prepare for THE RIPPLE!

    So many blogs I want to write… but after a week of reflection and a birthday yesterday, I feel like I mostly need to regroup.  We spent the day at Idelwild yesterday, which to be honest would not have been my typical birthday celebration. I was exhausted from a LONG night at work and of course after coming back everything with my passwords and internet sites were and issue and I worked over.  I came home about 3 ½ hours late to rush to Idelwild and back home to work again.   This morning I thankfully got to sleep in and wanted to write before I hit the ground running again.  As we walked the park, it was a beautiful day, very little crowds and made watching out for Sam at the water park much more enjoyable than usual.  I thought all day of all the things that were waiting for me and it made me feel like the beach happened months before not just the day before.  The only reminder of the peace at the beach was my tan. (= 

    Isn’t that how I always seem to operate life, by rushing through to squeeze everything into the day?   It was only moments of returning home that life struck me in the face – the grass needed mowed, we had a picnic to attend, then back to work.  I needed to fix meals for hungry family members and no one knew what they wanted to eat and even if they did there were no groceries because we used them prior to leaving.  Laundry needed done (proud to say all beach laundry is done even the towels – huge accomplishment).   And for some reason (actually many reasons) I am definitely more emotional than usual.

    While gone I had somewhat regrouped my head but that is easy to do when I am away from the life stressors.  At the beach, only beach time exists and the hardest decision is where to go to eat and I am not responsible for the cooking.  I think it is about returning home and facing things and reality.  The clean kitchen has a table covered with mail, my email inboxes at work and home have things pulling for my attention, the home voicemail has more things that need taken care of, and the list continues.  I have a full calendar of some very significant appointments this week.  Jim’s truck went to the shop this morning and he will likely be driving home a different vehicle with a new payment.  My check engine light goes off/on in my vehicle.  I have people adjusting my plans that I carefully laid out. Throw that in with another birthday and thinking that a whole other year of life passed by and feel like I don’t have the things (emotional, physical, spiritual) to show for it.  Of note, it is NOT an age thing – I turned 42 years old yesterday and am not afraid of my age – it is a peace and contentment thing.  I just think birthdays make you reflect a little more.  I think vacations make me also look at life a little differently because you are gone from the “normal” and when I return to the “normal” I don’t always like what I see. 

     In a book I started at the beach (of note, did not get as much reading in as I had hoped) it talked about regrouping, especially when undergoing things outside our control (i.e. financial downfalls, illness, etc.)  I need to look at the small things I can change and as I change them the circle can expand – the ripple effect will happen – and more things will change.  It is not my typical thinking of I have to get it all done – my all or nothing thinking stops me from making any change sometimes.  I must regroup and think of the little changes that can ripple into bigger changes.  So instead of thinking I need to conquer the whole house I can start with the kitchen table.  Instead of focusing on the 100 lbs of weight to loose I can focus on the first 10 lbs.  Instead of focusing on the list of appointments and deadlines I can focus on today. 

     Within my circle there will also be things that I cannot change.  I have to modify my attitude to adapt to the situation.  I use to say to my nephew and Mary – “You don’t have to like it you just have to live with it”.  I don’t always choose life the way it falls.  I did not choose for my husband’s truck to need replaced, but it does and must move forward.  My attitude must be in the comfort to have him in a safe vehicle with a warranty.   I did not choose to have to go to the doctor’s this week.  My attitude must be that I must do this to treat whatever or know I have a clean bill of health.  Sometimes my attitude sticks me in a rut as much as my all or nothing thinking.  I get wrapped up in life not being fair and never take the next step.  For instance, I don’t think it is right that my insurance does not cover my son’s autism and I have to go through the Medicaid office to get the care he needs.  This attitude delayed me from applying for Medicaid in some ways.  I can’t change this fact, but I did write letters to my employer to let them know my concerns and started the horrible Medicaid process.  It isn’t going away, but my attitude delayed it.  My attitude is often also the worst case scenario for a situation – prepare for the worst and pray for the best is often my thought process.  Unfortunately, I often prepare and dwell on the worst and lack on the praying part. 

    So as I celebrate another birthday, I need to regroup.  It is the only way for me to move forward in life.  It isn’t always about the BIG picture in life, rather about the little stones that will spread the ripple… I am preparing for the RIPPLE!!!

 Everybody talks about wanting to change things and help and fix, but ultimately all you can do is fix yourself. And that’s a lot. Because if you can fix yourself, it has a ripple effect. – Rob Reiner


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