1
Nov

Five Minute Friday - last

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 last.

Go.

It's my last two months of a 20-year career. It's my last chance to turn around and take it all back and tell them I just want to stay because I love my job. Because I love my work. Because I love what I do. Because, despite how I feel and how I am being made to feel, I am good at this. I belonged here. This was my home and as much as I sacrificed and did for them, this job made me.

It's my last two months of not having to depend on my business for my living. It's my last chance to say we can't do this after all, I don't know what we were thinking but I was wrong and I'm sorry and I take it all back. Because it's my last two months of being secure and now it's all me.

It's my last two months of holding down both jobs, doing two really big things at the same exact time while still trying to be a decent mom, bride, friend, person...and still hold on to who I am.

It's my last two months to dream and really think and plan out what I want it all to look like now. What I am going to spend my energy on, what I am going to eliminate. What I am going to have to walk away from. What I am going to be able to fully embrace.

It's my last two months and I am having a lot of feelings. I am on this roller-coaster of emotions and there has been a lot of crying, a lot of overthinking, a lot of should haves, a lot of fear, a lot of lasts. My lasts.

Stop.

4
Oct

Five Minute Friday - listen

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 listen.

Go.

Lovies, mom isn't a very wu-wu person, I live much more in the practical. But over the last several years, I have stopped to really listen to the universe and figure out what it is trying to tell me. Or what it is trying to protect me from. Or what it is asking me to let go, or get over. Or what it is asking me to pay attention to. So, maybe that's wu-wu, maybe it's getting older, maybe it's setting up priorities and owning my life more, maybe it's giving up control and realizing I'm not in charge anyway, maybe I have been talking for so long that it's finally time to listen.

So, I am taking in the sounds of rain. I am watching the fall season land in NY with all of its glory. I am listening to my intuition tell me something is off. I am listening to you talk more, really connecting with you several times a day and listening all about your day. I am listening to what is important to you, right now and today vs yesterday. I am listening to our puppy when she is asking to be paid attention to or be run and played with. I am listening to my body when it is telling me it is tired. I am listening to my mind when it is telling me the same. I am listening to my feet, legs, arms, and muscles when they are telling me to stop fighting and running and climbing and pushing...instead, just take it in.

In my year of change, I have spent time listening to you universe. I am still a little rocky, shakey, and unsure of all you are trying to tell me. I am still trying to figure out if this is you talking or life just being life. I am still trying to figure out if I need to back off or show up harder. I am still trying to figure out how to be okay without being the tightly wound me. I am still trying to put it all together.

But lovies, I hear you too. I see the change in you when I changed. I see how much stronger we are, how little tension there is, how much more loving we can be. I see that you too needed to be heard and were asking me to listen and pay attention. I see that I needed to regroup, restructure and reprioritize. I'm listening lovies, I'm going to continue to do so.

Stop.

27
Sep

Five Minute Friday - success

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 success.

Go.

It has changed for me. What I think has changed the most is success now means I am healthy, I am calmer. I am slower. I am quieter. I am fighting uphill less. I am hurting less. I am softer. I am kinder to myself. I am treating myself like I have always treated others. I am starting to give myself the benefit of the doubt. I am going to give myself permission to pause. I am gentler with my words and my thoughts.

Success is no longer wearing my fighting gloves. It's no longer in the constant battle with me to win a race only I am in. I am no longer competing with myself because I am going to be okay. It's no longer reaching for things I don't want to grab and hold. It's no longer screaming on the top of my lungs in my head and having a pounding headache at the end of the day. It's no longer proving to myself I can do hard things, we all can.

It's now proving to myself that I will be okay. I can more than okay. I can be really successful being me. Quiet, loving, kind, generous, giving, loyal, heartfelt, stubborn, crazy, erratic, emotional, cries all the time for the right reasons me. And that is a successful person who will be okay.

20
Sep

Five Minute Friday - challenge

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 challenge.
Go.

This week, I walked away from a 20-year career. After three years of planning and deciding and working towards this goal, I finally gave my notice and will end my long-time work at the end of 2019 starting 2020 new. And the biggest challenge isn't the chaos of the next three months or the transition or the work that this will entail...the biggest challenge is quitting. Quitting isn't something I do well. Quitting feels like the wrong word for this because it is the wrong word. It is a resignation from one amazing opportunity and life, to the start of a new one. But when you live in my head and in my world, all I can think of is, I quit. I quit my job, I quit my career, I quit on my love, I quit on my agency, I quit on those I have pledged to serve, I quit on the honor and privilege I have been given. I quit.

