Yesterday's over

"So let's start another story tonight..."

It has been a wild ride these past few weeks turned into months.
Things have been a blur.
Luckily, the organizer in me got all of our holiday obligations out of the way in November
so December has kept me grounded and present with our family.
I adore having December be a time of calm and love
traditions that make me feel full instead of the hustle and bustle.
But work has been, wow, just wow.

Which has led to tears
and tantrums
and exhaustion
and stress
and tired
and lack of patience
and so much anger
and resentment
and lack of time
and loss of love
and blackness
and blue
and empty.

"Let's start another story tonight..."

One in which I find a gracious loving heart
which is the way a family should be living together.
Words should not be biting
patience should not be gone before we all come together.
Love should be at the forefront of our hearts.

I have set on a path to be different in 2018 because I have lost my hum and I need to find joy again.

"And it still feels like, like the very first time, saw the world like a kid
Yesterday is over, let's write another story tonight."

I write a lot about how our lives are stories.
Books that we get to write a new page each and every day.
So many of my pages have been mixed up, so many times I have felt I don't have control of my pen
but the truth is, I am the only one holding it.
I am writing this story and I determine my ending.
So as I sat in on so many doctor appointments this week fighting back tears when asked simple questions like
"how are you?"
"any pain?"
"how is work?"
"any new symptoms we need to talk about?"
and then statements like
"I think it's clear to you that you have to stop"
"eventually you will be sick"
"I don't think this is anything other than you are ruining your life"
"so in summary, you are too stressed, need to change things immediately and get yourself back on track"

2017 didn't bring about the more I was looking for.
I didn't fulfill my word, I wasn't locked in.
In order to have things be different, I need to make actual changes, things cannot be the same.
I cannot continue down this path.
It's time Sabrina, it's been time for a while now, but honestly, you have to make a change.

"And it still feels like, like the very first time, saw the world like a kid
Yesterday is over, let's write another story tonight."

I also write about my second chance at childhood
and getting to see the world like a kid
for the very first time.
I, and I alone am allowing that time to vanish.
I am letting it slip through my fingers.
I, and I alone am allowing myself to be tied to things that don't matter.

Because in the end, the only thing that matters is time.
How I decide to spend it
who I decide to spend it with
what I no longer allow to take up my time
obligations I still will have
ones I will let go.

"I saw the world from the hill,
let's write another story tonight
I saw the world like a kid,
let's write another story, write another story tonight"


I lost my hum

There is something that happens when you say yes to everything.
There is something that happens when you think, sure, I can do that too.
There is something that happens when you keep on going and forget to eat, or breathe or think.
You lose your hum.

There is something that happens when you don't delegate.
There is something that happens when you take control of it all.
There is something that happens when you keep plugging along.
There is something that happens when you keep adding to your plate.
You take other things away.
You make your priorities out of whack.
And in the end, you lose your hum.

I first heard someone describe the hum on a Ted Talk and as soon as she opened, I immediately cried.
Tears of anguish
tears of guilt
tear of understanding
tears of being understood
tears of heartbreak
tears of wanting a different life
tears of realizing how beautiful my life is if only I stopped to look.

But, there is something that happens when you don't stop to look
you lose your hum.

I have acknowledged the hum before but in five minutes, I couldn't exactly dig deep...
So, here is how the hum goes...
I introduce myself by the number of hours I work in a week.
I wear it like a badge of honor.
I define my life by it.
Because a mom that loves her work and loves to work has to justify it, to someone and everyone.
And I do love to work.
I love working
I love the joy, the accomplishment, the tasks, the wave, the ride, the emotions, the winning.
I love to work.
It makes sense to me, I love that there is a right and wrong answer.
I love that I can get better at it.
I love that math makes the world seem real and I understand it.
I love that I get to be good at something.
I love to work.
And so, I do it all of the time.
I do it in my sleep
I do it instead of other things
I do it instead of things that I am worried I am not good at
I do it instead of sitting in quiet
I do it all of the time.

And the harder I worked, the better I got, the higher up I was promoted, the more work I was responsible for
and the hum got louder
and the harder I worked
and the more I was promoted
and the more I was responsible for
and the hum got louder
and so on and so on and so on.
Until, there was nowhere else to go.
And I was doing so much of the work
and I am a hard worker so she can do that too
and I won't let it fail so I work harder
and I won't give up so I keep going
and the hum got louder.

And then one day, it was gone.
The hum, the drive, the determination.
I lost my hum.
Suddenly, none of it made sense.
None of it seemed right.
Suddenly I was filled with regrets and what ifs and I should haves and what did I do and resentment and anger.
Because the hum made me think and feel
the hum was my guide.

