Do you ever have those days (or weeks) where you just think, how did I get here? Where am I going? What am I doing? Why am I doing this? Well, I have been having them, a lot lately. Sometimes, those thoughts can be so debilitating that I can’t think~ that is when I actually have quiet time to think. I am usually one to stay up late to carve out this kind of quiet, thinking time, but this summer I have been exhausted and haven’t been staying up as late. Now as we enter August, all of those unthought thoughts are catching up with me and putting me in a tailspin. I am aware that these feelings usually creep up during a transition in my life. To me, summer is a perpetual transition. It is a set of routines and schedules that are always in flux, at least in my house. There have been times that I just want to hit PAUSE so that I can think, process, and act before another minute passes me by.
Sometimes, I wonder if my mom wanted to hit the pause button in life. I mean, I surely didn’t think anything was wrong with my life as a kid, in fact I think my childhood was pretty amazing. Now that I am a mother I am hit with an overwhelming sense of gratitude for that life, all while trying to figure out how to replicate it for my kids. Sometimes, it’s just too much. Did my parents think it was too much? Maybe, but it is evident that my parents loved being parents. It is clear that they still love being parents to the 4 of us and they especially love the grandparent side of things! They always remind me how fast the years go by and to enjoy all the days, even the long ones. I try to remember that, and often find myself saying, “I’m gonna miss this one day” during especially trying moments. It’s also during these realizations that I think about the fact that my childhood was my life, and my kids’ childhood is their life… but in actuality these two sets of lives are not separate, they are one and they are mine. This is MY life. And while there are times that I feel totally eroded, washed up, and burned out I feel that one day I will miss feeling this way and wish it all back… well maybe not all of it.
At times, I feel as eroded as these tree roots, yet the tree stands tall. It has adapted and survived nearly impossible conditions. This tree is in a slot canyon we hiked through in New Mexico. The tree was beautiful and had a special energy to it that drew me in. I had to ‘pause’ my hike and just take in that energy. Somehow, against all odds it was standing there…even without steady ground, little water, and limited sunlight…there it stood. Tall and unwavering. I feel like I am that tree in the middle of the canyon. The tree is part of something much bigger and grander though. It is part of a beautiful set of mountains, tall and majestic. They can be seen from miles around. My life, full of people that I love make up my mountains and the beautiful scenery that surround them.
When I think about my life, I want to think of the majestic beauty that I have created, and continue to create. Which is why, I need to pause and have a reset. We reset our clocks, our bodies, our furniture, our diets, but rarely our mental state. Mine is in need of a reset, which is why I am working on setting up some boundaries. I need to learn how to set limits that lead to a better mental state which impacts my overall happiness.
As this transition time, we call Summer, enters Fall I am resetting myself by setting new boundaries and limits for my time so that I can be as limitless as that eroded tree in the canyon. I want to live my beautiful and messy life, with passion and unwavering purpose.
So today, if you feel like I do, I challenge you to step back from your life and see the beauty you have created. Look up and see, really see, what you have made and how you are living. If you aren’t happy, make a change, but only if that change will lead to your overall happiness. I know that setting limits will be very difficult for myself, but I have to make this change. Today, be the unwavering, somehow still standing eroded tree that stands tall and strong against all odds. You are STRONG enough to live this life and you have deep enough roots to withstand any force that comes your way. Live with PURPOSE and PASSION. Push PAUSE and RESET, but LIVE your LIFE. It’s yours and it’s your only one.
There are no happy accidents.