Breathing Deeply

Oh, the plans! The goals! The lists! The git-er-done before the sun comes up focus!
Nothing can stop me!

And then …


The word itself creates a feeling, doesn’t it? Especially the “whelm” part. I feel my arms filled with large, heavy, grey rocks that weigh me down from the muscles in my neck, through my back, and into my calves. They’re boulders, actually. More weight than I can realistically carry. I keep trying to move them to … someplace … and I don’t consider that perhaps I could take just one at a time. Too many heavy burdens in my arms and I’m trying to carry them all at once. Yea, I think that’s what “whelm” is.

And then you add “over” to “whelm” and, well, I think I’d rather do 374 burpees than carry overwhelm.

But, good grief. Isn’t that what we do waaaaayy too often?
We create and then carry our overwhelm.

This particular moment in time started out so enthusiastically.

Many of my days are spent at my mom’s, taking turns with my sisters on helping her live with her memory and cognitive challenges. But I’m home for a couple weeks while Lori spends time with her.
And I was making plans.

Let me tell you … my excitement level about all the things I would get done at home was over the moon. To-do lists filled my notebook. A whole bunch of projects and fun activities and fix-its and clean-ups were written down. I was contemplating my daily schedules while trying to convince Steve that we have to get this stuff done! Now!

You can probably guess what happened, right?

On my first day home on this two-week hiatus, I realized that I was verrrrrry focused on the list of stuff to do, realized that there weren’t enough hours in the weeks to get them all done, and quickly recognized that Steve did not share the same level of enthusiasm for the projects. And it didn’t feel fun.

The result?

So I paused. Took a breath.
And took another deeper breath.

Breathing deeply was missing in this two-week project-list-on-steroids.

[May I just say … I’m so proud of myself for recognizing earlier than usual that frenzy does not equal fun!]

So, I reset my expectations. I reconsidered how I want to spend this time.

The to-do lists got tucked between the pages of a really great book.

New plan.
I’m spending this time walking. Reading. Working on projects. Lunches out with Steve. Naps. (Oh, yes, naps!) Getting some stuff done.

Keeping it simple.
Breathing deeply.

Girlfriend, let’s remember that we aren’t required to follow to-do lists all the time. We don’t have to get everything done today. Our body, our heart, our muscles, our emotions … sometimes they just need to rest.

It’s OK to take a breath. A deep one. And then another one …

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