Pamela Llano Zesty Mom
The days are winding down until my Eldest Girl Child heads out into the world for her 8 month adventure in Ecuador~ to live with an unknown host family in an unknown part of the country and work an unknown internship. I’m realizing as I type this just how many unknowns that is, and what a brave and amazing young woman I have been blessed with.
A number of our young family friends are also flying from their nests this fall, but most of them know exactly where they are heading, where they’ll live and who with and for the most part, how they will spend their days. Most could also drive home for holidays or even long weekends.
My Girl has none of these cushions. But even though it’s a lot of trust in the unknown, as her mama, I know in my heart she will do great.
At 18, my Girl Child has already been navigating young adulthood pretty darn well, but all of the prep work, paperwork, bureaucracy, and loose ends she has to deal with to make her upcoming adventure happen are like adulting on steroids. Understandably, there’s been a bit of stress and emotion permeating our happy home life lately.
On a recent random day, I noticed that she was terribly frustrated and annoyed ~ and if her burning glare and verbal barrage were any indicator, she was about to karate kick her brother in the throat. Around that time, something in my mama instincts revved up and told me that I needed to get my family out of the house and into some nature.
We have lots of nature, quite literally in our backyard, but there is also wifi and the view of the home and the impending feeling of all the things that need to be done.
I knew that wasn’t going to cut it this time. I needed to get her away from all of it, someplace where she literally couldn’t do anything about all the distractions and where she could sleep uninterrupted and under the stars. In my vision, we would preferably be next to running water.
So, I posed the idea of taking her and her brother camping~ just for a night to someplace nearby~ a little last rendezvous to the woods.
The three of us have had so many good times (and some not so great ones) adventuring near and far in a tent. We’ve dreamed and schemed, laughed and planned, philosophized and grown together, and seen so much of our beautiful country with our cheap fabric walls as shelter.
Taking one last trip before the Girl headed out sounded good in theory, but with all the to-do’s and life in general, we were were all a little wishy washy about my lukewarm presentation of the idea.
But as the stress and exhaustion wore on my kid, I knew I needed to do an intervention.
The Boy, had been busy most of the summer, and had just returned from several days of backpacking himself. He was tired and reluctant to pack a bag and leave the comfort of his bed again so soon. But I knew what we needed was to be together~ both kids and me.
So, I gave the Boy a hard stare and told him that we needed to go support his sister. He knows where my hard stares go, so he sighed and repacked his backpack.
I scrambled to finish my work for the day, threw together a random assortment of food, clothing and shelter and kidnapped them both.
Well, I couldn’t exactly kidnap them because they could easily overpower me, but I firmly told them to grab their bags because we were going. I took the dogs too, knowing that they are going to miss the Girl in her absence and that the Elder Dog doesn’t have as many adventures left in her.
We loaded the car, and hit the road~ And as with our 6 state Southwest adventure years ago, our destination was not exactly known~ except this time we’d only be gone one night and only traveling a few hours from home. But still, the feelings of freedom, exploration and escape with my chillens were there, and honestly, they were quite refreshing.
We drove about an hour into the mountains, watching the scenery change as rapidly as our moods. As our car went up in elevation, our stress levels went down.
The first two campgrounds we stopped at were fine, but there were people and other dogs, and realizing that we don’t always like people and our dogs are really rather ill behaved, we kept moving.
Thankfully, the third stop was a charm~ we found a spot along a huge and fast flowing creek and we were the only people in the whole campground.
Just me, my kids, my dogs and nature. Perfect.
We set up camp, hiked around and explored a bit, created a decent dinner from random ingredients, and hiked some more to watch the sunset. Then we roasted marshmallows over the fire and told stories and laughed under the dark starry sky.
The bickering floated away and we were all just happy and together and I was so, so, so very glad that I had followed my instincts on this one.
They were both glad too~ I could see it in their beings, but they said so as well. They exhaled, relaxed and smiled all the way from their inner souls.
We had all that I had wished for. Stars overhead, trees all around, clean water flowing and each other. As I looked at my offspring, I realized how very much things had changed since their younger days of tent life. Now, they could share in the driving and wander off as they pleased, But some things were also still the same. Goofy jokes and a whole lotta making fun of each other and life in general was still a prominent part of our time.
The next day, we ate breakfast and took a short walk along the creek before we packed up and headed down the hill towards home. As if on some GPS location activated system, when we rounded the corner a few blocks from where we live, the bickering started back up.
All I could muster was a sigh and weak request to please don’t. I still don’t know really what was up with this, but it wasn’t how I wanted to spend the last few days with my Girl Child in the nest.
Thankfully, they somehow must have realized they didn’t want to spend their time that way either, and we got back to the business of living, mostly happily.
I am ever so glad for that, but still, there’s a sadness in my heart. As we prep for her looming departure, I can’t really fathom her absence for such a long period of time. I don’t really want to.
