight in the past three and a half months to equal the size of a toddler.  A four year old, anyway.  My four year old to be exact.

A third of me is so proud of how far I’ve come. 37.5 pounds since mid-January is awesome and I know it.   I’m looking better and feeling better, mentally and physically.  Another third of me feels like 37.5 is just a small drop in a very large bucket and I feel daunted by how far I still have to go.

The other third of me simply wants cake.  All kinds of cake.

I’m trying hard to stay positive and motivated (see previous blog post about my focus this week) but it really is hard to keep the momentum going.  Some days I am excited about going to the gym or going to a class, and other days the thought of going to the gym makes me want to curl into a ball and go to sleep.

I guess the important thing is to remember why I started this in the first place: to make sure I am around long enough to see my boys grow up and become amazing.

And that is motivation enough for me.

What You Don’t Want to Hear (And What I’m Ashamed to Admit)

“A mother who is really a mother is never free.” ~Honore de Balzac

Sometimes I really hate my job.  I’m not talking about my “9-5” job that,not only do I get paid for, I also get to leave.  I’m talking about the job I have to do every minute for the rest of my life.  Parenting.

As I pointed out, I’m not proud to admit this fact, nor is it something you you actually want to hear (especially those of you who do not have children).  Parenting is supposed to be this magical thing that you cherish each and every moment.  Chubby cheeked little cherubs love you, marvel after you, and touch your soul in ways that are not even imaginable.  And it is like that…sometimes.  Other times it plain sucks.  Actually, I can go one better, it F****ING SUCKS.

In order to understand this better, I should tell you about my day.  I had a pretty good day at work, headed to the gym and had a moderately good workout.  The sun was shining, the birds were singing and I was excited to go home and spend the rest of the day with all my boys outside playing.  And then I walked in the door.  Immediately, the four year old (M) started screaming at me about how I didn’t bring home a treat in my lunch bag.  When I mentioned going outside, the 2 year old (O) screamed because he didn’t want to wear socks with his shoes.  When they finally made it outside,  O ate something unidentifiable off the ground.  During dinner,  M didn’t want what I made (though it was exactly what he asked for!!!!).  When I got up to clear the dishes,  O projectile vomited everywhere in the dining room.  Once the husband got him upstairs, it was time for M to take his antibiotic…which he hates.  I tried to make it easier, but after taking one sip, he proceeded to projectile vomit all over the dining room as well…after I had just cleaned up the first round.

At that point I lost it.  Like, really lost it.  I broke down.  I cried.  I yelled.  It was not pretty.

M yelled at me that he loved me but I was not doing the right thing.  I yelled back at him that he wasn’t either.

I finally got him upstairs and into the tub and then proceeded to the basement with all the gross clothes and table items.  I managed to get them started in the wash before I completely fell apart.  I just didn’t want to be here anymore.  I didn’t want this job anymore.  It was talking all my strength not to jump in the car and run away, far away. I WANT OUT was all I could think.

And, of course, the icing on the cake of all of this is that my husband remained calm and collected throughout the entire ordeal, even while bathing the two screaming, vomit covered boys.  This made me me feel even crappier about losing it and pretty much made me hate him in that moment.  I sat downstairs for a few minutes, got myself together and then went back upstairs, ready to bake the cupcakes I promised for snack at M’s school tomorrow.

This whole ordeal, from the minute I walked in the door to the minute I walked upstairs to begin baking, lasted literally 45 minutes.

I realize that these are not typical days for us.  Usually, things are pretty calm or, at the very  least, a controlled chaos.  And for the most part I love being a mom.  I love my kiddos more than life itself.  When I think about them not being around I get panicky and know my life wouldn’t not be as complete as it is now without them in it.

But still, sometimes I get so jealous of my friends that seem so free.  I gaze at them wistfully when they don’t have kids to feed or husbands to get home to. And it’s not like I want to leave them (I know I would miss them in the first second out the door).  It’s just that I want them all to not exist in the first place.  Just for a day, or even an hour.

Sometimes being a mom (and a wife) sucks and it’s OK to think that way.

And while I know it’s not something others want to admit in the open, I know I’m not alone.

Worry Weary

“Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorry.  It empties today of its strength.” ~Corrie Ten Boom

I tend to worry…a lot.  Correction: I never really thought of myself as a worrier.  I always thought of myself as a realist.  I simply would think of upcoming scenarios, picture the worst possible thing to happen, and then hope for something better.  I always had this feeling that if I wasn’t worrying about something, karma would have a way to kick me when I’m least expecting it, as if to say “You thought you were safe, sucker!”.

The problem is, so much of what I worry about is way beyond my control.  I worry about all the normal stuff: money, kids, marriage woes and then stuff that is so unimportant: classroom observations, perceptions of others, and the biggest one: the past.  I would worry so much about things that happened in the past or people being mad at me for one thing or another that I literally feared almost every decisions I made, knowing that somehow it was going to be the wrong one.

I never realized how much this really affected my whole outlook until today.  I was driving home from the gym and my mind was wandering.  I had had a pretty good workout, was in a good mood, and was ready to be home and see my boys.  My mind immediately went to that dark place: worry.  I began scanning everything in my mind, trying to figure out what I should be worrying about at this minute because, of course, I should always be worried about something.  And when I couldn’t readily think of something my mind went to the even darker place: fear.  If things were going OK today, they couldn’t last this way for that long.  Something bad is bound to happen and I just have to hunker down and wait for the other shoe to drop.

