Murphy’s Law is not Mine


I sit here in an ER, all by myself.  I checked in and realized my wallet is not with me: my husband graciously took pictures of my documentation and the kind folks at the ER let me in.

I am waiting to get my stitches from this morning redone.

They weren’t stitches I was expecting – I ended up getting a biopsy on my finger when I went to the dermatologist.  

So distracted was I by the biopsy and to some extent annoyed, that on the way home from the appointment that I didn’t notice that I was doing 70 in a 55 until I passed the cop.

The cop, of course stopped me.  He told me he’d got me with laser far exceeding the limit. I smiled sheepishly.  When he asked me where I was coming from I showed him my bandaid.

He took my License and insurance back to his squad while I tried to keep from panicking.  After what seemed a long time, the kind officer told me told me that he had no idea why he felt compelled  to do so, that he was letting me off with a warning.  I thanked him profusely and pushed onward. 

Tonight I dragged myself to the gym even though I didn’t want to go.  I made commitments I wanted to keep: I wanted to be a trooper.  I worked hard but tried to be smart about it – that said, I don’t know how but I busted my stitches wide open.  After failed attempts on the way home from the gym to McGuyver the wound  and leaving my husband home with the kids at 10:30 at night I left to go to ER.

There was a time I would be angry and impatient and yelling at something like this:  there was a time I would naturally conclude the world conspired against me.  

But today:

  1. I had a car to drive to the doctor,
  2. I had money to pay for the doctor,
  3. An officer showed me mercy when I did not deserve it,
  4. The ER let me in without ID or question,
  5. My husband ran around and took pictures of all my information and sent it to me without complaint,
  6. Someone is going to take care of this hand eventually, and
  7. Of everyone here I am in the least discomfort with plenty of entertainment.  My ouchie is more embarrassing than painful.  I’m not the helplessly watching mom with the violently ill little girl who is crying between bouts of vomit.
  8. The doctors didn’t laugh at me or my Rudolph band-aid.

Thank you, I am just fine.   God is taking care of me. Some nice nurse just brought me a warm blanket.   And I don’t mean to sound Hallmark-y but I’ll take the ER any day as long as my kiddos are safe and warm in the home I will eventually return to sometime in the next few hours.  I will have a comfortable bed to sleep in once I get there when for some the ER cots are luxury.

I will count my blessings today and call out my miracles when I see them…and be grateful that I DO see them, everywhere, not the least of which in my own perspective. 

 Thank you God.  Thank you God.   

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“I’ve Fallen and I Can’t Get Up!”


helpYes, it was a bad television commercial for some kind of medical alert bracelet, but how many times have you found yourself getting caught up in one mistake and either a)letting it suck you dry and giving up entirely on whatever it was you were attempting or b)focusing so much on the mistake you just made that you make another because you’re so stuck mentally on a past error you can’t see what’s right in front of you?

I have lost weeks of my life and productivity and happiness and peace because I could not see past my own mistakes.  Whether I sacrificed my mood, my attention, or my own perception of myself,  I have made Mt. Everest out of problems that started out the size of mouse poop…that seriously ended up the size of two mountains and a mini-van because I didn’t deal with them in a healthy way.

(And don’t ask me how I know what the size of a mouse poop is. I just know.)

When you make a mistake, do you find yourself doing any of the following?

  1. Generalizing – “Well, I guess I’ll just add that to my long list of things I’ve screwed up” and then look back over your metal inventory of errors;
  2. Freezing – Getting so stuck in thinking through every dire and terrible thing that will surely come as a consequence of your mistake that you can do nothing else;
  3. Negative Self-Talk – I’m such an idiot, I’m a failure, and then of course calling your friends/associates not for help solving the problem but to talk negatively about yourself to them as a sort of self-punishment;
  4. Ruminating – where you literally can’t think straight or notice what is going on around you because your brain is so focused on what you had done wrong that you’re in a mental and emotional tailspin;
  5. Blaming – hoping like hell there is someone else you can pin the error on to take the heat off yourself in any way possible so you don’t have to own what you did;
  6. Hiding – Making great efforts to cover up your mistake  or praying simply that no one else notices and trying to convince yourself you hadn’t noticed either

Take it from someone who knows and has been there: if you’re looking for a way to waste your life, breath, and energy and potentially endanger your health, job, self-worth and friendships, then feel free to continue, but it’s not something I’d recommend.

