Thursday, August 22, 2013

Enough. You are!

3 words I've never been able to say to me.

3 words I'm drilling into my daughter's brain every chance I get.

3 words the media & most social influences will never lovingly whisper in your ear.

You Are Enough.

And you know what?

You Are.


Here I sit....sweatpants, a shirt riddled with dog drool & grease splatter from dinner prep, hair a mess, willfully ignoring (for today) a very intimidating pile of textbooks valued at $735. They are crisp, shiny new, awakening in me both fear & excitement. Come on..don't you remember getting your history/science/math book on the first day of school, and how great the cover felt under your fingertips? How much fun the paper bag covers were to make decorate with words and symbols of childhood? I guess that feeling never goes away, even when you're much too ancient for paper bags covering your books. Anyway, I'm sitting here, contemplating what I did/didn't do today, what I should/shouldn't do tomorrow, finding myself slipping into the "I'm not doing enough" space again. And that's a muddy, gross place, lemme tell ya. It's the same old, same old....I made dinner, but it wasn't as good as I wanted it to be. I folded 5 loads of laundry, but there's one basket still not put away. I swept, but didn't vacuum. I could have done better. And then the slippery slope becomes a  cascading river that carries you quickly over the edge, down into the pool of "I'm not enough". I'm not good-cook enough. I'm not maid enough. I'm not smiley & frolicy enough. I'm not skinny enough. I'm not funny enough. I'm not Mom enough. I'm not woman enough. I don't wear makeup enough. I don't dress my age enough. It's the Not Enough pool. Filled with quicksand, and piranhas. Sounds like a grand ole time, eh?

And then I got to thinking....wait a sec. Back up.

My daughter thinks she's fat. Why? Because she isn't rail thin like the media says she should be. She isn't as pretty (in her opinion) as the girls at school. She over obsesses about her hair, her clothes, her teeth, her everything. And still gets picked on. She "isn't enough", or so she's told.

 And what do I tell her? Wear what makes YOU happy. Do your hair YOUR way. Screw them if they don't like you, call you fat. Who are they to judge? You are enough. Just the way you are. Enough.

Wait...what?!?! why should I treat myself any differently?

My children aren't perfect, but (most days) they are kind, caring, smart & loving. I am Mom enough.

My house isn't perfect, but the people who live here have what they need, when they need it, how they need it, and no one ever has to drip dry after a shower. I'm maid enough.

I smile when I am happy. I frolic when I drink. I'll loose 35 lbs, someday. If I wasn't a decent cook, people around here would be skinny, and they aren't. I don't even LIKE a lot of makeup, hair gel or high heels. And I'm really, really not a pool person. So, I'm gonna go out on a limb (and ask anyone out there who needs to, to join me)....

In all our imperfect-ness, quirkiness, busy-ness, decide-to-play-today-instead-of-worry-ness. On the days when we never get out of our pj's. On the days when everything we touch breaks, falls, cracks or cries. On the days when our kids hate us, the dogs won't even snuggle, and it rains. In those moments when we feel accomplished, and the moments when we don't. When our hair is perfectly groomed, and especially when it looks like shit. In that moment when our child makes our heart skip, whether in fear or in pride. In every hug, every smile, every song of laughter, and yes.even the tears.

Just the way I am, the way you are. In every way imaginable...

I am enough. And so are YOU.
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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

It's about time

I always say blogging is good for the soul. My soul, anyway.

And, I say photography is good for the heart. My heart.

I also say that life is too short to not do what you love. What you *really* love.

I love blogging. I love photography. I love my children, my man, my dogs. (Yes, I now have two wonderfully boxer-ish boxers.) I love a clean house, a quiet Sunday morning with coffee & smiles, running, reading, music, gardening, flowers, and a plethora of other things. Thing is, I've recently discovered that life is too short to do everything you love. And the agony of choosing which is most important to has crept into my heart as of late. So, here I am to blog about it.

I lost my job, gained a puppy, dabbled in some major couponing and began the pursuit of a new career, all in the short space of this past spring. After many discussions and non-decision making moments, I then dove head first into college. At 35. Terrifying, if I'm honest. I did a light first semester, only a few classes, and surprised myself with a successful completion of my first ever college experience. I'm now just days away from starting a full 13 credit hour fall semester, and awaiting responses from a few part time employment applications I've put it over the last few days. Which brings me to the point of this catch-up post. I have no time.

The fact that I'm sitting here, talking about having no time, while my unvaccumed floors, dusty entertainment center & never-ending piles of laundry surround me...writing instead of heeding their filthy, unkept calls? Well, it's ok, for this moment. I have a (extremely) rare few hours of only-one-in-the-house-is-me, and Pandora stopped playing seconds after I finished wiping down the kitchen backsplash. As I walked to the computer to verify I'm still listening, I was contemplating my money making options (aside from my amateur photography sales attempts), and for a brief second, wished I could write. Which brought me to memories of this blog, and to the chair in which I now sit. You see, I've long struggled with intermittent splurges of energy on things I love, only to loose ambition, or interest, or just find another random must-do to spend time on.  Photography, gaming, gardening, crafts, three (or was it four?) different blogs I've started (with a passion & a promise) then abandoned. And it seems that every time I leave one of these loves in the dust for another, a month or 8 go by before I realize I left it behind. And then I feel as if I epically failed. And I rediscover what I loved, and why.

I picked up my camera for the first time in months. The bird flew away. I set it back down. And spent hours posting images I'm not sure are worth anything for sale. I'm writing now, but can't guarantee this post won't be the only one posted in 2013. My garden is half planted, unweeded, unwatered, and still begrudgingly giving me a few squash & tomatoes here and there. It's making do without me. It would be better *with* me, but I'm at peace with a weed garden. Next year, I'll have a kick-ass garden that will put all my hopes & dreams for this year's to shame. Life goes on, most of the time.

Staring down a four month stretch of nothing but work (I hope), school, homework (for 5 of the 7 who live here), cooking & cleaning, I'm again terrified. I'm terrified I'll loose myself in the wake. Speaking of wake, I'm also a bit terrified there will be no time for sleep. I trust you'll believe me when I say there isn't enough coffee in the universe to make this girl non-monsterish when she is short on sleep. I'm not afraid of school. I know that I can pull off a insane (and unrecommended) course load, no problem. I know I will find a way to feed my family ever night, and keep the laundry washed, at least. I'm pretty sure I can find time to clean the bathroom, give a dog a bath & grocery shop once in awhile. I'll make sure there is kisses at bedtime (for those who still allow it), homework in the mornings after breakfast, and only one or 2 school snacks forgotten a week. I'm pretty sure I can juggle everything, or 98.4% of it, for a little while. Four months isn't that long, right? Right?!

It's all about time. Spending time, making time, finding time. And not loosing the important stuff along the way.

Que Pandora. Time to show those cobwebs & dust bunnies who's boss today. Pin It