By why?  Why I am constantly worrying and thinking “bad” things are bound to happen to me?  Do they really or do I simply feel that I am not worthy of “good” things happening.

I always seem to be looking at the world thinking that the grass is greener somewhere else.  What’s wrong with my grass right here?  Sure, it has a few weeds, but some of them are actually pretty.  It just needs a little TLC and some time in order to “get greener”.  But just because there are weeds does not mean I deserve them to be there.  And when there are no weeds, it does not mean more are going to grow.  They may.  They may not.

In a nutshell I know what I have to do.  I need to (wo)man up, stop worrying so much, stop EXPECTING terrible things to happen,  and when they do (because they may) embrace them, fix them, and move on.  I may even have time to read that new book I’ve been wanting to start with all the time I’ll save.

Back on Track

I’ve been back and forth on whether or not to switch my blog over to wordpress from blogger.  I like to design a little more from wordpress, as well as the overall simplicity.  While I realized I’m not a “writer”, I’m hoping to take my blog the next level and really hope to streamline my posts and bring some consistency and an overall theme to my weekly/monthly posts rants.

I found a list saved on my iphone from December of the ways I wanted to change things about myself, my life, my world.  There are so many random things on this list: be a better wife,go to the gym more, run a 5K, get out of debt, start an herb garden, that I am actually laughing as I read it.  It must have been a stream of consciousness list (much like this blog post).  I see that I am accomplishing some of these things slowly but surely, and that is making me a little more motivated.  Other things, though, I feel like I have given up on entirely, or simply forgotten that they were problems that needed addressing.

What really gets me is that this list was the original reason I started my blog; as a way to document the changes I was making for the greater good, whether that greater good was the world, my family, or simply me.  In order to accomplish this I need to be more organized, more focused and more aware.  I’m hoping to come up with weekly themes and chronical the changes I am able to make each week.  I’m hoping to blog AT LEAST once a week, but I’m aiming for more.  Each theme will begin on Monday and end on Sunday and I’ll have some time to reflect what I was able to accomplish, what I can keep doing, and what is just not going to work for me and my family

Without further hesitation, because I know you all are all on the edge of your seats, this weeks theme is: Cut The Crap.  During the week I hope to “Cut the Crap” in a variety of ways.

  1. Slowly, but surely, cut out processed foods (crap) for me and the family
  2. Stop having such a crappy attitude at home around my husband and kids and at school around my co-workers and “kids”
  3. Stop making crappy excuses for things I don’t want to do: going to the gym, cleaning the house, ect.
  4. Stop spending money on extraneous crap that I just don’t need: Starbucks coffee, more clothes that won’t fit in a month, eating out.

It seems like a lot, especially in the beginning, but this is all a process and it has to start somewhere.  Anyway, I like a good challenge.

Jump?

I have been thinking a lot lately about the directionality of my life.  The end of the school year always seems to do that to me.  Or maybe it’s the springtime, I don’t know.  Point is, I have been thinking a lot about the big question of  “Is this it?”.  Half the time I’m ok with this being “my life” for the rest of my life.  They other half of the time I feel completely claustrophobic; thinking what’s the point in going on, if this is really “it”.

A friend recently asked me what I would do with my life if fear, money, daily constructs were not an object.  I easily responded that I would quit my job in order to stay home with the kids and spend more time with , them.  I felt like this was a good answer and one that I truly meant.  She then responded with “That’s what you would do for the kids.  What would you do with YOUR life; for YOU?”  And with the question I became silent, because frankly I have no idea.

Long story short, I have commitment issues.  If you know me, you know that this is true.  I have a very hard time committing to people, even friends.  I’m one of those people who doesn’t have a lot of friends, but has a few very close friends.  A shrink would probably classify this as a “fear of abandonment”; I tend to leave people before they can leave me.  Unfortunately, my commitment issues, or fear of abandonment, is not limited to people.  I tend to quit ideas, hobbies, jobs, and  many other things.  Some may say I just to prefer to be well rounded, but we all know that it a lie.  I’m constantly scared of missing out, or afraid that something better might come along.  Deep down, I know it’s also a fear of failure that makes me quit.  I took four languages in high school and (except for french), I can’t say more than a few words in any of them.  I learned how to knit, but gave up beyond simple scarves.  I learned the violin, clarinet, and flute in one year, but can’t remember much of anything.  I transferred colleges three times and grad school once, thinking there was a better experience somewhere, yet winding up exactly where I started.  Let’s not even count how many houses/apartments I’ve lived in since graduating high school 15 years ago (BTW – it’s 12, not including the 2.5 years I lived in a dorm)

This was a few hours ago, and I am still thinking about this question.  And, honestly, I still have no answers.  Basically, what I have come to accept is that life is short.  Unfortunately, I seem to struggle with the age old questions: should we make the best with what we have or should be simply go all in for what we really want?  And really, when I figure out WHAT I really want,  will I ever have the courage to close my eyes, hold my breath, and jump?