Here’s the difficult thing: whatever it is – it’s done.  The only safe way to handle a mistake is to look it straight in the face, own it, take responsibility for it and whatever that entails.  You then try to find a solution for it, make reparations, and problem-solve as effectively and as completely as possible and move on, trying not to repeat the mistake.

Moving on, by the way, means *really* moving on.  Leave it in the sand.  Drop it.  Forgive yourself.  I once heard it said like this: your body doesn’t ask if you are worthy when it knows there has been damage done.  It just starts work on healing what’s there without judgement.   Do that for yourself.  Take the next best steps whatever those are, one at a time.

How many years of your life could we get back if we treated ourselves with the same objectivity when we messed up, and worked to fix our issues and mistakes without the judgment, shame, or mental mess that so often trips us up?  What if we treated others the same way?  Oh what a world we could create!

Get Back Up.  Brush Yourself Off.  Rub some dirt on it.  Life is a giant adventure and you’ve got better things ahead and no time to waste!   Get up and get at them today!

 

 

The Ghost of Seasons Past


Standing around with two of my best girlfriends at my daughter’s 4th birthday party, I found some validation, enlightenment, and perspective (as much as one might muster amid a horde of tiny, rushing, screaming humans).

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The Parental Juggling Act


 

Parenthood: More than just juggling hearts and flowers!

When you have two working parents, and two children, there are many different things you have to try to balance. It’s not easy. It’s exhausting. It frequently requires a tag-team effort.

Yes, there are the meals that go uncooked, the house that goes uncleaned, and mass chaos but on top of that there are other considerations:

  • Determining which of us is less likely to face career retribution from staying home or leaving early to take care of kids;
  • Figuring out which one of us is actually more tired and frustrated (competitive self-pity);
  • Delegation of triage procedures for toy-related injuries;
  • Which series on the DVR to delete because we’ve never managed to catch up;
  • Which children’s program is the least annoying;
  • Setting a date and time to actually have a conversation not involving scheduling, kids, or finances…
    and the actually managing to do it;
  • Locating and/or remembering what presents were hidden where and who they were for in the first place;
  • Figuring out who gets to eat the treats we deny our children for health reasons (aka taking one for the team)!

Can you relate to any of this?  Parenthood:  a wonderful journey requiring frequent comedy breaks and a massive sense of humor!

 

The Evolution of Dreams


I have always thought it important to have both dreams and  goals.  For much of my life, that was difficult to articulate: I am one for who most of those dreams have always been a little hazy and insubstantial…with a few exceptions:

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Early Morning Debacles of the Embarrassing Kind


I woke this morning before 5am, as is becoming normal for me. I went into the bathroom, starting to get ready to take a shower and I realized my iPhone was at 1% of battery life. Instantly panicked (as anyone as phone-dependent as I am quickly becomes at this status) I brought my phone over to the outlet in the bedroom and plugged it in. I started checking my email, etc. and the next thing I knew, ended up working on a blog post for www.mischiefofminions.com (my other blog, more kiddie-focused: feel free to check it out!).

My husband discovered me still there when he woke up 40 minutes later.

“Um – whatcha doing?” he asked.

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Hiding from Food


I may have mentioned before that I am fat.  It’s not much of a secret.   I don’t like to use that term, hate it in fact, but it is a medical reality. And I am struggling once again in attempt to fight it.

