I had to miss my mama renew group last night. I’m still sick, spending my nights coughing, coughing, coughing, and was in no shape to be there. But that doesn’t let me off the hook on the personal work. I’m doing this discussion group / class, but it’s one of those experiences where you get out of it what you put into it. So tonight, once Cameron’s breathing had settled into his comfortable quiet snore, I curled up in the comfy chair with the book, a glass of zin, and Nimoo.
I’m not talking about trying to balance the red wine on my knee. I mean the life balance type of balance. These last few months I’ve felt so out of balance I might as well be on the floor, having fallen there. The analogy given in the book is a hamster wheel – but I feel like I’m in one of those gerbil balls, clear plastic, frantically running through the room but unable to really connect.
What is important to me? What are my priorities, and am I living my life as if they are?
Cameron, of course. I want to be there for him, but loving, offer him wonderful opportunities, play with him, get him outside, teach him to love and seek out adventure, but also to cherish home and family. Family. They are an enormous priority. “A” consistently throughout our relationship tried to interfere, to draw me away, to ridicule my desire to be close with family, to tell me that they weren’t really that important to me or else I’d do X, or that I was obviously not important to them or else they’d do Y and Z. Which usually involved money. Woah … so didn’t mean to go there in writing this out. I want to live my life connected to my family, in contact with them, so that they know and feel that I love them dearly. Friends – similar to family, and similar background. My work in itself isn’t a priority … but rather my own performance at my job is. Does that make sense? Maybe I shouldn’t say that in a blog that some people at work know about and read (hi). I haven’t been living up to that lately, and have been a little spinny and out of control. Yet I’m so close to being back where I want to be – so all is not lost. Looking after myself is a priority, though I have not been treating myself as if it were.
So, what to do?
Some areas of my life I’m doing very well at.
Cameron, for instance. We have adventures on a regular basis, some small, some major. I do think that I’m teaching him to look at life as one big adventure, to find ways even in our everyday lives to find excitement in living and in the world around us. Overall, he is an interested, happy, loving little sweetheart.
My work I’m getting control over. Caught up in one major area, working on another, and clear goals are set and listed.
Family in some ways I think I’m doing okay with, though there are areas I could improve. One of my ‘list’ items is to send cards. That’s something I’ve failed miserably at so far – but the year is nowhere near done. Dad and Janice I don’t call anywhere near as regularly as I could. Betty I’m sure felt a bit put aside for a while a month-ish ago. And Nana … I don’t call anywhere near as often as I’d like. So … no real reason behind it. I just need to find the energy and time to do it. Friends. Ohdear. I’ve really let some friendships that I cherish slide under my radar. But I do know that real friends are those who understand, who ‘get it’.
Ahhh. Energy and time. Right. Anyone got one of those doohickies that whatshername had in Harry Potter? That let her take extra classes by messing with time? Yup, I need one of those. On a more serious level, I know a few things that will help. First, I’ve already had one night on my own. Time soon for a weekend! Second, sleep needs to be a priority. Lately my need for alone time after Cameron goes to sleep has been winning over sleep. I need to find a better balance there. Third, well, Summer is on its way. That means colds and coughs will be less likely. Effing viruses have sapped a lot of my energy lately. All of this does come under looking after myself. As does getting OUT to do things. Martha, wife of one of my friends at work, has contacted me about going climbing. I need to get ON that, pronto.
Okay. So, those are my priorities and where they stand right now.
But wait. What is really important, right now? How do those priorities above fit together?
Two things. Raising Cameron as I think he deserves to be raised, and maintaining my sanity. These are closely linked to each other, of course.
Priority one: Continue getting Cameron outside after daycare. Continue finding adventures to do on the weekend.
Priority two: Self care. Write. Take bubble baths. Take time off. And, yeesh, get to bed!
Other ideas for priority two (that might also help in other areas) include:
Taking advantage of my work’s coaching resources. They do talk about coaching including work-life balance.
Accept that the nature of my work is that I’ll always feel like some area is slipping. It’s like juggling. Keep a whole lot of balls in the air at one time.
Investigate counseling. My thoughts continually return to events of the past, people in my past. Time to do a bit of work on that.
Holidays. In the past I’ve saved up holiday time, hoarding it, afraid of using it. It’s time to stop that destructive behaviour. I’m planning a holiday for early August. I’m also hoping to take a quick trip down to San Francisco. There’s Christmas. This still leaves me, I think, five days. I think I’ll give myself every other Friday off through the summer.
Okay, that’s it for now. A little insight into how my mind functions, as I work through the reading for the month. Time to have a shower and get to bed … before midnight!