A Perfect StormNovember 29, 2010 at 10:00 am | Posted in Bun, Family, Giggles, Lollipop, Serial Commas | 13 Comments
Tags: Balance, Challenges, Children, Family, Happiness, Multitasking, Personal, Perspectives, Priorities, Relationships
I spent the last week cranking through a freelance project I probably should have said no to. On Tuesday, I found myself at a Target Starbucks entrenched at a back table, with papers, post-its, and colored pencils stacked fortress-like around me. I fought drowsiness with fountain-drink refills and a strategically purchased Snickers. It was a long day, full of comma splices and empty calories.
On top of that, we had just driven 1,000 miles for Thanksgiving. With one coughing kid who coughed on the kid next to him who coughed on the baby next to her. We arrived with three coughing kids. Two days later, I was coughing, too.
We’ve had wonderful holiday meals, visits with aunts, uncles, and grandparents, and a retirement party for my father-in-law. And I’ve done my best to enjoy them. But my deadline lingered, along with my sore throat. Sadly, that’s what I’ll remember most from this Thanksgiving.
The week has been a perfect storm for me. I’ve put myself last. I’ve taxed my body more than it can handle. I’ve subsisted on caffeine, sugar, and white flour. No wonder I’m a mess.
But there’s a rainbow.
Somehow, I managed to read Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project this week. Only because it was due at the library and I’d reached my renewal limit. The whole book was chock full of insight and inspiration and tips. But one line really knocked the breath out of me: This is my one and only life.
This is my one and only life. And I just spent a whole week of it not putting my family or myself first. I won’t get these seven days back. I won’t get a do-over. But I will get a fresh start.
Because this is my one and only life. And I’m completely clear, now, on how I want to spend it. And how I don’t. About what’s important to me. And what’s not. About who is important to me. And how much they deserve.
I’m clear, now, about what comes after the rain.
What lines from a favorite book stand out for you? How have you successfully shifted your priorities since becoming a parent? And are you as thankful as I am for the person who invented tissues with lotion??