So, I doubled down and searched everywhere for the hum.
I hear it when I am working, so I will work harder.
I hear it when the work makes sense so let me stay right here until it all makes sense.
I hear it when everything comes into focus so let me stare at the problem, I can find a solution again.
I just need to work harder.
But the hum was gone.
And I went into mourning.
I mourned a loss.
Of my work
my time
what I sacrificed
what I allowed to be sacrificed
I mourned me.

And then, I rooted to rise.
I ground down to rise up
and I found a new definition.
I found a new badge to wear.
I found other things to be proud of
and I learned to find a hum in different places.

It is still my go to
and when things get stressful and work becomes overwhelming
I still put my head down and forget to come up for air.
It is only when my depleted and exhausted and angry body climbs out of bed in the dark that I realize
I am here again.
I am in the bad place and I have to set a different plan in motion.
I have to determine a time, a limit.
I have to set a schedule of I will allow this for this amount of time and then,
I find my hum someplace else.

I cannot do it all
I cannot say yes to all
I cannot be it all
but I can still love the work
and the life.
I can say yes to my kids
I can read to them
I can train with them
I can journal with them
I can play board games
I can comb their hair
I can have quiet snuggles
I can be present when I am with them
I can make this life I asked for lovely
I can find my hum.

This Ted Talk changed me...http://www.ted.com/talks/shonda_rhimes_my_year_of_saying_yes_to_everything


Five Minute Friday - different

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on different.

I am looking forward to the new year
I think I always do
I see it as an opportunity
a chance to change
a chance to be different and act differently
a chance to make a difference.

And so, I started thinking and planning and really outlining how I want my life to look.
The changes I absolutely have to make
how I am on constant repeat
how I am responsible for most of the noise.
I started reading about how healthier, happier calmer people live.
What they hold on to, what they hold close, what they don't allow near them.

And so, I have started my list, my plans (which is very like me) and one of the things I am going to do differently is to use how I do things to my advantage, and no longer feel badly about them.
No longer feel less than but proud of my style and use it to work for me, not against me.

The first change, how I eat.
When I get stressed, tired, overwhelmed, one of the first things to go is eating.
I forget to eat, I run out of time, I get home and am starved because I have been depleted.
I am going to eat differently, create a healthy routine and eat more often.
I am going to work to find out what foods bring me energy, what foods bring me pleasure, what foods keep me going.

The second change, I am going to upgrade my tools and my life.
I always put me last and end up sacrificing so much time because I can just deal with it.
Everyone needs something when you are a parent and so things like your computer, your bags, your shoes, your suits, your stuff take a back seat.
I am going to go through my home and office and find the time crunches and I am going to upgrade my life.

Third, gratitude.
I am going to physically write down what I am thankful for.
I am going to focus on the good and joy of my day, the happy.
I am going to spend days/weeks/months not complaining.
I am going to help my family through this process and remind each of us, how lucky we are.

Fourth, the positive argument.
I am going to stop being resentful of "all I do" and I am going to make lists of things that others do for me too.
I am going to remember that my priorities, my desires do not match anyone around me, that does not mean they do less, they focus on different things.
Things that are not important to me, but are still needed.
Whenever I feel resentful, I am going to sit down and make the positive argument for those that I love.

Fifth, self-care.
I am going to focus on my quiet time.
do yoga
find space
write and pay attention to my blog.
Grab a cup of coffee alone
buy a shirt I want
buy a candle
make small changes to my own self-care.

Sixth, forgiveness.
Of myself.
Forgive my mistakes
do not stop breathing because I made them.
Do not feel them in my toes and make me shake.
Make an effort on focusing on the change I need to make next time and putting it to bed.
That means I have to face the mistake head to head
I have to really concentrate on my part, take responsibility and move on.

Seventh, connections.
I have close friends all over the place and I will make a concentrated effort to connect more.
With them
and my family
and my person.

Eighth learning more about me.
What is working
what needs changes
what about me can work to my advantage
what motivates me
what are my strengths/weaknesses
what can I use to move me forward?
How can I use that with all the people I encounter during my day
can I read them quickly too and figure out what makes them work and accept them for who they are?

Ninth pride.
I will write down and feel full of my accomplishments.
They are not random
they are not by chance.
I work hard, I will continue to find ways to work smart
but I sacrifice a lot to get to my goals and I will acknowledge them.
I am running two businesses
I am a mom of two
I own a house that we renovated and are turning into a home
I run long difficult races
I do triathlons
I run half marathons
I train alone
I volunteer
I take care of my community
I write a blog for my second chance at childhood
I document their childhood
I protect childhood, fiercely
I love my kids and connect with them
I set traditions that are their foundation
I show love
I should be proud of myself and stop the self-ridicule.

