I have been working so hard ever since I returned from Florida. I recently met with someone who I had met with right before I left and shared my goal to open the community center. She reminded me that I had told her that when I got back from Florida I planned on hitting the ground running with this project - and it's really nice to look back and realize that I have done exactly that. I've come so far in the past 4 months, and now I'm even on the verge of finalizing my birth doula certification through DONA. Last night I completed the last requirement which was a breastfeeding class at the place I used to work at. Not only was it nice to complete this, it was also nice to see Kelly - my old boss.
I regret that I allowed myself to wear my heartbreak on my sleeve when she gave the lactation cookie idea to another company when I was working on it myself. I know that she was just thinking about her business. I see now that it wasn't something she did to purposely hurt me, that just happened to be the outcome. On my part in this, I felt victimized and therefore acted like a victim. Regardless of how valid I felt, I have learned a lot from that experience, especially since out of it I feel I lost the connection I once had with Kelly. Though I was hurting, I should have remained professional and not allowed myself to speak out publicly about how I saw it. I need to let these kinds of things be water under the bridge. I don't feel like things are the same between Kelly and I, but I am glad that I reached out and apologized for my part in it. I value her, and I always looked up to her as more than my boss...I think that is why this all hurt me so much. The more I focused on the things I did value in her, the easier it was to forgive and seek a peace with it. I do feel like things are now on the right track between her and I, and I seriously hope that they continue that way.
I haven't been writing in a while because, well, I've been sinking a bit. Well, more than a bit. Part of it has been sickness - it seems like someone in this house has been sick for the past 2 months straight. As I type this now I am still feeling the tail end of a serious sinus infection as well as a headache...but, it's better than it has been. The kids all just seem to pass it back and forth, back and forth. I'm hoping that will be over soon. I don't think it's ever been this bad in my house. I'm out of XanGo Juice for the time being, and I can surely tell. It seems that things got really bad for me a few days after I had none. I got sick and ended up backsliding into a depression again.
There are lots of contributors, but, mostly I have felt unsupported by my husband and some of my friends. Because of this lack of support (and even downright discouragement) I have had this feeling that I might be loosing myself. I felt that maybe because these people who were supposed to love me and try to understand and support me were the ones who weren't meant that I was doing something wrong. There have been many times that I have sat in this very chair and almost convinced myself to quit what I was doing. It would be easier, that is for sure. But, I'm realizing that it might not be me that needs to change course...that maybe the people who are unsupportive of me and what I'm trying to do (and even who I'm doing it with) are what might need to change in my life. This isn't easy, and it hurts. A lot. But, I am realizing that though I am the one changing, I am changing for the better. I am not out to hurt anyone and my intentions are purely motivated by bettering not only myself, but my community. And, as someone told me last night - things can't continue to move into my life without some things going out. I have to look at this and realize that I can not be everything for everyone and that maybe these relationships have served their purpose in not only my life, but theirs as well. Maybe, just maybe, it's time to simply move on. Not that I desire too, because I don't. Mourn my losses, but stay on track. That is the plan as of this moment, anyways. Whoever is there when all this is said and done will be there for a reason - "Those that mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind." As badly as I may desire to hold onto everyone tightly, I simply can not.
Having a house of three children that I am raising practically by myself hasn't been the easiest part of this journey, either. We're lucky if we see Shawn 3 hours in a day....and that's every day - 7 days a week - every week. My kids are all in different stages in life, so there are all kind of different demands placed on me. I am considering weaning Z because he is now 19 months and becoming very demanding about the boob. I feel as though I am not much more to him than just that. Calvin and Kiyra fight ALL. THE. TIME. They "hate" each other and "can't live with" each other. I know this is normal...but...it doesn't make it any less exhausting. Trying to balance home and work has been the number one biggest road block for me thus far. There are times when I am out and taking care of my business or doing something motivating where I feel pure inspiration and motivation to work and grow, then when I get home and walk through the door it seems as though there is nothing but guilt placed on me for being gone AT ALL and/or demands from every direction. This easily overwhelms me and instantly knocks me down from my previous feeling of high inspiration and belief in myself and what I'm trying to do. I think that I react with anger to this sudden exchange of emotional state because they are SO contrasting.