My inspiration is simple: I don’t want to be this big. I hate it. I sometimes hate me because of it. And that is not a good example to be setting for my kids.

When I went to a doctor recently because I seem to struggle with losing weight – even when I eat the right things, I was put through a battery of tests that basically said there isn’t a darn thing wrong with me. The dietician looked at food logs I presented, then back at me, perplexed.

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Dinner time on a diet


I may have mentioned previously that I am not a skinny gal. It’s a battle I continue to fight: at times my efforts are pretty hardcore.

Like now, for instance.

A working mom’s best friends are sometimes drive-thru windows and at least partially pre-packaged meals at least once or twice a week.

Not an option. I have a very limited diet and need to prepare my own meals. It sucks.

What becomes harder? Walking into the house and preparing a meal that will feed me and making additional options for everyone else…far tastier options.

It’s not just the cooking. It’s the dang dishes and the clean-up. It is a giant pain in the hooey.

What I need is a personal chef and housekeeper. For that matter, a personal trainer would not run amiss.

But if I had those things, I also probably wouldn’t need to work the hours I do, etc., etc.

Ah well. Night 3 of home-cooking included cooked cabbage. Not the tastiest item, especially without lots of butter and salt. My family’s option included pasta, which I can’t have.

I’m not bitter, not really. I ignored my daughter’s comments about my soggy lettuce. I tried not to smell the delicious carbs. I ignored my husband’s pitying look. I am eating what I should and hopefully it will lead to better things.

That said? The lovely cabbage smell? The kind of smell that sneaks up on you in hallways of random apartment buildings?

Yeah, they won’t be running away from that anytime soon.

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Poultry Media


I admit it: I don’t watch much in the way of news. I don’t seek it out without specific intention: not only do I not have the time, but also it gets in the way of my DVR programming, which is already greatly reduced by the amount of children’s programming that seems to find its way onto one tv (or iPhone or iPad or Kindle) or another.

I manage to tune out much of the celebrity gossip, reality tv in most of its incarnations and the latest political propaganda.

I admit it: I even avoid much of the Olympic coverage. There is some shame there, but had I known previously that the Trampoline was in fact an actual event, it might have been a different story.

But the proliferation of poorly-spelled poultry -laden nonsense has been a little insane. I am not saying I don’t see there are some topics within that mess that people want to talk about.

I just think that a moral platform, regardless of your beliefs, built on a foundation of chicken grease, public ignorance and highly processed animal goo tends to have a level of ridicule accompanying it… not to mention gas…in which whatever actual communication may be in there drowns.

Serving up your hate on a bun makes it no more palatable, and it is insulting to the poor chickens.

I would honestly rather watch Sesame Street.

Concessions of a working mum


There are many ways in which my life has changed while trying to balance a family, kids, and a career. I now find myself:

  • Listening to books a la .mp3 while commuting since keeping my eyes open with a real book seems impossible;
  • Writing blog entries on my cell phone mornings at two a.m. while waiting for my small son to fall back asleep;
  • Watching the first 10 minutes of one television show on the DVR over a three evening period because I keep falling asleep before the 11th;
  • Sneaking into my children’s rooms to watch them sleep because I get such little time with them during the day (and occasionally waking up in their rooms);
  • Catching up on the lives of my family via Facebook since so rarely are we able to even speak on the phone at the same times;
  • Not having any kind of consistent social life outside of the minions;
  • Getting little quality time (read: any time) spent on hair, makeup, or general beautification unless I am willing to get up at 3am (sorry world);
  • An almost constant craving for Sleep, Sleep, Sleep (Um, have I mentioned sleep?) has supplanted almost all other desires.

And honestly? I am so grateful for the two little Berserkers I have that as long as they remain decently clothed, fed, and (reasonably) happy, nothing else matters. There is nothing I am unwilling to do in that pursuit, no job I would not undertake, and I am sure that is true of you too.

The minions: my main inspiration for everything.