That is not to say I am not excited, that is not to say that I am not ready, that is not to say that the agency is not ready, that is not to say that this is what I want, that is not to say that it is needed. Because as I heard someone remind me yesterday, this is complicated and the emotions are going to be plenty and they can all live there at the same time. Excitement and sadness, resentment and fear, joy and panic, loss and gaining, all at the same time and it is complicated, that is for sure, it is very complicated.

When I came home, I was asked if I felt relieved, the secret was out, the cat was out of the bag and I don't live in secrets so doesn't it feel good to have said it out loud? No, it didn't feel good. I think because I also have a challenge of speaking feelings and not unraveling and crying and I couldn't get the right words out and I was left feeling like I didn't express my gratitude nor did I sound like an adult. So, embarrassed, I was just embarrassed. So yeah, it's complicated.

And now, I walk away and towards. Because I gave my notice, I resigned, I quit, I am leaving who I have been and what I have been attached to and how I have been defined and known. I have some sitting with it to do. I have some walking through it to do. I have some things to work through and on and figure out now. Because yeah, it's all complicated and it will be a challenge.

Stop.

13
Sep

Five Minute Friday - start

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 start.

Go.

This Sunday, I start what might be my last race for a while (see how committed I am there??). I have been feeling like it is time to hang my training shoes up, maybe not forever, but for a while. I have been feeling like I have spent an entire life proving that I can do hard things, and now, I need life to be a little more kind, to me. I have been feeling like I just want to take things a little easier on myself, and like I just need some peace. Hanging up training shoes means I am also putting down my fighting gloves and it's time to start this new chapter.

And so, on Sunday, I will stand at the start of my half marathon, I will wave to my family and I will run. I hope it will clear my mind and I hope it will be healing for my soul. I hope that it will feel like I might need a few years off to regroup, recalibrate, and figure out how to make this new world I am creating just a little bit easier. It is time for me to take a little break, a little breather, and to start a brand new day.

The words that keep flooding my mind are "easier" "lighter" "calmer" "kind" "gentle" "grateful". Because after a heavy storm, the clouds part, the earth is washed, the groud is full, the plants have been fed, sometimes, leaves fall off and branches break, but there is a necessary calm. Sometimes, you have to clean up a little from the debris left behind but that's okay. It's the start of a new day and for me, it's the start of a whole new life.

Stop.

30
Aug

Five Minute Friday - back

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 back.
Go.

At the end of a summer, it feels like we have to now get back into the swing of things. Back into routines and schedules. Back into packing lunches and emptying backpacks. Back into papers filling our home...back to structure.

There is a love/hate relationship with this time of year. I push/pull that I so often feel in parenting. A feeling of I can't wait to have you go back and yet another feeling of one more summer of childhood behind us and another transition to say goodbye to. This summer was filled with childhood, love, warmth, travel, busy, camps, weeks of time at home, projects, our house becoming a home, messes, sticky counters, crunchy floors, toys everywhere, messy rooms, laundry piling high, our house filled with people, our house filled with laughter, TV and movies, rainy days, lots of painting, reading dates, framily time, just us five, walks, runs, swims, sand, family on top of family, and childhood.

And now, we are back. Back to the grind, back to school for hubby, kids and back to me feeling like I'm not the only one back at it.

With all our love summer, you filled us full.

Stop.

23
Aug

Five Minute Friday - pace

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 pace.

Go.

Since I can remember, I have set my pace to "full speed ahead". Everything that I do, I do with all of me. I give it all that I have, and then I find some more to give, and I give that too. And when I can't find anymore, I double down and search and search and search and then I just pour more and more out of me.

I do it with how I work, I do it with my workouts, I do it with my work ethic, I do it with our home, I do it with my writing, I do it with our plans, I do it with how I love. Full speed ahead is the only pace I have.

So, when this born 40-year-old finally turned the age she was always meant to be, I'm starting to play with a different pace, a slower one, a quieter one. A pace that allows me to function a bit more, sleep a little harder, and be. Not always do and be doing, but be.

Be with you, be around you, be present, be loving, be me, be happy, be proud, be kind, be kind to me...be.

I don't know what pace it is yet, I don't know what any of it looks or feels like, not yet. I haven't found the right rhythm. I just know I'm tired of always feeling like I'm about to have a heart attack and like "it" can't stop or else all of "it" will come crashing down...whatever "it" is for this week anyway. I'm tired of feeling like I can't stop or else all that I hold will collapse, I'm just not that important.

