Tuesday, August 28, 2012


I don't do well when I'm sick. I don't like being sick, for one thing. I don't often get sick, so I'm not experienced in throwing the pity party for sympathy either. I go into wounded animal status, where I crawl into a quiet place and growl at anyone and anything that comes near.

I have a cold that is finally on the wane. Today was the worst of it: low grade fever, headache, coughing, congestion. I nearly rallied myself to go into the office and then thought, am I an idiot? I'm doing the same thing I tell other people not to do. I don't need to be branded as a petri dish nor blamed for spreading this plague throughout the workplace.

I stayed home. I read. I checked emails. I did a couple of low energy tasks. I napped. Napped! I never nap. I took some ibuprofen for the headache. I don't typically do that either. I drank many, many cups of water. I had orange juice. I had tea. I had udon soup delivered for lunch. I put on my downtempo Pandora station. I read Facebook posts. I did nothing.

I was tempted to do something. I wasn't that sick. 100.4 fever, I laugh in your face. I wanted to go grocery shopping, do some laundry, pay bills, be a grownup with grownup responsibilities.

And, the grownup said, 'Take care of yourself. You're sick, for God's sake!'

So, I did.

Taking care of yourself is one of the most difficult things to do if you're a giver. I would gladly sacrifice time, sanity, and well-being to make others happy and functional. That left very little time to attend to myself, and when I did, I felt nothing but guilt.

Today, I took care of myself, and I didn't feel that guilty.

Friday, August 24, 2012

being human

School has started for the minis. I typically feel a sense of gravitas with the new school year. It's not just a fresh start for the kids, with their new backpacks (my kingdom for a backpack that can withstand multiple forms of abuse for more than a year), backpack bling, squeaky clean lunch bags, and various items of freshly laundered clothing that may be a tad large right now but that they'll outgrown by May; it's a reset for me as well. I marvel that they are racing through their childhood, a generally happy, multi-faceted one at that. I then turn the reflective lens upon myself and think about what I've been able to accomplish, where I've had setbacks, what I want - really want - for myself.

I want a life filled with joy and love and incandescent moments that propel me to reach beyond my comfort zone. I want to be the best mother, the most appropriate and responsive mother, to my two spirited children. I want to be a partner to someone who can and wants to be my best friend. I want to immerse myself in fulfilling, satisfying work. I want to make a positive difference in small ways; I'm not one to insist on being in the limelight.

This has been a year of significant, ground shaking change. I have plenty to worry about. I can choose to let that worry consume me, or I can choose to look it straight in the eye and refuse to go down. Guess which way I'm going?

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

nearly two years of ruminations to be unleashed to the unsuspecting public

sick penguin, circa 2011. styled and photographed by Zoe Neumyer.

I've had quite a time over the last two years. I've divested, downsized, delved deep into myself to ask the hard questions. Who am I, really? Where was the self with which I was most comfortable? Who and what should surround me to get me to that best self?

My conclusions put me on an unpaved path. I'm still hacking my way through the wilderness. But, I'm at peace with myself and my decisions. I'm happy. I no longer indulge in wishful thinking over the life I should be living, because I'm living it now.

Writing, which has been blocked for me for too long, is coming back. Even creating checklists of work tasks and home duties provides a great deal of satisfaction.

Nesting in my new home that I share with my rapidly growing up children is another pleasure. I made dinner for myself for the first time in ages last night. Pappardelle egg pasta and organic marinara sauce from Trader Joe's laced with my own concoction of ground turkey, garlic, caramelized onions, fresh basil, and a liberal sprinkle of parmigiano-reggiano on top...divine.

I'm loving the simple, smaller details. And, I'm glad to be back.