I’ve spent her whole life encouraging her to spread her wings and know that she could fly. And she’s doing it. She’s doing exactly what I worked and hoped for, and I couldn’t be prouder of her than I am, but still my heart aches.
I know I have so much to do before I drive her to her pre-departure trainings, but my motivation is fairly non-existent, and a fairly big part of me just wants to stop time.
But I can’t stop time and I know it. I sort of feel like curling up in bed with an alcoholic beverage, but I realize that in the middle of a weekday afternoon, that would be both socially unacceptable, and a bad example for the kids.
Besides, that gives the impression that I’m all sad, and I’m not. I’m more like a big mixed up potion of emotions~ happy, sad, proud, excited~ it's fairly volatile and possibly explosive in what could just as likely be laughter or tears at any minute. The force of either would most likely frighten anyone who didn’t know me.
Anyhow, I realize that the thing I am sad about~ the thing that I’m grieving... it’s that my family will never ever be the same again. It will be beautiful and it will change and grow and do what living things do, but it will never ever be the same. And I will miss that.
My kids and I had a great run, and a whole lotta fun living and learning together. I hope they loved it as much as I did.
Have you ever had one of those days where it seems that just about every single thing that could possibly make your life annoying is happening on repeat?
You know, the kind of day where a dog throws up on the carpet and you spill your coffee on your new shirt and to top it all off, you give yourself a black eye from literally tripping and falling into a trash can?
Yes, that actually happened.
I fell into a friggen trash can.
Like with my head and upper body entirely inside of it. And it hurt. Like heck.
To be honest, it was a green waste can, but that’s only slightly better.
OK, maybe it’s a lot better. It was just dried leaves and twigs that got stuck in my hair and eyeballs rather than actual garbage, but it was still awfully unpleasant and humbling.
To be fair, the can does have a warning on the lid that specifically says not to pull or move it with the lid open. But, that’s the kind of cautionary labeling I normally make fun of~ like the infopic with the toddlers head stuck in a bucket, or the warning not to iron on a transfer while wearing the shirt.
Are we really such a mass collection of morons that we need all these warnings?
Well, apparently this one was there for a reason.
It seems it's not just other senseless fools, but me, myself and I that's the reason they need to put the warnings on products. But, unlike some people, I’m only going to laugh at myself about it, and not file a lawsuit because i was dumb enough to fall in a trash can~ because it’s my own ridiculous fault.
Anyhoo, I was simply trying to clean up some piles of leaves and debris around the yard. It was hot and I wasn’t in the best mood and it seemed unnecessary to close the lid to move the cart 5 feet.
But, when I rolled the can forward, the lid leaned back towards me creating a V shaped tripping hazard, which I neglected to see and promptly stuck my foot in, tumbled over, flipping the can on it’s side and toppling me head first into it.
Did I mention my cheekbone slamming into the top edge and my glasses flying off my head?
It was probably hilarious to witness, but I was living it, which is generally significantly less funny.
I found myself on the ground literally with my head and upper body inside the can~ like a cozy little nest of nature, except it wasn’t cozy at all, it was painful and disorienting.
Apparently, I also slammed my bicep into the can as well because I wound up with a big unsightly bruise, and since it’s too hot to wear long sleeves, I’ve been asked about it by approximately 12 million people in the last week.
And I really need a better story than “I fell in a trash can.”
That’s just plain embarrassing.
Anyway, the bad day mojo continued and leaked into some other days culminating on the morning that I was trying to get my booty dressed, ready and out of the house at an hour that is much earlier than I normally choose to make public appearances. (Don’t judge~ some people are night owls…)
This particular day, I am intentionally trying not to rush around like a chicken without a head because I’m going to be spending the day at a workshop full of smart and successful business women, and I don’t want to be that lady who runs in last minute with crumbs on her face, coffee on her shirt and crazy hair.
No, I’m moving along as calm & steady as I can when I realize that a little food would be a good plan so that I have more than caffeine in my system. No problem, I’ll just toast a bagel.
So, I toast it, forget about it until it’s cold and toast it again. Paying much more attention so as not to burn it, I re-warm it, only to find we have no butter, no cream cheese, no anything that sounds remotely good on this dry hunk of carbs.
Annoyed as heck that I’m going to be starve, I stomp my way around to finish packing my things for the day. Then at the last minute, I remember there is some butter in the freezer. I try to carve off frozen hunks, but they just lay there on my now cold bagel and refuse to spread, let alone melt. I wrap the unpleasant mess into a napkin and throw it into my purse, and jump in the car, now rushing for time.
Before I even get the car out of the garage, the friggen gas light comes on.
I'm not even kidding.