Tenth, a gracious and loving heart.
This one I stole from a friend that reminded me that all marriages should start and end on this note.
Your person puts up with your crazy and your lazy as much as you put up with theirs.
There is so much they are forgiving without an apology
so much they are letting go
so much they are trying to let roll off their back,
you have to have a graious heart sometimes and do the same.
You took them as is
you will grow together
the trick is growing in the same direction
growing with love
growing with a gracious loving heart.

Different, I am working on me this upcoming year and I am working to make things different for my life, my heart, and my soul.


Five Minute Friday - only

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on only.

I only have two children.
I only ran a sprint for my tri.
I ran a marathon, but only in my neighborhood so does it really count?
I only run a nonprofit.
I only have a really small number of clients for my business.
I only started my business a year ago.
I can only run a 9-10 minute mile.
I only
I only
I only myself a lot.

Maybe because I try and not take credit.
Maybe because I don't want to make it seem like I am anything special.
Maybe because I see the strength of others and sit watching them in awe so I have to think, I'm only doing this...not all of that.
Maybe because I am afraid to admit I too am strong
I too move mountains
I too labored and had 2 children
I too am surviving parenting
I too work an insane amount
I too need my new business to succeed
I too work really hard for my family
I too sacrifice a lot
I too can do so much
I too am a good mother
I too work on myself
I too cry and yell and fight
I too accomplish what I set my mind on
I too can.

Look at how different it all sounds when it is I too instead of I only.

I too can.



Enjoy the process

Sometimes in life, we rush.
We get through, we survive.
We work really hard to get to the other side of a bad day, week, month, a string of months.
Some have a string of bad years that they want to hurry past, put behind them.

Most forget to enjoy the process.

I am one of those people.
So many days are spent wishing this difficult time away.
The crunch of deadlines
the weight of my work
the start of my company
the space I am not afforded
the space I don't allow myself to take.

I forget to enjoy the process.

Because the process feels like the minutia.
It feels like the part we slug our way through to get to happier moments, times, events.
We want to move past the process of life.

The process of slowly moving through a store so your little one can look at every single toy and wish.
The process of washing the dishes and having your puppy at your feet.
The process of doing homework and watching how much they have grown.
The process of bath time and how small they look all wet.
The process of laundry and watching how big their clothes are getting.
The process of grocery shopping and how excited the whole family gets around food.
The process of cleaning and cooking and being.
The process of living as one, as a unit, as a team.
The process that is life.

I forget to enjoy the process.

I rush to check it off my list
I hurry through the parts I feel are sluggish and slow me down.
I want the last six weeks behind me, I want to move on.
I want the next five weeks to be done so that I can start to feel settled.

I forget to enjoy the process.

I forget that I am wishing my life away.
The life I wanted, asked for.
The one I actually love.
The one I allow to get too loud, too busy, too chaotic.

And what I end up doing instead is forgetting to enjoy all of the processes of life.

I will work on me more so that I can work on this.
I will allow more space and balance so I can breathe.
I will allow myself to be a part of the process a part of this life.
I belong with all of you doing all of this.


Five Minute Friday - near

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on near.

In this life, I keep those I love close.
I take them in and keep them and our memories together protected, tucked inside.
Because it has always been my nature to keep my group with me and carry them as I go.
Near or far, they are with me.

And although my love is scattered all over and most of my circle is no longer near me,
it is the thought of you no longer being physically near,
the thought of your little faces gone from my everyday,
that I will need a lifetime to move past.
Because parenting is building you to go out there, not stay here.
Parenting is creating people that go and do and build their own life and world.
Parenting is letting go, every single day, letting go a little more and a little more and a little more...
until eventually, you are somewhere out there, no longer near.

And just like with everyone else I hold, I will hold you close to me too.
I will keep you, I will have our memories to go back to
I will have this journey to lean on
I will have the warm feeling of you near as you go farther and farther away.

I live too much in the yesterdays and tomorrows, this I realize.
I have little faces that still believe in the magic of childhood and I am prepping for the goodbyes that will come.
Only because I need time to prepare and time to get myself ready for the inevitable.
I need to get my whole being ready for you no longer being near.

But that does not mean I am not intentional about our time.
In fact, it makes me more intentional, more present.
As soon as I feel too overwhelmed to sit quietly with you, I always leap to it will be tomorrow when she is no longer near.
As soon as I feel too distracted to play, I quickly realize how I will blink he will be off, far away doing wonderful him.

So, I sit close
I draw you near
I hold on to each moment, each second
because that warmth will keep you with me
even when you are far away from the life we built.


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