So, here’s a story of something that happened about 8 months ago. I am just like every other working mom. I put unnecessary burdens on myself in my own picture of perfection, and still want very badly to attain specific hopes and dreams of my own. I am currently going to school full time to get my undergrad in Psychology. I am studying the International Sports and Science Association certification course for Specialist in Fitness Nutrition. I work full time as a store manager. I am in the Air National Guard, attempting (and failing oh so miserably) to both learn a new skill and move up in rank. I am active in the Crossfit community and was asked by my Coach to become an assistant coach. And all of those things pale in comparison to being both a wife and mother. Not to mention, I try to write on this blog. Needless to say, I’m a tad over-tasked. So, one day on my way out the door, I’m burdened by a heavy backpack containing everything I need to survive a day, a lunch box in my attempt to eat healthy, a sweater to cover my tattoos at work, my gym bag, my keys, and a water bottle. As I’m attempting to exit the door in a rush to get in to my car and off to work on time, it dawns on me that I have not yet cleaned the litter box. And here, I thought I had had a very “composed” morning. So, I stop momentarily to attempt to have the thought “Oh! I need to clean the litter box,” but instead thought, “Oh! I need to clean the laundry dishes!” I began chuckling to myself a little. And then I began to laugh… and that laughed turned in to me having a seat on the floor of my hallway, laden with all of life’s necessities for the day, laughing hysterically at the fact that not only was I over-burdened physically, but I was so burdened by every thought in my brain of what I needed to accomplish, that I couldn’t even keep my chores straight. So here I was, a 31-year old woman lying on the ground, laughing hysterically at myself while my dog tried to lick away the tears streaming down my face. I unattached all of the encumbrances weighing me down, cleaned the LITTER BOX – not to be confused with laundry or dishes – then picked everything back up and headed out the door. I then called my mom because I knew she’d appreciate the situation. She and I have exactly the same loud laugh.
As the day progressed, I couldn’t stop thinking about how a few short years before, there wouldn’t have been any way I would have laughed at something like that. I would have chided myself for being stupid enough to make such a mistake, and then that would have rolled in to me being stupid enough to take on all of those tasks and still think I’d be able to stay afloat, and that would’ve translated in to a deep, dark depression that would’ve lasted for months on end. I would have been absolutely miserable, wouldn’t have taken any of the steps it takes to finish a single one of those tasks mentioned above, and both my marriage and my parental abilities would’ve crumbled under the weight of it all. I am not going to sit here and type away pretending there haven’t been stressful moments, that I haven’t had a day or a week when it hasn’t been too much for me, or pretend that things haven’t been difficult… because they have. But when that happens, I try to look at things from an outside perspective. The reason I started all those tasks was because something inside me truly believed I could do it. There was a day when I read a quote by Laura Moncur that said, “Bite off more than you can chew, then chew it.” And I honestly believe that was the start of all the madness. Well guess what? I’m in the process of chewing. There have been times when I’ve bitten my cheeks, come close to choking, have been in desperate need for some proverbial water to wash it all down, but I’m still sitting here… chewing. And I’ll be damned if I don’t swallow this huge bite of life that I’ve taken and at the end of it not feel satisfied for the sacrifice. I’ll come out on the other side, laughing at myself on the floor of the hallway of life.