Old hurts

A few days ago my neck and shoulder started hurting me again, it hasn’t done that in over a year.  I used to get it all the time.  It would cause pain that would lead to a headache.  Massage would often alleviate it but it was something I often suffered through. 

I was actually surprised to see this pain surface lately so I started thinking what has changed – why now?  With it being summer vacation – both children are home and we are busy experiencing life and having fun and though I am having a good time,  it can be stressful to get to swimming lessons on time or to make sure we get out and do something.  That was leading to worry in regards to – are we doing enough? Am I letting them do too much of one thing and not another?  Slowly and without me even realizing it I lead myself into a world of shoulds and expectations.  It’s easy to slip back and when you do sometimes you don’t even notice it.

They say your shoulders carry your shoulds and your neck expectations, meaning when you have that type of pain you’re living in a world of shoulds  and expectations – that’s more than correct for me. Upon realizing I need to let my kids just be kids and not worry about if I am meeting their academic expectations or if I have planned enough I have also realized that’s spilled into me – “I should look differently than I do right now, people expect this from me”. I am not really living in the moment for myself.

Something that I also find is happening to me now is I am shedding a lot of unwanted layers. I am slowly changing but it’s not really change, it’s me allowing myself to be the true me and that can’t really happen without shedding some layers.  These old hurts bubble up and say: here I am, deal with me and learn from me and now move on.

Stepping into your own skin is a process which takes time and slowly you strip away the layers, eventually all you will be left with is you, completely and utterly unfiltered. 

Playing ball

My husband has coached our son’s t-ball team this summer and has had a great time doing so.  He is a very easy going person who enjoys a variety of activityand sports  so it’s no wonder that coaching has been an enjoyable experience for him.

Tonight was their last scheduled game and my husband proceeded to invite the team over to our backyard in a few weeks for some snacks and fun. He went ahead and did it as it wasn’t a big deal to him, it was a big deal to me. I was upset because I wasn’t on board with the idea – fearing it would generate a lot of work for me on a weeknight and those are when I am the most tired. That’s not the real fear though, what’s really bothering me is trust and judgment.  

I don’t trust everyone’s parents, truth is I don’t know them but my first reaction isn’t to give anyone the benefit of the doubt.  I have to observe you, you have to earn my trust.  It’s how I was socialized, it was an incredibly skeptical world and today’s society has only added fuel to my fire.  Fear mongering regarding trust is a big thing in today, you can’t trust anyone, you can’t be too careful. BUT, the thing is – I want to trust you.  I want to welcome you with open arms with my heart full of love, it’s just decades of conditioning has made it hard.  This is one of he harder things I have to overcome, learning to trust and learning to love everyone. 

The other thing that popped into my fearful head about hosting this backyard party was judgment.  This is perceived judgment from others.  There are a few families on the team that are very affluent, with large homes and lifestyles to accompany them: I fear their judgment of my modest home.  I fear my home is not that impressive. Even as I type this I know it really doesn’t matter but part of me wants to fix things up or make things perfect.  I want to impress people I don’t really know and probably won’t see ever again and that makes no sense.  I can never know what people truly think and even if they did find my home absolutely disgusting it’s my home not theirs and I love it; so if I love it then that is all that matters.

My husband thought none of those things when he invited everyone today.  What he thought was what a great chance for the kids to play together some more and the parents to have some fun too.  He thought, this will be fun and it will.  Hubby has his moments where he can drive me insane but I do wish I can  be more like him in the sense of going with the flow and welcoming everyone with open arms.  

I have said it thousands of times but practice really does make perfect. So I will continue practicing ❤️

Scope it out

I had my endoscopy yesterday, a test where they take a long tube with a camera on it and essentially shove it down your throat into your stomach to see what’s going on, and in my case take a little biopsy of the stomach to really see what’s going on.  I was nervous, but I was almost proud of myself that I didn’t live there. I had many moments here or there where I felt some fear or anxiety but I didn’t live there for weeks. The procedure itself wasn’t that bad but today and last night my stomach is sore.  I am sure having a camera in there and having a little tiny piece removed wouldn’t make it feel good and probably takes a couple of days to feel better again. 

Before the procedure began I spoke with my doctor and he informed me an ultrasound revealed some enlarged blood vessels on my liver, which is a thing and it’s not a big deal at all but they wanted to schedule an MRI to make sure that is indeed what it is. I panicked, not because of what it could be, but because of the test itself. I am a bit claustrophobic and though have made great strides to let go of this fear, I was paralyzed with it quickly as I thought of being trapped in a tube for a significant period of time.

This is where I feel some happiness and almost pride for myself.

I let myself feel that fear. I just let it be.  Then as I started to calm down I realized that if I close my eyes ahead of time and start to meditate I bet I can have this test with no problems.  Though it probably won’t be the ideal place for a meditation it will be a nice to have scheduled time for a nice long meditation.  Same with the endoscopy, though I am feeling pain and discomfort now and the procedure itself wasn’t the most fun I have had, I did get some time to rest and just be lazy and relaxed.  Though these things cause some discomforts there are some positives as well and that often translates into some quiet time for myself. 

I have had a few tests and the MRI appears to be the last one, but I feel like I am getting some answers to some questions and even if they aren’t the answers I had hoped for, and even if they aren’t even answers, I am finally asking the questions – I am using my voice and that in itself feels really good.

