What I’ve Learned

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Someone once told me: "In really tough times, take time off." I wondered what that meant for a long time. Does that mean running when times are tough? Does that mean when you can’t handle your life take a vacation from it? When your kids are driving you insane, and you feel like a mommy failure, leave them for a few days?

 

NOOOO!

What I’ve learned is that in difficult times, and challenging moments, there are opportunities to learn and understand more layers of ourselves. Sometimes, taking a break can help settle the dust, or as I have often put it, calm your chaos and take a moment check in and do a bit of inventory. How else could one know what is running low or missing? If we do not replenish our own wellbeing, we simply cannot operate at full capacity.

When is the last time you took a day just for yourself, no kids, no man, just you to deal with you?!? Looong time for me. I always preach “me time" but with four kids it’s not easy. I’m on a staycation with my kids for the holiday break, and I have been stealing every possible moment to take some much needed time for myself while they’re occupied at a kids club or swimming with friends. I need some time to think, to breathe and to discover some things about myself. I realize how difficult it is with four kids to actually read a book cover to cover- let alone complete a chapter without interruptions. I can’t even seem to finish a cup of coffee while it’s hot. I knew I was in trouble when my sister sent me a battery operated heated coffee cup for Christmas. I rarely even get a shower by myself. My scene looks more like a carwash! I do regret giving in to David’s desire for rain heads and multiple sprayers; they’re all occupied every time I get in!!!! Aaaah, the life of a big family.

Just as I have scheduled many fun activities for my children, I have also scheduled some necessary time for me.

Years end is a time for many people to examine their habits (mostly bad ones) and make commitments to break them. It’s a time to promise to better the self. I always questioned why most people wait till Dec 31st to make necessary changes. Why don’t we tune in all year? Why not make a Bucket List just because you want to dream and make a plan for possible goals? I don’t really believe in New Year’s Resolutions, because I won’t make promises to myself based on a calendar date. But I’m not knocking anyone who uses it to get motivated and make positive changes.

For me, my time is better spent focusing on the things that I have learned and reminding myself to practice what I know is my honest truth.

Here’s what I have learned this year:

Working my ass off is great for my bank account but will not bring me happiness.
Kids do not think like adults. They can’t- they’re wired differently.
What we say is not what other people always hear.
Yes you can make a difference if you GIVE.
Giving is better than receiving.
Don’t ask someone if they need love, just give it to them. They DO!
When you make dinner for 15 people, they may not say thank you. Be grateful for the experience.
Ask for help- your friends will give it to you.
Fear will hunt you down.
My highlights will never be the color of my son’s hair!
Make wishes in fountains.
Read between the lines, there is so much information there.
We deserve a break for what our parents did to us.
Chocolate will buy kisses.
Everything takes time.
Love will get you through difficult times.
Other people’s lessons can screw up your life. But they force you to learn your own.
Love makes everything better.
Don’t hurry.
Don’t worry.
I matter.
Believe.
When you listen, really hear what someone is saying.
Love.
Be careful what you give up.
Visualizing works!
You have to take care of you.
Smile at the world and it will smile back.
You can do ANYTHING as long as your intent is strong enough.

Happy New Year!
 

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