Wednesday, December 19, 2012
When I knew my son was going to be gone during the bulk of 2012, I started putting a pebble a day into a bowl/jar... beginning January 1st. The photo above shows where the fill level is today. It's about to overflow. And that is good news, because it means probably within a month to six weeks, I'll see him again.
We all have our little devices that get us through "one day at a time". This has been one of mine. If you take each pebble in the jar, and have it represent a day of "mostly" good decisions, you are building a healthy year.
Some years, it's been star stickers on a calendar. Some years different kinds of stickers. It is one of the motivators that seemed to work for me as a kindergartner, and does even now!
So, here's to the jar getting to "full", only 13 days 'til the New Year, and time to start afresh. Wonder what next year's marker will be?
Life is good... Spark on!
Tuesday, December 18, 2012
I read my niece's facebook status this morning where she mentioned she NEEDED to get out and run this morning. I knew how she felt. Because I get that "coiled spring" feeling, when... I NEED to run... even if it's on a treadmill.
Tonight, after working longer than intended, I needed to get on that treadmill. And I did. Feel soooo much better now. There is still a snowstorm on the way. Work is still crazy. But I have had my time of sweat, my shower, and am now in my jammies typing this before heading to bed, where I fully expect to sleep very well.
Life is good. Keep Sparking!
Monday, December 17, 2012
I survived Saturday just fine. Sunday, not so much. In fact, everything was going well Sunday until I started in on packing the last box for Afghanistan. This one will race his departure date to get there. If it arrives before he departs, he gets to drink the coffee. If not, he'll have to come share mine while his replacement drinks the coffee and eats the jerky and crackers.
Anyway, somewhere in the process of packing that box, and thinking about the cookies I sent in the last one, something snapped and I mixed up my last stick of butter into cookie dough. A small batch, mind you... but I got myself started down the road I don't like the end of.
So, this morning, back to rational behavior. The blood bank at noon... success in donating, which makes me feel good. And on with the rest of my life.
No beating myself up. But back to remembering what I really want, remembering those things I cannot control (like whether my son gets the job he wants back here stateside), and letting God do His own job!
So today has been a good day, and now we look forward to the first Winter Storm of the season... can you believe it's this late? Predicted for Wednesday. Droughts are nasty in some ways, but they have kept us with safer driving conditions for a longer time. Now it's time to settle in to Winter for sure.
Spark on, friends near and far! Life IS good!
Saturday, December 15, 2012
I wrote this cryptic phrase in my Tuesday blog at the close of my report about the work Holiday dinner: "monitoring for any adverse reaction... which will become really important about Saturday noonish."
So one astute reader asked what was happening Saturday noonish?
Well, Saturday noonish is one of those points in my week where I am at risk. It is when events in the week that I *didn't* take care of with self-talk and resolution of emotions can "get me".
Depending on how Saturday morning went... I am capable of copping an attitude. By Saturday noonish, I know that my son has been online or not (if I don't see that little red dot of presence online, it's a risk factor for anxiety). By Saturday noonish, I've either taken my long run, or put it off... and if I put it off, I'm at risk. By Saturday noonish, I know if I've had enough sleep... if I haven't, I'm at risk. By Saturday noonish, I have either eaten enough for lunch, or started down the path to overdoing it.
Saturday, you see, I'm at home with the ingredients available to get myself into all kinds of trouble.
Today, Saturday noonish, I was just getting back from my long, slow run. I was full of endorphins. So it looks like I passed this week's "Saturday noonish" bad reaction risk test.
And right now, Saturday mid-afternoon? I'm cozy in my sweats, feeling virtuous having eaten a healthy lunch following the long slow run, and stretched and showered, and read some Spark blogs.
A word picture to Spark your day? On the way home from a morning appointment, I spotted Santa Claus riding a bicycle, leading a group of jogging elves down the MoPac trail! I couldn't get my phone out fast enough to take a photo of Santa, but it looks to me he's taken on some healthy initiatives himself!
On a more sober note: I am joyful today, but do recognize that some horrific events have been in the news. I am mindful and sad for those who have suffered large losses. I pray for them and for those who care about them. As with laughter at a funeral, the two live side by side: this is human. Hug your loved ones tight. Cherish every moment you get with them. But then, remember to breathe, and keep on nurturing your health, so you can be there for them for a long time to come.
Friday, December 14, 2012
I'm pleased to have made it through a stressful, chopped up, interruption-filled work week. This morning I was feeling a bit sorry for myself driving to work, but gave myself a good talking to as I drove, and by the time I was through the first meeting and a break walk, I was pretty much OK again.
I met my line in the sand obligations for the day, and I ended the work week with at least one positive note: got something working after the choppy week that *should* have only taken about four hours of uninterrupted time. Ever have a week like that?
My brother talks about "Pointy hair" activities at work. Well both of my meetings today would fall into that category: things you do because you must because that's the way they are done at your organization, even though you have other urgent "real" work to do. If you don't know where the phrase comes from, you don't read Dilbert. I'm usually fairly tolerant of these kinds of thing... it's the reality of my working world. However, this past three weeks, since I got back from Florida, I have been simmering my way to a boil, and as I told one colleague, "if I were a tea-kettle, at this point I would be whistling, loudly!"
Anyway, I didn't get done what I *most wanted* to or *hoped* to get done this work week, but I got *something* done that also needed to be done. I therefore will declare victory for the week and get on with my life!
You can see how dealing with feelings was important this week, right?
So, on to anticipation of the Day itself, of Christmas. Here's the deal: I will most likely be alone that day. That's part of the feeling sorry for myself. It's more than being physically alone, though. I'm working on it, Spark friends, really I am. Self-pity is not a pretty feeling, but you know what? I'm staring it in the face and accepting that it has presented itself to me. Doesn't mean I have to act out based on it. I will treat myself gently in ways that don't involve overeating!
I will wrap a gift or two to myself to open on the day. I will make a nice, portion controlled meal for dinner, featuring things I really like. I will sneak into a church service. I will fill my house with music and candlelight. And I will find something to do that will help someone less fortunate. Because nothing says Christmas like giving.
It will be a good Christmas, kept in the spirit as it should be.
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