My eyeballs pretty much popped out of my head and thankfully the neighbors were not home because I literally screamed like a wild banshee or possibly an insane asylum patient~ definitely like a crazy lady anyway, and I did it all the way down the street until I reached the stop sign where I paused for breath.
It was a lovely example of composure and healthy emotional maturity.
Actually my throat hurt and I was exhausted. I wanted to gas up my car and just keep driving away from everything and towards an airport where I could fly away to someplace like Cancun or Australia.
But, then I realized that I'd still be making the house payments on the home I drove away from, and that would be really stupid if I wasn't even enjoying it. Then I remembered that I'd probably want to take the people who live there with me, because I actually do love them, and I also like them after all.
So, I used the pause as a cue to keep breathing. I didn't exactly calm down, but I didn't kill anyone either, so that was good. I got gas, and arrived at my destination. I wasn't too late and the rest of that day got better.
There have been some up days and some down days since then. There have been bickering children and foggy airport detours and more spilled coffee and smoke alarms and exceptionally overcooked and uncomfortably chewy corn on the cob.
But I've been trying to focus on the good stuff.
The bruises have healed (although my ego might be mildly scarred) and I'm moving on.
Since then, I've reminded myself a bazillion times that some days are like that. Even in Cancun or Australia.
Do you have a Bad Day(s) story? If so, please share it in the comments below. Laughter, after all, is the very best medicine, and it's so good to know we're not alone.
I started writing this post over the summer, and actually finished in Sept. Then, somehow, I deleted the whole thing, which I found ironic since I was writing about abundance.
It began on a hot summer afternoon, as I knelt down in the orchard of the property I was preparing to move to, looking at literally dozens of apricots that had fallen to the ground. All around me was the color green~ leaves, grass, bushes, trees~ all so alive and healthy and such a contrast from the browns and yellows of the dry land I was leaving.
This new landscape was so much easier on my eyeballs than the much harsher beauty of the foothills I had lived in for over a decade~ so much so, that almost overwhelmed me.
Little things, like knowing I would have enough water for the whole family to take showers AND to run a load of laundry ALL IN THE SAME MORNING. I could even run the dishwasher the same day and still be OK. Like knowing I could buy plants if I wanted to and actually put them in the ground because there was real soil that actually contained dirt and not just rocks that bend and break metal tools, and yeah, there was WATER to keep them alive.
And being only 5 minutes from a coffee shop or a store~ many, if not most Americans probably take these things for granted, but I had been without them for so long, that I actually felt weepy with joy about it all.
As I sat there looking around, pondering my blessings, and wondering when I had become such a sentimental and emotional person, it hit me.
Literally…. Like, “BONK!” I actually got conked in the head.
It was a peach that fell from the tree and hit me right on the noggin.
The actual hit to the head came with what I guess would be called a simultaneous epiphany. Just a single word came to mind.
That was my word for 2014~ That was how I most wanted to feel, and that was definitely what I had all around me.
Before I could relish too deeply in this thought, I noticed something mildly disturbing. A rodent~ some sort of mole, vole, mouse like creature. Something other than a rat, and it was lying in the hot sun in my yard, looking for all purposes, dead.
I began thinking of all the reasons (fears) of why there would be a dead rodent lying there in my perfectly lovely orchard. What if the lawn mowing guys had used some sort of poison that could be a potential danger to my dogs and cats? What if it had a hideous, painful and contagious disease? What if it was a trick and it was going to jump up and bite me in the face? Then, I noticed a twinkle in the rodent’s eye.
Not a mischievous or playful twinkle or even a menacing one. Nothing like that~ just an indicator that it might, in fact, have a bit of life left in it, but not much.
As a liker of animals of all kinds, even rodents, even if they do sometimes carry hideous diseases and plagues, I couldn’t just let the poor thing wither in the sun and die.
But, as much as I wanted to help, I certainly wasn’t going to touch the mystery rodent. So, I picked up a peach from the ground next to me and threw it toward the creature to see if it would move.
I didn’t think I would actually hit it, but I did, and it did a sort of writhing wiggle which made me jump and flail about in shock, doing my own sort of writhing wiggle thing.
Once I caught my breath, I noticed that the little creature appeared to have its’ two right legs stuck under a peach (not the peach I had thrown, but yet another one~ they were all over the place~ seriously, I’m not kidding with the abundance)
The poor thing was trapped. I still wasn’t going to touch it, so I got a stick, and poked the peach until it rolled off and the second it was free, that half dead looking rodent sprung up, dug a hole and disappeared faster than I could even blink, let alone speak (and that’s fast!)
I gave a verbal warning / request to the ground he disappeared into, asking him to move on to different pastures before I moved my cats and dogs in with their sharp teeth and love of shaking things, and lesser appreciation for the life of a rodent.
So, there I was, left there alone with the fruit falling in this wonderful new yard that surrounded the home I would soon occupy. It was a real, grown up house~ surely the nicest thing I had lived in since I moved out from under my parents’ roof. The street was paved, and flat and there was good internet. I was home.
