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Time for Reflection

This time last year looked very different for me.  It included early mornings, meditation, some reading, cooking, errands, writing.  I indulged in tending the vegetable garden, hanging flower baskets and flower beds and sitting in my small world of my back deck, visiting the birds, with a warm dog on my lap and one at my feet.  

I indulged in comfortable, stretchy skirts and tights, lots of bare feet that allowed me to move and flow and feel connected to my body and the world around me.  Visits with Sista and her Lemon on Thursdays provided support and love and laughter.  The backyard second home was up and Youngest and I indulged in fresh, outdoor, cricket serenaded sleepovers almost every night.

I smiled more, and people smiled back.  I slept better, ate better, exercised more and practised self-care so that I could be a better me---for me.   (Which has the lovely side effect of making you a better you for those around you!)

Now, I am back to work, fulltime, with a full plate of projects and a looming reassignment.  Youngest and Middle are both playing baseball up to 6 days a week between them and Oldest is living back home on an eight month co-op placement, commuting to the city each day via train.  Middle lives with us fulltime now and the house is busy and hectic with more mouths and hands and hearts and needs and wants and personalities.

"This is too much for you!"

"You are better than most people at work, you NEED to prove it!"
"No wonder
you are gaining weight, you stopped going to the gym so much loser!"
"See you have started forgetting things you are so busy, does this seem familiar? You are headed for another crash!"
"Do you know what you should be doing instead of sitting watching Youngest play baseball!!!!  You are wasting time!" 

Yolanda, who embodies them all looks at me with raised eyebrow, head tilted to the left, evaluating my ability to defend against this propaganda.  It's a strategy thing---when to let them loose so they can do the most damage.  

I see the challenge in front of me.  They are reaching out around her, eager to fly at me and grab hold.

But I SEE them.  And that is why she waits.  

I recognize that with work and baseball and dogs and three hungry, growing boys who require rides and food and clothes and clean things to wear.  I acknowledge that work is about to ask a whole lot more of me which may creep in to my carefully protected 9-5.  I see the numbers on the scale and I am aware that some of my food choices have been motivated by lack of time to prepare.

"This is too much for you!" becomes: this is a lot for anyone--I recognize some days may be stressful and I may be tired and I may not get it all done. That's OK!

"People wonder what value you have at work after being off for 2 years.  You need to prove yourself!" becomes, I have so many new tools to manage change and stress and people that it is reflected in my work. Who I am and what I do speaks for itself.  

"No wonder you are gaining weight, you stopped going to the gym so much loser!" becomes:  I can't possibly fit the same amount of gym time into my week, so I will go when I can, try to get out for walks at lunch and stay healthy.

"See you have started forgetting things you are so busy, does this seem familiar? You are headed for another crash!" becomes :  I AM busy.  I have more things to manage than I have in a long time.  I may forget things as I work to find better ways to remember everything. I will work on this.

"Do you know what you should be doing instead of sitting watching Youngest play baseball!!!! 

You are wasting time!"  becomes:  baseball time is a time to connect with my child and other parents and feel a part of a community.  Not only is it a social experience for me, I get to, not HAVE TO, spend time supporting Youngest in what has turned out to be, something he loves to do and is GOOD AT!!!  I cannot do it all and have made choices to let some things go to make room for this.  Baseball time is self-care time for me as well!

The IMGs fall silent.  I think I was shouting that last one.  Yolanda turns, and extending her arms, herding the crestfallen IMGs back to where ever they live when their voices are small.  

They'll be back ......

...and I'll still be here....

a work in progress.


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