A couple of months ago, as I was in the midst of reading Brene Brown’s book Daring Greatly, we had some family tension that I’m about to tell you about. It’s amazing how you can start to work on an aspect of yourself and then you can get punched in the face with it.
I’m highly sensitive to criticism. Partially because I’m so inwardly critical already, but maybe it’s mainly because I’m SUCH a people pleaser. On that particular day my Papa, who is normally my biggest fan, voiced major misgivings about Tommy and I owning vending machines. He was pretty harsh about it, but not necessarily wrong in what he said (see how I’m having trouble even giving in way after the fact), and I left feeling judged and shamed. For better or worse, my parents’ approval still means a lot to me.
The thought of that small interaction, still brings a lump to my throat. Anyway, later that day Mama called me knowing that I would be upset. I got the whole story out to her, and then the words “I’m trying so hard.” got caught in my throat…and then I was full on sobbing as the emotion and exhaustion just came pouring out of me.
Her response was, “I know you are sweetie. You must be so tired. It seems like you’ve been hustling for a long time. It’s okay to relax.”
At that moment, life had been feeling like a hustle for a few months. I hadn’t realized how much my mind was racing, and how tightly wound I was feeling. I don’t know if you know this, but having a child that you weren’t expecting to have is a pretty big deal…And one of the ways it is a big deal is financially.
One of my major triggers has to do with money. I tend to worry about money. It makes my mind run in circles and do backflips. To get challenged on something that I had come up with to alleviate that stress was somewhat maddening, and to have someone suggest that I relax made me pretty angry too.
But….I sat with it anyway. I sat with the anger. I sat with the resentment. I sat with the knowledge that the hustle did feel unbalanced.
What I came to was that it is fine to have goals and to work towards them, but that I need to not focus on them all the time. Tommy supports our family financially. Constantly worrying doesn’t show gratitude for that. When I’m worrying, I can’t fully listen or engage with my children. I can’t fully admire Ava’s daily fashion shows when I’m in that state. I can’t listen to Grace’s newly learned science facts, and I can’t notice how Granger and Finn are starting to do more than side by side play, but are actually starting to engage in imaginative play together.
So, you may have noticed that I’ve been less present in this online space. It’s because I’ve been more present in this here home space. However, I’m deeply missing my writing. I think at this point I’m ready to mindfully add the daily practice of writing back in.
I’ve missed interacting with my readers a lot. I have some of the very best people in my life. Thanks for being here.
As I’m getting back in the swing of writing, do you have any questions for me? Those are always greatly appreciated (and great fodder for post ideas).