I tend to dread going home, dreading the "mom" role. It's so completely demanding of my entire being that I have a very difficult time allowing myself to do it. I fight it...but, I'm realizing that by choosing to fight it I am only making things harder on myself and my family. I haven't yet found a way to not feel trapped by my role as a mother, maybe because I have been one since I was 16, but - I am starting to see that I have to continue with my quest to find balance. Maybe sitting out in the driveway for a minute before going into the house to prepare myself for the role switch. If I sit there and visualize how I would like things to go when I walk through the door maybe I will better be able to emotionally prepare myself for a better reaction. I can not expect the kids not to be kids...and I know this is difficult for me because I was forced to grow up at such a young age, so, I don't really understand kids. But, I'm trying. I'm always trying....and that in itself can sometimes be exhausting.
One thing I've learned is to forgive myself. Although I have felt as though I have been backsliding over the past couple of weeks, I forgive myself. I realize that when obtaining massive amounts of information, putting just about all of my energy into growth and prosperity there has to be some down time to process this information and recharge my batteries. My only regret in this little low I've been in is that I haven't spent that time purposefully relaxing and processing. Instead I allowed my feelings and fears of loosing those around me to take me over. Almost loosing the information and progress I have obtained in the meantime. But, today, after facing these feelings and some of the relationships that I am in, I feel more on track. It's as if a weight has been lifted from me and now I can see the issues more clearly. I think I was just afraid I wasn't going to WANT to see what was there, I felt that if I didn't face it it would just work itself out - but energy is funny like that. It still remains and still effects us whether we want it to or not. By facing it at least now I can see the issues more clearly and things can be out in the open either to be addresses or worked out, or not. Either way, I know who I am again. I am again seeing the progress I have made and the things I am doing as right and positive. Because it coincided with my final course for finishing my certification, it was a conformation that I just have to keep on moving forward. I can't be everything for everyone, especially when those expectations of me are not made clear. It isn't my job to decipher peoples feelings or expectations of me - and that's OK, too. I have to just have faith that things will be OK and hold onto my love for the people who have been and are close to me. I choose to take the good things along with me and leave behind the negative. Learn from it, but forgive myself and others and leave it behind.
I always seem to obtain information or advice (or even horoscopes) that completely coincide with what I am currently going through. Yesterday I received an e mail from Jennifer Lee which had a lot to do with resting and recuperating. She had some great suggestions that I would like to share with you here because we all need to allow ourselves to have some down time. It's all part of the process of growth. As she put it - rest, recuperate and repeat.
- "Block off time on your calendar. I worked with one of my clients to commit to blocking off time after returning from a business trip or running a program. That helped to create some recovery and re-entry time following an intense period of work. I do the same thing and keep my days meeting free if I've just come back from a trip or completed a big project.
- Give yourself permission to take it easy. This can be super difficult for type A personalities. Yet, when you dial down your over-achiever personality, you can actually give yourself some space to just be and that's key to recharging.
- Embrace your inner Eeyore. I know you probably don't want to be a perpetual Debbie Downer or the dark-cloud-over-your-head Eeyore in the Winnie-the-Pooh stories, but sometimes, it's important to let yourself just be with the blues so you can move through it. In her new book Glad No Matter What SARK talks about turning toward your feelings so that you can navigate them more quickly.
- Pay attention to your body. What signals is your body sending you? Are you tired? Are you getting sick? Those can be clues to simply slow down.
- Book a vacation. Sometimes after completing a big project, you just need some time away. My hubby, our dog Emmett, and I took a short weekend trip up to Napa not that long ago. It was a great way to make sure we relaxed and had time together. You don't have to do anything extravagant. Even just a day trip to somewhere beautiful and inspiring can reinvigorate you."
"I am likely to miss the main event if I stop to cry and complain again. So I will keep a deliberate pace. Let the damn breeze dry my face. Oh, mister wait until you see what I'm gonna be. Here it comes, a better version of me."
Here's to TODAY.