So, little faces, I'll figure this out with you. I have a few more months of holding on and then we will play with a differently paced mamma. One that has time to look at you the whole time you're telling me a story, the one that knows the names of the kids in your class and takes walks with you and holds on to the pace you have always tried to set for us.

Stop.

19
Jul

Five Minute Friday - distant

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 distant.

Go.

Hello my dear old friend, my go-to, my pull that I work on pushing away. Hello to one of my many coping mechanisms, the ones that serve me well and poorly, all at the same time.

Hello to the thing that hurts me most about myself, the thing I learned to take away most from them. The thing that confuses me most about adulthood. Am I being healthy by creating distance, am I being same old me that just walks away? Is it a good idea, when is it a good idea? What would make my kids cringe when they are older, what will they understand and be proud of my boundaries? Do I have boundaries or do I have old unhealthy patterns?

Hello to yet one more pattern I worry about. Hello to what I know too much about. Hello silent treatment, hello distance, hello confusion, hello my dear old friend.

Hello to the constant nagging of "here we go again" and the "no, you need to walk away because you just feel so bad around them". Hello to the constant nagging of "why do you always go this route" and "when are you going to stop letting them in?" Hello to the constant nagging of "you take after them" and "you can't allow this negativity in anymore". Hello to being split and not knowing what is right, what is ethical, what to do.

And I watch others weave and go through life. Not having this weird part of them. Knowing when to walk away with health and courage, knowing what is worth fighting for. Knowing when to not look desperate and knowing when to not be too proud.

But me, I carry an old dear friend on my shoulders. I carry distance and being distant and anger and resentment and old ways and old ties and writing people off and just walking away. Hello dear sweet old friend...hello my dear.

Stop.


5
Jul

Five Minute Friday - take

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 take.

Go.

As a parent, sometimes it feels that all we do is give give give to little takers. Little faces that say, can I have, can you give me, can you get me, can you do this, can you carry that, can you drive me, can I go to, can I do this, can you bring me, can you make this happen, will be you there, can you read to me, what's for dinner, can I have dessert, can you get carry me?

Can you and will you to little takers. And we give and give and give and teach and teach and teach and at the end of each day, we wonder why our bones are tired. We wonder why we feel so empty. We wonder why our minds can't shut off and we wonder why we are so foggy.

It all starts at birth, however you birthed a person. Whether that was in a hospital, clinic, home, court room, it all starts with giving up of yourself to make room for a new one to enter your soul. You take over our hearts, our bodies, our being. You start on the inside and it pours out into the outer limits of our fingers and toes. You hold on to our hands and take our love, our devotion, or attention, and at times, our actual mind.

You, you're not to blame. You didn't ask to be here, we asked for you to find us. And part of the exhausting task of this exhausting part of parenting is teaching you to do for yourself. It is teaching you to get your own thing, to contribute to the family, to do it on your own little by little, part by part.

But in the meantime, yes, I can help you reach that snack. Yes, I can pour you something to drink. Yes, I can help you make your bed. Yes, I can take you to see your friend. Yes lovies, I can help. You can take and I will give because in the end, although I am empty, there is a fullness to my world, my heart that you give that replenishes my love, my ability and me. You give too.

Stop.


21
Jun

Five Minute Friday - question

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 question.

Go.

We all have them. We start pretty early in life trying to figure things out, or why certain things just have to be a certain way. We get in trouble for asking too many and we sometimes don't move forward because we are stuck in a cycle of them.

Although I am not motivated by a why, I am much more motivated by the because this is how "it" is "done", I do question every move I make. I do carry the thought right down to the worst case scenario. I do answer my own why but I still worry and think through, excessively think through, the decisions I make. I question myself more than I question my actions. I sit, I ponder, I think of every possible thing that could go right or wrong, and I reason it all out.

Raising two little faces that I ask to do this or that, or ask not to do this or that, I get asked why a lot. I have tried very hard to not come back with the typical, because I said so now just do it, response. Instead, I try an walk them through it all, I try and be reasonable and compassionate to all of the questions, but that's not always so easy. Patience wears thin, I have already explained it, I have answered and answered and now you're just arguing, and as always, I am tired guys. Gut-wrenching tired, bone tired, hard to stay awake ever tired.

But ask your questions, I will keep trying to answer them all. Ask your questions and dad will tell you how and why things are made. He will tell you where things are and about the history of this and that. I will tell you why I do things a certain way and how to keep yourself sane in an insane world. As you get older, remember it's okay to question yourself and your motives and your motivation and your decisions. Just do not get stuck, do not get trapped in a cycle of questions and talking yourself out of things that make you scared. Jump a little, believe just a little, trust just a little more.

Stop.

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