Trying to Solve it All
I have always been a solver. If ever there’s a problem, I want to fix it immediately. I can’t let things sit. Even if it’s not my own problem, leave it to me suggest a solution or remedy just to alleviate any discomfort anyone feels.
Evidence of this: My preference for ‘fun’ reading has always been self help books. My nightstand is comprised of lots of literature around parenting, health and wellness, marriage advice, creating the perfect home, running ‘like a mother,’ being an ‘empowered mama,’ seeking new religious enlightenment, autobiographies on brilliant people who have the secret to life! And at one point lots of reading around teaching strategies and philosophies (I’ve given up reading those before bed). I will try any strategy once, any mantra or system that other ‘experts’ suggest will make life easier and more peaceful. The answer has to be out there somewhere, doesn’t it?
It’s not that I can’t be at peace with the decisions and habits I have created for myself, I just always just have this desire to know the ‘best’ possible way to do something or fix something. Then perhaps if I can implement it into my own life, or at least some version of it, then everything will fall into place. I will have the answers, life will be balanced, and I can finally read fiction again! The problem is, is that we don’t know what we don’t know, and that’s everything. The answer to restlessness and anxiety is not popping out of any books or podcasts I inundate myself in, because life is always happening.
Let me just word vomit/vent for a second, to keep things real. Here’s how I am feeling tonight:
I am not good at this working mom/teacher/wife/friend/role I am playing. And it drives me crazy when I am not good at something and its glaringly obvious. I am not good at having all of my lesson plans equally engaging and interesting and challenging all at the same time. I am not good at being patience with my 1 year old daughter after having patience all day with other kids. I am not good at making sure dinner is hot and ready and healthy when my husband comes home. I am not good at making time for myself to run 3 miles every day to be ready for my half marathon goal in October. I am not good at not looking disheveled or hiding the anxiety I feel every Sunday night of the school year. I am not good at fighting back tears every morning when I drop off my daughter at daycare and I am not good at pretending not to count down the minutes until I can leave work to pick her up. I am not good at balancing it all, and I want so badly to be.
There is no book that teaches this. No amount of money can pay for a therapist or a life coach who can help you to accomplish this. This is something that is always a work in progress. Some days are better than others, some days achieve some ultimate ‘mom points,’ ‘wife points’ or ‘friend points.’ Other days feel like you earned a big fat nothing for the day, and all that can provide comfort is junk food and going to bed and sleeping it off.
I am trying. I am trying so hard to make myself better every day. I think I have to accept that it is not going to be one brilliant idea that falls out of the sky. I am not going to wake up one day and just fall naturally into a series of habits that will help me better to feel this esteemed feeling of balance. And I hate that social media and other sources of what should be inspiration or comfort don’t express the kind of grace that you have to provide yourself with in order to make it through the week in one piece. I am going to take note of the good days, and what happened, and why it happened and what steps I took to make it happen. And on the not so good days, I will be forgiving to myself and remind myself that there is no ‘solution’ to a bad day. “It’s not a bad life, it’s just a bad day.”