I read a lovely post here this morning. Funny how when I am running around like a chicken these days, the things I chose to focus my time on…
I have been taking mornings ‘off’ the past couple days. I take clients in the mornings, so until lunch I am available for clients. Then I go pack up my house and move things over to R’s house…to unpack later in the day. Right now, I am sitting here w my 9yo, learning some interesting things about Harry Houdini via the history channel. My 6yo creeps in to curl up on my lap and to stick his toes in his sister’s ear before going off to find his new NickJr books. This is time well-spent here.
I have been fighting for a long time to get some sort of handle on my life. How to balance work and family and writing and knitting and all the other things in my life…and how to feel good about it.
All right. So, I am in the middle of a move. It’s more like organizing two moves. Not only am I moving out of my own house –getting rid of all sorts of things—I am moving into my boyfriend’s house—and he is getting rid of things and making space for us.
My rabbits need to go to the vet to get their post-operative check-up. I have notices to send out about the move that I haven’t even started planning to write. Not to mention my art work, dolls on request still languishing as skeins of yarn in bags, my own personal writing, my fiction writing…boom boom boom…and I am tired and I am still fighting off the remnants of my sinus issues…but…the show must go on.
Not to mention, it is not just time management I am facing…because when you get right down to it, every minute of your day is your own. You make the choice to do whatever it is, every single minute of the day. Every day of late, I stop and think to myself, I am choosing to get out of bed before 7 to spend some time w R before he goes to work…or lately, I am choosing to stay in bed just a bit longer to see how much sleep I can get before I have to start moving. I am choosing to play w this simple dog to help him get his energy out before he drives me crazy rather than working on unpacking and sorting. I am choosing to sit down and watch tv while I have a snack before moving on to the next task. I am choosing to work on my knitting while we drive (R drives, I ride and knit). I am choosing to curl up on the couch w R instead of drawing that tree I took the picture of the other day. I am choosing to not finish packing my room, but to work on packing the kitchen instead. Every single moment is a choice.
You make those same choices, whether you like to admit it or not. You choose to get up in the morning to get ready to go to work. You choose to get to work on time. You choose to go to that job, whether you love it or hate it. You choose to eat that Big Mac or that breakfast shake or whatever. Every single moment is a hallway full of doors and you pick the door you are going through, even if you want to say you have no choice. You always have a choice.
It took me this long in my life to realize that one simple fact. That I am in charge of everything. My choices are my life. My life is my choices.
It goes farther than time management. As I am going through so many things in my own home, I am shocked over and over by strange things. First, things were being let go of, even before R and I decided we were living together, full time, permanently (versus having all our stuff at our house and living at his house)…and w every item that goes into a bag to be donated. Then, things shifted for me mentally/emotionally after that switch in my head tripped, the one that was making me so afraid of moving in to R’s house and …taking over and shoving him out and away. I hate moving his stuff without him knowing, or without him there. I do not go through his stuff. It is his stuff. I don’t mess w it. This was the fatal flaw in previous relationships apparently—what’s mine is mine and what’s yours is yours and what’s ours is ours. I don’t mess w your stuff. I don’t have to know where you are every moment of the day. I’ll let you go through all my stuff and I will tell you where I am every minute of the day if you want me to, but you’re pretty much free to have a life and to be yourself without me as your appendage. Strangely enough, R and I have no issues there. I haven’t changed. A day or two ago, my brain went from ohmygod we are so ruining R’s life by moving in to ohmygod we are really moving in and this is the best thing in the whole wide world, for all of us, R included…that finally dawned on me when E and I were making plans to plant our beloved rose bushes…mwahahaha.
If I am thinking of planting roses, I am thinking we are going to be here for awhile.
That was the flip. Not we’ll be in my house for about a year or so, until we buy that bigger house that we all move into together (which would eliminate my feeling as if I am an interloper in R’s house). Not that we’ll be in this house for another year. We could be here for several years. Frankly, if we move any sooner, I think the neighbor across the street will kill us, but that’s another matter. She likes us. We improve the neighborhood. We’re good neighbors. Now, I am thinking, we can stay here, three years, five years, build our family…buy that much bigger house, fix it up the way we want it, before we start to move into it…heck, we’re having the floors refinished at R’s next week…and after they do the floors, w all the furniture out of the way, we’re painting the walls.
The interesting thing is what happened when I went to my house after that flip, even before I realized the flip had happened. I went into my kitchen—which is the center of my home—I love to cook—I love to bake—I love to feed people—I mean other than my snarfy uber picky kids at times…I stepped into my hallowed kitchen and didn’t even inhale as I loaded up boxes and bags and more boxes of things that had to go. I never paused. I never looked at what went into the donation pile and thought oh I wish I could keep that. I did giggle once, when it dawned on me the ex-husband was not entirely gone w that trunk…but here was a pan we received as a wedding gift, w our dog’s teeth marks in the bottom where they’d licked it clean after one meal or another, that I used to cook with so frequently –and it went into the bag of donations without a blink, without a flinch. There was no attachment.
It was after that happened and I reflected upon it that I became aware of just how my brain had flipped and had started to process moving in w R in such a more positive manner. It wasn’t the ex-husband stuff so much as it was the entire kitchen. Oh, yes, I kept quite a bit of my kitchen stuff…but I let go of so much that it was incredible.
I’ve been so incredibly proud of myself for all the clothing I’ve let go of recently. But…but…when I recognized that brain flip, I saw something else entirely. I am notorious for holding on to things, for myself, for others, for just in case. I come from that strain…I remember my grandmother and her root cellar of what I called her science experiments, they’d been down there so long—she could not and would not get rid of them, goods canned when my dad was a boy, because “someone might need them”—honey, when your corn turns a brilliant bloody purple, you can throw them out, really. No one will feel bad if you do. No matter how hungry they are, no one is going to eat that corn.
What I learned about myself is that I truly feel safe…Safe, capital S. I am not holding on to anything ‘just in case’. I not only feel safe—and better and healthier and so many other things—letting go of things…but I feel safe in the knowledge that should I ever need them again (if ever I should need to have three 2 cup graded glass measuring cups) we can buy them. There is no doubt about our future.
That is the BIG thing…there is no doubt about our future…R and I are together and we will always be together. Neither of us has any doubt about that. We also have no doubts about our abilities to succeed, in all areas of our lives. It is not just real estate. It is not just his computer skills. It is not just my artistic endeavors. There are so many avenues that we are walking down together—that alone we would probably both lose our desire and wherewithal to achieve anything.
This is all about Time, right? I am no longer living for the future. I am no longer living in the past. I am here, now.
I no longer say I didn’t have the time…I always say now I didn’t make the time. I am that aware of the choices I make every day. I am glad of it, even if I do not accomplish everything I mean to accomplish every day. At least I accept the fact that I chose to do the things that make me happy and that connect me with my family …and my home now…that much more.