It's that time of year again. The one where I get older and wiser. No - it's not tax time (well, it is, but that's not what I'm referring to). It's my birthday!
Every year, I spend this day thinking. About what I've accomplished. What I want to accomplish in the next year. It's an even more intense exercise than New Year's Eve/Day - which is just a warm-up for me.
This year, I've begun to realize that I'm a bit neurotic. It's a label I've never applied to myself before, but in analyzing me and my reactions to things, I realize that it is true. Damn. Darling Man is right.
I hate clutter, but am surrounded by it. Much of it of my own making.
I'm working on losing weight, but I hate to exercise (the diabetes has forced me to change a lot though).
My perfectionist tendencies show up in odd places. My husband asked me today how I managed to fold his ace bandages so flat. It takes a lot of time. He says that my somewhat anal attention to detail makes it a lot easier for him to wrap his knees. At least I don't iron them - but I suppose that might be next (sigh).
I could probably fill up the internet with all the weirdness that I hold inside this skin and inside my brain, but I won't. I will tell you some of the things I'm working on though.
Letting go - this is a big one for me. And all encompassing. I'm a bit of a control freak.
The socks must match and be folded before they go in the drawer. My husband's habit of throwing every sock he finds into his top drawer drives me crazy. "What?" he says. "They're all clean!" They're also mine, his and ZBoy's. No wonder I can't ever find any socks. Now, when someone needs socks, I just go look in the drawer. And sometimes I empty the drawer out, match the socks and put them in the appropriate person's dresser.
I also have to load the dishwasher a certain way. Because otherwise, you know, the dishes won't get clean. I absolutely hate those commercials for dishwashers or detergent where the kids just throw the stuff in there every which-way. It makes me want to crawl right through the screen to fix it. Darling Man gets around my reloading the dishwasher by hand-washing the dishes and stacking them crazily in the drying rack. I put them away fast, lest any topple over.
I have a tendency to tell people how to do things. This is really hard to curtail because you know I know better than you, right? Well, actually, a lot of the time, I don't. I just think I do. My tongue has lots of teethmarks on it from me trying not to interfere. I'm growing some mighty fine scar tissue in there. But it's getting easier. Now I just close my son's door when I can't stand the sight of the mess in there.
Quiet time - Another biggie. It is hard for me to relax, to do nothing. A day off from work usually includes installing a toilet, weeding the yard, cleaning the house, tackling laundry, painting a room, cleaning a carpet - you get the idea. I'm the same way at work. I get TONS of work done very efficiently. I actually do two jobs in the space of one. And take on "other duties" as assigned or not. I volunteer to answer phones, do voicework, run out to UPS, paint someone's office, do reports.... slowing down isn't an option. In fact, today is probably the closest I've come to doing nothing that I've come in a long, long time. I checked my email, paid the bills, and written a blog post for "Inner, Thinner Me" and am now writing one for "SayreSmiles". When I finish this, I'll probably pick up my novel and do some editing. Yep, a slow day for me!
But I'm trying. I've been ORDERED to take a vacation this summer. We were going to do a camping loop roadtrip for two weeks in June, but I don't know if that will happen (see next entry). We may just STAY HOME. Or take a very short trip to NC or north Georgia. I'd wanted to go to England and Wales this summer to see grandparents, but financially can't swing it. The roof has to come first. But if I actually manage to take that time off, I'm going to try very hard to accomplish NOTHING of any great consequence.
Don't Worry, Be Happy - Uh-huh. In addition to being tightly wound in general, I'm a worrier. About my son. About my husband. About parental units. About money. At least the stuff I worry about is worthy of attention, but I do tend to stick there. Son, husband, and parents are actually fairly capable of taking care of themselves. But I have to take care of the money. Luckily, we are doing okay. But we're in debt (again). I got us close to debt free before and I can do it again. It just takes some time and some management. A budget would help. I need to set one of those up. I have worksheets and notebooks and how-to tomes. I think after the roof, most of the heavy-spending on the house will be done. The rest is just cosmetic. I try not to obsess, but it's hard sometimes. How on earth did I ever get so worried?
Deep Breaths - So what's the plan? How will I accomplish those major, major goals for this next year? How do I not wind up in a loony-bin, cardiac unit, divorce court, or a cardboard box?
1) Continue lifestyle change begun with diabetes diagnosis. Eat healthfully and get plenty of exercise. To that end, I am giving myself a bicycle for my birthday. My son and I are going to ride every morning during spring break and this summer and whenever we can fit it in.
2) When I take time off, I need to take time off. No checking in on the computer, no secretly doing work from home. Time off is time off. Somehow, the "ordered" vacation will happen. I just don't know what form it will take yet.
3) Clear my chakras on a regular basis. Either myself or have a reiki session. When I don't do this, I feel all blocked up inside and unable to accomplish anything. It contributes to a sense of well-being which is all too precious to me.
4) Set up a budget. Cut up the credit cards, save one (you know, for emergencies). STICK TO IT. The money worries will take care of themselves eventually.
5) Spend time alone - regularly. I have a tendency to feel overwhelmed by people when I don't spend enough time alone. I admit to being something of a hermit and not a terribly social person unless I feel strong inside. I need that quiet time to feel that way.
My list is by no means complete. Next year I'll revisit it and see what I've managed to do. Add to it if I need to. But by necessity, the list needs to be short. Too long and it seems too daunting to even attempt. This, I think I can do.
Wish me luck, and check back next year for 46+1!