Letting guilt go

guilt free zone

I have a list of to-do’s.  Many of them are things I need to get done in order to make my life less chaotic.  And let’s face it – life can be chaotic.  Things like clean the high chair before the next meal, prepare snacks for the babysitter to feed the child before she gets there, make sure the laundry is done.

Some of them are things that would be nice to get done to make life more pleasant.  Those unfortunately usually fall to the bottom of the list and the chaos-inducing ones.  Things like fold and put away the laundry, prepare snacks for the week ahead of time, and prepare healthy snacks for myself ahead of time.

And then there’s the wish to-do list.  This one is never really written down, but remains in my head as dreams of things I want to-do.  This includes things like go to an extra exercise class (besides the 2 a week I normally go to), bake just to bake, write a blog post, read a book, etc.

These I can say really never get done.  (The exception is today’s blog post writing).  But I want to do these things, so I need to make them happen.

Sometimes life is funny.  We spend our days doing things we really don’t want to do, but need to do, while dreaming about what we want to do.  Wouldn’t it be wonderful if it was the other way around?  Unless you are fortunate enough to have a full time housekeeper, chef, nanny, dog sitter, etc. – this probably isn’t possible.  And even then, I’m sure you are stuck doing things you don’t want to because you have to.  And yes, it’s part of life – doing things you don’t want to.  And that’s fine.  No big deal.

But then there’s finding the time for things you want to do.  That’s where the difficult part comes in.

So, here I am, finding time.  Instead of zoning out in front of the tv after a busy day of work and life, I’m writing.  Because I want to and this is the time I have to do it.

It shouldn’t be so hard to find motivation to do things you want to do.  But sometimes, it is.  And that’s a reality.  There’s all these slogans that say if you really want it, you’ll find a way; and if you don’t, then you’ll find an excuse.  While I do believe there is some truth to this – there is also the truth of being run down, exhausted and used up by the end of the day.

So, no more feeling guilty for not working after the little one goes to sleep and taking time to do something for me.

No more feeling guilty that I haven’t yet cleaned the high chair in preparation for tomorrows breakfast.  Breakfast is 12 hours away.  I can take some time to write.

No more feeling guilty – the guilt can kill the motivation.  So here I am, guiltless, spending a little me time before diving back into life.

Hopefully I can keep up the no guilt train!

 

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Changes and Dreams

I used to pride myself on being able to handle change well – even craving change.  But these past several months have challenged that thought.

I have had a lot of change.  Like, if you ever take one of those life stressor polls, I’d rate pretty darn high.  I actually just took a quiz (the Holmes-Rahe Stress Inventory) and scored well above the high rating and they predict I have an 80% chance of having a major health incidence in the next 2 years.  So…um…

Every little change is now effecting me in a negative way.  For instance, our neighbors moved.  We weren’t close.  I knew their names and would wave if we saw each other – but that’s about it.  But now at night, when I’m washing the baby bottles, I look out our kitchen window and don’t see the familiar view of our neighbor sitting on her couch working on her laptop.  And it makes me sad.  I feel out of control.  And I hate that.

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In order to make myself feel more in control over all these out of my hands changes, I tend to dream about my life in the future.  I don’t dream too far in advance, maybe 6 months to 2 years.  And I’m not unrealistic.  I don’t envision myself winning the lottery or moving to France.  I envision real-life possibilities.  And it helps.  It gives me a sense of calm and control, even if the control is just an illusion.

But I don’t tell anyone my future life visions.  I think it’s because I’ve had goals I’ve shared in the past, and didn’t make them, and felt horrible about myself.  It was embarrassing.  So I stopped voicing my dreams.  Which is sad.  I kind of need to voice these, right?  I mean, how can I make my life more of what I want, and make sure my husband and I are both seeing the same, or close to same, things – unless I share these.

It’s hard to find time to talk seriously with him now.  In depth conversations are a thing of the past.  We now talk about poopy diapers, what we can scrounge out of the fridge for dinner, and our deep desire for more sleep.  Nothing serious.  But that’s my goal for the weekend.  To voice my dreams.  I may have to give a dream disclaimer.  Something along the lines of “is this doesn’t happen, it’s OK.”  Give myself a little out in case I change my mind, lose my way, etc.  Maybe that will make the conversation a little easier.

Once I share them with him, I’ll share them with you.  So stay tuned…