The view from the window…a cold, grey, drizzly day. No blue sky today.
It’s been a while, but I have an excuse
It’s been a very long time since my last post, but I have an excuse. I have a number of excuses. Let’s rewind a bit first, before I get into that.
2017 started out as such a breath of fresh air, compared to the heaviness that seemed to define 2016, for me, for so many others, like the whole world. New Year’s dawned and I felt such an immediate spark of creativity, of boundless energy, like “let’s do this”! I made lists, and plans, and resolutions! Even signed up for a course on blogging (Blogging from the Heart by the lovely Susannah Conway…I will write a review soon, but suffice to say it was/is amazing! I’m still working my way through.)
And then I was quickly sidelined by yet another virus that left me just enough energy to go between the bed and the couch. Since November, I had been sick on and off with a nasty cold that kept jumping from my head to my chest and back again. I’d miss a few days of work, only to return and then miss another few days. I’d get better for a week, then right back to being off sick again. Even a last-minute chance at a vacation to the Grand Canyon, and I spent half of it sick. (That’s a HUGE pocket of bliss right there, and I promise pictures and a post soon!)
All told, I used a year’s worth of sick days between November and February! (And trust me, I know I am privileged to have paid sick days, and I don’t take that for granted). I finally went to my doctor and begged her to fix me. Her answer was that the stress had finally caught up to me and my body had had enough. Rest was her prescription. And I have a new respect for vitamins, I’ll just say that!
Whoa there girl…slow down
In hindsight, I believe it was the universe’s way of acknowledging all my grand plans and visions for the new year, but forcing me to slow down. If you haven’t noticed, I do have a tendency to rush headlong into a new project, only to abandon it shortly thereafter (have you met my blog?). So maybe this time I was meant to approach my dreams from a more tortoise like perspective…with the focus on going at a slow and steady pace, rather than the rabbit who rushes towards the finish line.
And admittedly, I have fallen into the bad habit of coming up with excuses why I can’t get back to blogging. There’s the big excuses… I’m a single mom to two boys. I’m in a nasty custody battle with my ex-husband. I work full-time shift work in a high stress job. My work schedule and custody schedule mean my weeks are eight days, not seven days, like the rest of the world, so scheduling my stuff and the kids’ stuff is challenging. My parents live with us now (there’s a whole other blog post/series/novel for another day). And there’s the little excuses… Groceries to buy, laundry to wash, lunches to make, kids to drive and drop. I have to declutter the house, clean the house, set fire to the house and start fresh so I don’t have to clean or declutter it. Any number of excuses.
What do Danielle Laporte and I have in common?
Last week, I was taking some time for myself one morning after the oldest boy got off to school (aka procrastinating on the house). Going through my emails, I clicked on the new one from Danielle Laporte, entitled “Lies. Truth. Porn. Friendship. Sickness. Motherhood. And softness. One of the truest conversations I’ve had.” There’s a “suck you right in” title if I’ve ever heard one! It’s a recorded conversation she had with Jono Fischer, founder of the Wake Up Project. It’s a long listen, almost two hours, but early in, I knew I had to listen in full. And listen more than once.
She spoke of being a mom, of so many other moms out there in the world, who are working while raising kids, who are literally fried, and yet are still putting stuff out there in the world, great stuff, inspiring stuff. She also spoke of the guilt we all experience as moms (she does a great impersonation of Arianna Huffington, “When they take the baby out, they put the guilt in”), that sometimes overwhelming guilt, that we don’t spend enough time with our kids, that we don’t always put them first, that we are completely screwing them up. There’s so much more in the conversation…definitely worth the listen!
The big takeaway for me? I knew Danielle Laporte was a single mom, raising a teenage boy. But here she talked about being a mom and a business woman, and making her schedule work, when she shares custody of her son with her ex on an 8 day rotation…her son is with her for 5 days, and then goes to his dad’s house for 3 days. The same schedule I live with. Cue jaw drop.
What were my excuses again?
Sure, I am nowhere in the same league as Danielle Laporte, but hey, we share the same custody schedule (and we’re both Canadian…but I digress). She works with it, around it, and certainly doesn’t use it as an excuse why she can’t do what she does. And lots of other fierce moms out there are working with their own schedules, challenges, life. They are sometimes fried. And yet they get up every day, take care of the kids, and still do some amazingly beautiful, creative, inspiring things!
I have been full of excuses why I can’t write, can’t get to this project or that goal, why I can’t hit “post” on this blog. But there will be days when the sun isn’t shining, when the boys don’t go to their dad’s this week, and yeah, we all know about the housecleaning, and exhaustion is just normal. Done is better than perfect. If I keep waiting until life isn’t busy or chaotic or stressful, I’ll never do the things I love but feel I don’t have time for. I have to stop the excuses, because they aren’t really excuses. They are choices. So what’s my next choice?
P.S. What do you want to do, that you keep making excuses not to? Comment below, or send me an message!