Even more Balance

I’m not one of those women that pigeonholes someone in to who they are in high school.  Just because you were a fabulously beautiful and intelligent girl that sat behind me in spanish and three (not two but three) of my high school loves/crushes were close friends with you doesn’t mean I continue to lady crush on you and your fabulousness. Really, I don’t look at every picture you post on facebook and think “Jeez, woman, do they make a version of you in an average or only in the Spectacularly Fantastic version?”  You intimidated me then with your grace and your kindness and you still do.

So when you sent me this question, I will admit that I blushed.  I might have even brought my hand to my chest and said “Me? You’re asking me?”

OK, lady. How do you balance all of those things without losing your mind? Working out. Cooking. Taking care of two kids and a husband and a house, and still manage to find time and the ways to stay connected with your husband. I am totally having a rough time with the balance and we only have one child! Sometimes (often) I just want to curl up in bed in the quiet and not do a thing!

Dear Mystery LadyCrush from High School,

Last week I wrote about Balance.  We had a delicious homemade zucchini bread for breakfast.  And then we had nachos with hot dog chili from a can for dinner. I called it balance but I what I should have talked about was forgiveness.

How do I balance it all?  I practice a lot of forgiveness.

I am a neat freak.  I like things just so.  Almost three weeks ago Lucy pulled the toilet paper holder off of the wall.   I wanted to just patch the drywall really quickly and repaint that little section of the wall, I have the paint.  And that’s when I realized that my entire bathroom is covered in painted wallpaper. (What is wrong with people?!)  I should really scrape it off.  And then repair the drywall.  And then I might as well repaint my bathroom.  But I haven’t had the time.

Instead I did something totally out of character.  I put a one inch square of duct tape over the hole (to keep my tiny friend from sticking her fingers in there. )  I considered purchasing these totally cute wall decals and placing one over that square of duct tape.  And a free standing toilet paper holder.  But I didn’t.

I have had duct tape on my wall for three weeks and toilet paper sitting on the back of my toilet.  And I forgive myself.

I workout every single day.  But sometimes I stop ten minutes before the end and I nurse Lucy for a few minutes because she is screamy and I forgive myself.

I let my 7-year-old buy lunch at school once every two weeks even though I am a stay at home mom that preaches eating wholesome food and avoiding a lot of the garbage that is unfortunately on our school lunch menu.  Emily thinks it is because she has been really well behaved. But really it is because I wanted to sleep in for ten extra minutes in the morning.   Or because instead of going to the grocery store the day before I watched Ellen and we are out of bread. And I forgive myself.

Balancing a home and kids and a marriage and taking care of myself doesn’t require me to lower my standards.  It just requires me to forgive myself when I fall short.  Because I will fall short sometimes.  And that’s okay.  Because I am giving it all I have got even when all I’ve got is a roll of duct tape, 85% of a workout and a school lunch.

This week I spent two entire days dressed like this.  Bandana.  Maternity nightgown masquerading as a dress.  Old man sweater.  Plaid glasses.  Two days.  I have not forgiven myself for this but I have made peace with it.  I did cook two fantastic dinners and nurse a baby that got two new teeth 975 times for a total of about 39 of those 48 hours. Not that I am justifying it, but like I said I haven’t forgiven myself for this yet.

Don’t be so hard on yourself.  Now answer me this – where is this quiet place that
you can curl up in a bed?

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13 responses to “Even more Balance

  1. So, I have an idea of who the mystery Ladycrush is, but I know I had an awesome conversation with you yesterday and you were my highschool Ladycrush, so there. Mind. Blown.

  2. It is the forgiveness that travels the depth that gives us great love… Amazing post my friend!

  3. I must admit, though Sarah beat me to it, you were my ladycrush in high school as well: beauty, brains, and talent. Oh, and you are tall! I was never tall…but I digress. This forgiveness you speak of sounds like an amazing thing. It alludes me though. I’ve spent so many years expecting way too much from myself and I’m not quite sure how to stop. And I always assume others expect just as much from me if not more…

  4. For a second, I read that Lucy got two new teeth, 975 times. For a total of 1,950 teeth. That would hurt, I imagine.

  5. Balance is very difficult to achieve; I admire your perseverance! Nice pic, by the way!

  6. What a lovely post. I am so with you on the forgiveness front and have made peace with myself for being a “good enough” mother. (Parenting, in my neck of the woods, can be a blood sport…)

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