Managing expectations 

Life leads you in many different kinds of directions and none two directions are exactly the same.  A family gathering with some will be different than others.

This week we went on vacation and visited some family and I found myself getting frustrated especially at the start of the week because I was expecting a different kind of treatment.  I was unfairly comparing the sitatuation to others who may have been there instead. I was getting mad and frustrated that they weren’t helping as much and that if others would have been in their place I wouldn’t have been so exhausted with the kids.

Let’s face it when you travel with kids, it can be a little harder because you are out of your element so those times will be awesome if you have people around who can lend a big hand making it almost feel like you are on a vacation yourself.  Those experiences are really nice but they shouldn’t be expected,  nothing should be expected and that was were I experienced some conflict and frustration.

I expected a vacation entirely for me, I expected the behaviours of some family members not appreciating the ones in front of me and the most important thing: I experienced conflict leading to anger and frustrating because I was too busy trying to expect a type of behaviour instead of accepting and rolling with the waves.

Truth is I had a very nice vacation and there were plenty to be grateful for. I did receive a lot of moments to myself,  something I am not normally privy to but I kept wanting more or expecting something different;  for a few days it merely caused me frusrration instead of enjoyment.

Happy people don’t always have the best moments but they make the best out of their moments and always find gratitude within them; this is an ideal that I love and continue to practice.  It does take me practice, and I have to be gentle with myself as I do practice.  Somehow along the way I have been conditioned to look for the negative and dwell on that, to undo the past conditioning will take some time but it is more that possible.

As I move forward I need to remind myself to manage my expectations and realize they are in fact expectations and to let them go.  Expectations do me no good whatsoever and the best thing I can do is roll with the waves that come riding my way. 

Me, being me

Looking back in my life I often think, I wish I had done this or I wish I would have been more assertive but the truth is every moment that I have had has led me to where I am right now and where I am right now is awesome.

This week has been a tiring one for me with both boys home and lots of fun activities  to keep everyone entertained this summer vacation but I have had a really great time while doing it.   I have truly enjoyed myself and have noticed just how much I have come into my own.

I post a lot about my struggles and I think transparency is important for everyone – I am a big believer of keeping it real and part of that is posting the other side of the coin by saying “I am doing amazing!”.  I am hesitant to say that I am doing so much better than before because I feel that implies I was wrong before and needed to be fixed.  I do however think that I am allowing myself to be me, the true me, uninhibited.  Do I do this perfectly? Hell no! But I am doing the best I can and I have learned and continue to learn that’s all I need to do.  If it fits for me and allows me to be me, then I am doing pretty darn good! 

So tonight I’ll raise a glass for myself, not for all the improvements I may or may not have made, not for the progress in my life, not for the solutions I may or may not have but for me learning and being me without holding anything back.

Name it and allow it

I do this thing where I look for my failures, actually I expect them daily as if it’s something I know is coming and loathe each day. As I go about my day, there is always a point where I don’t react in a way that I wanted to; I feel like I was too angry, to mean, it wasn’t coming from a place of love and then I say “I was doing so well…”. I am not really allowing myself to feel the angry, the mean, the sad, and I am finding what it does is send me into a place where I am mad at myself for being mad. That just produces more frustration and anger and before I know it I am living there.

I have started to allow myself these emotions, and when I do allow it, I don’t live there as much.  I say to myself : I am angry, and the mere thought is often enough to diffuse it, sometimes it isn’t and I just let it be; when I accept it, name it and let it be I can move from it quickly.  I think this is part of my on-going perfection recovering that I have been dealing with. I suppose I think I should be all happiness all the time and anything less is imperfection. Even though deep down inside I don’t want to strive for perfection my brain is constantly telling me that I do, I should.

I just need to keep practicing my new habits, and allow all emotions to simply be. I know perfection doesn’t really exist and I know that striving for it does nothing but provide anguish and frustration because I could never obtain it.   So going forward I shall live in love, and sometimes in anger, if anything does surface, I’ll name it, and allow it to be.

Balance in moderation 

In the past to be a healthy and fit person it required extreme discipline, it was all I knew, I couldn’t do moderation – it was all or nothing. I was not happy living an incredibly disciplined life because it was fuelled with hate for myself.  On the contrast I wasn’t happy leading a life that had no self control, it was also fuelled for hate for myself.  

I am at a point in my life where I am quite happy and I am learning to find the joy in all that I do.  I would like my daily habits to reflect a happy joyful and gentle moderation of life instead of going from one extreme to another. 

Right now I am being a little hard on myself,  many celebrations and backyard bbq’s have lead to an overindulgence on my part and it seems like I have been stuck in that mode for a while.  I am in a spot of self hatred today which has lead to a major overindulgence and I truly wish for this behaviour to stop.  

I think that sums up my whole life: one extreme or the other, never gentle moderation.  It’s not just food or fitness that falls into this ideal, my moods often follow a similar path: one extreme to another (I am super cranky or extremely nice). What I would like to do is start practicing moderation in everything I do and being very gentle with myself in it. 

As I continue a more equal balanced pace I need to remind myself to keep it more even levelled.  Bouncing from high to low to high, in everything that I do leaves me vibrating in a way that is impossible to maintain and usually ends with me falling on my face, like today. 

Today I strive for balance in moderation.  Moving forward my intention is an even levelled moderation, balance in every aspect of my life. One day at a time ❤️