I woke before dawn, the little girl inside of me daring not to look at the window for fear the snow they promised hadn’t come. It isn’t that I wanted snow, its arrival reminds me that my back is weak, my ability to carry out physical tasks without weighing their consequences is no more. Snow means an absent Sean, hours of grueling maintenance he must undertake while I manage the girls, the house and the puppy. Soemtimes the snow and garbage seem easier.
Beso, our puppy, is as sweet as one could hope, a black and white cocker spaniel with more charisma and cuteness in each paw than most people have in their whole being. The girls adore him, but we are in a cacophonous moment in time—Finley and Briar seem to be constantly at one another’s throats, Avery is petulantly dissatisfied with being lodged firmly between you-are-old-enough-to-know-better and not-yet-a-reader. Add to that mix a puppy who, when excited, piddles, leaps, whimpers or runs laps and leaps not quite over the girls. Between boot puddles, puppy puddles and cup spills I seem to always be sopping something up from the floor. Beyond the bog-like state of our floors, the sprawl of school and work sometimes makes me wish for a shredder and a blow torch.
I love the art they bring home but there are 1, 2, 3 of them. I only have the one fridge, well actually there’s a second in the garage, but that’s where I forget extra gallons of milk, not hang artwork. My own pack-mule tendencies of shuttling my entire desk from home to work and back again inevitably leads to energy bills at the office and post-it note musings at home. I try to get organized, but it feels a bit like brushing the coat of a dog from ass to head. I’ve at least forgiven myself, allotted myself the leniency to stow things in a drawer for a week or two until it can be sorted. The same is true with the laundry, Sean said, “Promise not to do more loads than we can fold.” It was good, if annoying at the time, advice.
It’s only when something like a huge snowfall happens that I truly get that old hankering to bite off way the hell more than I can chew. I want to work hard, play hard and do it all. The truth is, I probably could, I could charge out on pure adrenaline and power through for a few hours, but the expense on the back end is too great to pay. And so I resolve to go back to the working against my grain to take manageable bites. I remind myself that not doing one thing isn’t a failure, because as I don’t shovel, I do something else. Sometimes I have to scream inside to convince myself that I am not slacking.
Now, I don’t want to set 2011 up to fail, but so far…I’ve gotten the snacks together, made lunches the night before, prepped and started dinner, and conquered the laundry. I have taken the time to dry my hair and iron my clothes. I’ve been plugging away at a silly little book and I’ve picked up a hobby. I know I am going to miss a permission slip or run out of bread for lunches, but this taste of not failing is what ia m going to focus on, because as I just saw in a tweet from Chookoolonks:
“We are what our thoughts have made us;
so take care about what you think.
Words are secondary.
Thoughts live; they travel far.”
I am not a failure, I am trying.
How about you? Will you tell me something you aren’t failing at this year?
Surprisingly hard to come up with something I don’t feel I’m failing at, even in 12 days. Well, I guess I didn’t fail my son on Monday when he asked me to stay home with him that night and spent the afternoon intermittently throwing up and curled on my lap sleeping. OK, I didn’t fail then. But today? Failure. They are bickering and yelling and the snow is SO heavy and my husband is on a business trip (oh lucky man) … failure, failure, failure. Even my coffee isn’t good! Waah!
Oh, Linsey, I hear you. Today is hard. Snow fun is a lot of work…we had that stomach bug here too. I am still trying to recover from the every 30 minute vomiting Briar suffered. Hang in there!
I promised myself less jeans and more dressy and so far I think I’ve succeeded. Lunches and laundry get the better of me though!
I have meant to say something, Amy. Your skirt/sweater ensembles have been adorable. Your effort is more than paying off, I mean really, how often am I speechless?
I’m aiming at letting myself BE, and the whole palms up thing. Not getting sucked into snide remarks, not getting overly ruffled about things I can not change.
Certainly not passing with an A, but not failing either. 🙂
I’m still not smoking. And I’m dabbling in the sacred art of mindfulness. Being right here, right now, to quote a rather excellent 90s pop tune.
I too love a good storm. It’s like I kick into this mode where purpose is more readily apparent than during times of calm . . .
No failure = finally letting go of the idea that I could get a certain project done & instead getting my stiff self to a yoga class. Hopefully together they will lead to less of me turning into the Mean Maleficent of my house.
I’m trying to let 2010 stay in 2010. When I feel the failure creeping up and hear myself asking the “What ifs” or “How comes”, so far I’ve been able to switch gears and channel my angst elsewhere. Seriously, I reprimanded myself outloud in the shower this week. I can only imagine what Derek thought when he heard me in the shower saying “Knock it off. Just cut it out. Move on already.”
I think gentleness with self is so precious. But so frikkin’ hard to do.
Sadly, I feel I’ve been failing at everything so far. But you’ve inspired me to try to be nicer to myself about it.