Sitting back and thinking about it, I probably should have put this as the first part – buy hey. Here we are. You really want to know how I do it all? The big, huge, deep and dark secret?
I don’t. I don’t do it all.
It might seem like a lot to you, but if it seems like a lot-I am betting that it is our “all” is different. Maybe you are carting kids and their friends to ball practices, recitals, and maybe working four jobs. Who Knows!?! But, I bet – our all is different.
Let’s start with an important aspect to me. I have some health issues – and sometimes, my energy is in the toilet. Complete and utter exhaustion. I feel mentally foggy, physically lethargic, and all in all – just want to nap. Now, those times are much farther spaced now, because I have learned to take control, and not over do it. I know my capabilities, and if my energy is on the lower end of the spectrum- I don’t drain it any further by overexerting myself. I have to take care of ME so I am capable of taking care of those I love. And sometimes that requires me to say, “I’m sorry baby, but I can’t go out to dinner tonight. I know I said that I would, but I am really exhausted and I want to stay healthy for you!” Does it suck? Sure. It is also a hard lesson learned, because I wanted to ‘follow through’ on a promise when I wasn’t able, I end up stuck in bed all weekend long. Luckily – I haven’t had one of those in months!
A key aspect to doing this with grace? Let all of the guilt go. You have to take care of you – to be the best for those you love. Let me tell you something, write this down Tattoo it on your forearm. Write it on your mirror. Memorize it. WHEN GUILT LEADS, YOU TRY TO PLEASE EVERYONE. THE IRONY? YOU PLEASE NO ONE, ESPECIALLY YOURSELF.
So let’s use the dinner situation above as an example, shall we? Let’s say I go. I feel like utter crap, but I go. I’m slow. I am sitting, watching the clock, wanting to leave. I try to engage in conversation – but remember, there’s mental fog. It’s a struggle for me, which becomes a struggle for my company. No one is having a good time.
On the flip side, what if I say, “I don’t feel like it – but can you come over and sit in bed with me and we can order take out?” I say that, because that has literally happened. A few times. LOL! Please understand, there is a difference between being a flake, and taking care of yourself, too! If you are a person with commitment remorse, buck up once you commit. Because honestly, you probably need to get out for your mental health!
Give yourself grace. My friends will laugh when they read this – because I say that all the freaking time. But it’s true. I still suck at it. I beat myself up way too often. And often times, If a friends told me the same thing I was beating myself up for – I would be much more loving and patient. One thing that I beat myself up over? My kids extra curricular stuff. Tariq, although he is an adult-ish, I love to go to his performances. He is my kid. Bella and Jacoby – same. I want them to look out in the audience, and see momma. To know that momma is always there and cheering them on.
Last year, I missed one of Bella’s concerts? Why you ask? Long story short – Jacoby made a poor life choice, fell out of a tree, and I was in the ER. Good reason to miss, right? Of course. It took me about two months to get over it. No joke. I felt horrible.
Two weeks ago, Tariq sung in an event downtown. I had planned on going, but I was so tired, and it was a huge convention. Tariq is telling me to stay home. He said it was so short, it would take me longer to park and walk there than what I would hear. So, I stayed home. It was the right choice. I still had guilt. I had to talk myself through it.
To sum it up. There are some things you have to do. Laundry. Groceries. Work. There are other things that you have to do also – like kids activities, dating, vacations, relaxation, etc. Some days – you might need to let the laundry go, and go out on that date. Do the laundry tomorrow. It’s fine. Don’t feel guilty about it. I mean honestly, the crap is gonna get dirty again anyway.
So, I guess I just changed my mind again. I do – do it all. I just do it all on different days, different phases, and to my ability. I wrap myself in grace, I make sure that my energy and activities match, I know what I have to do, what I want to do, and then I try to arrange it.
Listen, we are never going to live in a “there is time for everything utopia”, it’s not gonna happen. Nor, or we going to be able to add more hours to our day. So, let’s make every hour the best we can for that moment, and go to bed, happy and content, and not running through all we didn’t do.
Love Fully. Live Fully. Shine on.