A feeling of peace and calm

First, let me apologize to anyone I shocked yesterday with my description of the kid's behavior at the dance the other night.  I guess I don't think about it too much.  I've gone to enough middle school dances to have gotten used to a certain amount of bad behavior from kids that I think are generally good kids; athletes, high grades, normally well-behaved; kids I don't mind my kid hanging around...with adult supervision.  I should have said more about that and less about what was inappropriate.

Anyway, I am feeling remakably relaxed today.  I'm listening to music at my desk.  I'm chairdancing, which is likely very embarassing, but since I can't see it, I don't care. 

The song Defying Gravity from Wicked came on and the song starts with this line;

"Something has changed within me,
Something is not the same..."

And, that inspired today's post. 

That is soooo how I'm feeling today.  I'm still learning.  Still growing.  And, still changing.  I'm learning to really take care of myself and I'm starting to let a lot of useless crap go.  And, I gotta tell you, it feels weird.  Weird to be out from under more of the burdens I've carried for years.  And, weird to feel relaxed in situations I haven't felt relaxed in for a long time, like work and at home with the family.  Even driving is a more relaxed activity, involving less sticking my tongue out and more smiling at my fellow drivers as we pass for that briefest of moments. 

Part of the weirdness is just thinking back and seeing this change in spurts where I dealt with this burden and then that burden and another until I've managed to make my life a bit easier and to enjoy the things that I've decided to keep doing. 

One burden I can point to is the day I decided not to be responsible for Sydney's grades anymore.  And, sure enough, she pulled it out as an A/B honor roll student this year.  I stopped being stressed by her unwillingness to let me help.  I was ever available, but a few months back, I made her come to me.  And, I stopped worrying about it.  Poor Rob likely worried more, but I worried a whole lot less and started enjoying time with her more.  And, holding her responsible for what she did instead of what she might do.

Another burden I put myself under was at work and my need to get people to do what my boss wanted them to.  For a long time, during my last extended project, that was my job.  And, it changed who I was and I didn't like it.  I had to be more demanding and I had to learn to negotiate in a different way that required a firmer hand than the word negotiation normally implies.  And, I was successful, working with a huge group of people and representing my team's interests very well.  Learning their processes sufficiently to use those processes to get what I wanted.  But, I was so stressed out that some days I'd go home and just growl for a half hour.  Not at anyone there, but just growling because I was so frustrated that I couldn't do anything else!  And, they had to listen to it.  That's part of what I was talking about the other day when I talked about kids picking up the behavior we model, whether it's the behavior we want them to pick up or not.

And then I learned to recognize when I had exceeded how much I really cared about whatever problem was going on and started passing those problems to someone with more authority to solve them (and more give-a-damn about them than I had). 

Even my crafting was suffering.  Being so stressed at work was leaving me driven in the sewing room, too.  Driven on one day to finish everything I had started because UFO's were a heavy burden and then on the next day, driven to start something new so I could learn some new skill.  And, not really enjoying either of those because as soon as I shifted from one drive to the other, I felt guilty about the one I wasn't doing.  (does that make sense???) 

Anyway, over the last few months, I've started to slow down and enjoy the process.  Watch the beauty of a block unfold or enjoy the pleasure of a hand sewn binding to finish some project off.  I still do the same thing; alternate between wanting to finish and wanting to start something new, but I'm not feeling that pressured drive to do it. 

One thing I realized is that I am the only person on this whole earth that really cares if I ever finish those UFO's...okay, except Becky wants me to finish that Indian Orange Peel.  But for the most part, if I leave this earth with them unfinished, nobody is going to care one bit.  So, why was I pressuring myself instead of enjoying the work????  Does that make sense? 

School's out.  Summer is starting.  My kid is growing up.  We are a great family.  My relationship gets better and more understanding every day.  I have good hard work that requires my attention and the days pass fast and I make enough money that I can keep us happy and share some with those that don't. 

You know what?  I don't think it's going to get better than this. 

And, it's up to me to enjoy it because that's what my higher power gave me, just for me, not for anybody else, and it would be a shame to waste it with worry and stress. 

In a week, when I'm typing in all caps and red, please remind me of this post, eh?

Have a great Thursday everybody. 



Impera_Magna said...

Your post brought a smile to my face and a tear to my eye... I'm so glad that things are getting better... and that you're growing and changing.

Even with five grandchildren (one of whom is finishing 7th grade), I'm still learning new things and growing... and I think it's wonderful! Life is about learning and growing because when you stop learning/growing... you begin to die.

Seraphinalina said...

So much of life is perspective. I am glad to hear you have found one that fits so well.

regan said...

You have so much to be grateful for, and it's so nice that you slowed down, breathed, and realized it! Contentment is really wonderful, and I don't think most folks realize it. They think 'bigger, better, more' is the goal, instead of contentment in family, friendships, faith and community.

And when you retire, and the money is tight.....you'll be glad to have a closet full of UFO's to work on! LOL

Becky said...

Hahahaha!! You betcha I want you to finish the Indian Orange Peel!!

I am glad you are enjoying the process more because the process, or journey, is what it is all about. That's the time of growing, adjusting, and appreciating the little things in life. Oh, and by the way, we all need to be reminded occasionally about this, so don't feel like the Lone Ranger!!

Love you!! Have a great weekend!

Sandi Colwell said...

I just wrote a similar post on my blog! I needed to let go of all the guilt of not finishing some UFO's and worrying about things that I have no control over. I am a mom to three teen/preteen girls and I love reading about your journey with Sydney. Thanks. Here is my blog post if you wish to read it!


Vesuviusmama said...

I'm glad you are feeling so at peace! And I'm glad you wrote it down so you could go back to it when you need to and ground yourself. 5 more school days for my kids, and I think I'm more excited for summer than they are. I just enjoy the laid back feeling of summer, even when it means I am working the same as I always do.

Kim West said...

Thank you for posting these type posts; they give me insight to things I do as well and need to improve upon in myself.

Anonymous said...

I wasn't upset by your last post. It was quite right and real. Never did I think you were being anything but a good parent, and a lenient one at that. But then my oldest is 40. Stop worrying and start enjoying. Sometimes when I want the love of sewing without the pressure, I just go in and straighten up my sewing room and fill some bobbins.Everybody needs a break from the pressure.

Coloradolady said...

very inspiring and right on time....needed to read some encouraging words today. Have a great weekend!

Anonymous said...

Your posts are helping me with my own life. I need to stop stressing and thinking others should be living their life my way. Thanks for sharing.

Shevvy said...

What a great place to be in - don't you wish you could bottle the feeling for the times when it is missing?

Carla said...

Don't worry be Happy!
You can only do so much.