As I contemplated how wonderful all of this abundance was, and how miraculous that my word for the year was once again coming to fruition (literally) I couldn’t help but think of the little rodent and wonder if there wasn’t some metaphorical symbolism in all that. (My mind just works that way. I can’t help it.)
That little creature was also surrounded by abundance, but it seems he’d been trapped by it, and nearly smothered under the weight of it. Theoretically, he could have tried to eat his way out, which I like to think I would have done in his place. Unlike the rock climber who had to saw his own arm off, or the Donner Party, it was a peach, so it would have been pleasant, albeit overwhelming since it was almost the same size as he was.
Anyhoo, I think there must be some lesson on paying attention and not getting stuck or being creative or maybe all of those things. In any case, abundance in the form of fruit trees, ability to do laundry and proximity to coffee isn’t going to solve all of life’s problems, but it sure is more than enough to be grateful for. And I am so very grateful.
Life is good, indeed. In fact, it’s down right abundant.
Journal in my lap, coffee cup in one hand and purple writing pen in the other, I’m soaking up the quiet of a morning that feels like autumn. Even though the neighborhood is awake and chattering, all of my nocturnal household is still sleeping, so it still feels almost like silence. These moments where no one wants anything from me are worth skipping sleep for.
A friend asked me the other day if I’m still writing. As I’m randomly clearing my head on paper, trying to start the day with gratitude, and to process some of life’s questions without over thinking them, I realize that I’ve not finished, let alone published a single piece of writing over the entire summer.
I’d like to say I took a summer sabbatical. I’ve always liked the sound of that… “Sorry, I won’t be able to do that (insert whatever thing someone wants from me here)... I’ll be on sabbatical.”
Although that word does sound fabulous, it kind of implies that one is getting a paid rest. Or a rest at the least. But restful would not be an adequate description of my summer.
Time off was not on the agenda. Moving on was.
Since May, I’ve packed up my home of 11 years, the place my children spent the majority of their formative childhood years and put it on the market. I dealt with cleaning and showings and offers and counter offers and more paperwork than seems possible.
I’ve found homes for my sweet goats and chicken, some of whom have been a part of my life almost as long as my Boy Child, and all of whom were loved.
I sold our house and moved my family and their lifetime’s accumulation of stuff, driving my big 24 foot moving truck with Sacajawea painted on the side and seemingly no shocks into the night.
I’ve gone through roller coasters of legal nonsense and headaches that cost ridiculous amounts of time, money and pain.
I held our beloved dog and good friend as he took his last breath. Then dug for hours in the night, and laid him to rest by moonlight.
I didn’t do any of these things alone though. I had peeps. Awesome kids, super kind partner, loving friends and supportive community.
With them by my side, I also did lots of other things that made my life feel full, but in good ways. There were summer concerts, big & small, camping in lovely locations, water parks, meeting my partner’s parents, a couple of quick trips to pretty places with nice people, and getting settled in our wonderful new home.
It’s felt a lot like a roller coaster with highs of awesome good stuff and lows of really friggen hard things. The ups and downs can be sort of overwhelming at times, but as soon as I start to think my life is intense, I get on Facebook for 5 minutes and see that I am far from alone. Life, apparently is intense.
A friend who’s still in her 30s is dealing with breast cancer. She's not a smoker or drinker, but a homeschool mom with 4 kids. Another friend has a son almost the same age as my Boy Child, and while I am flipping out about my kid going to the store without permission and getting into tussles, her boy has spent months in a hospital bed in pain that doctors can’t fix. And then there’s a friend with a marriage that you have visibly seen the love in, who confesses that life has broken them to the point of separation.
How the friggen heck does this stuff happen?
It’s incomprehensible that the same life that hands out the laughter and friendship and smiles on the faces of our children also hands these crazy and unimaginable intensities. But whether I can understand it or not, it still happens.
So many of the things in my own little life that I pondered and over analyzed, I also started to write about, but never finished. Of the 9 drafts that I started over the summer, I only finished one, and then I somehow managed to delete it in a formatting error with no back up. Ironically, it was an essay on abundance.
But, moving on….that’s the theme here. I guess we all just keep moving on. That’s the beauty of it, and that’s the oppressive part of it. I wonder how we do it, and the only answer I can think of comes from a children’s book called “We’re Going on A Bear Hunt” which I have read aloud 9,475,682 times. (There is no actual hunting and no bears are harmed in the making of the book :-) )
“We can’t go over it. We can’t go under it. We have to go through it.”
And we do.
As we were decorating the grave of our sweet old dog friend, My Girl Child pointed out how exhausting grief is, but that nothing stops~ the world just keeps moving on.
If we're lucky, we have people by our side to love us when we are grieving and who we can also love up when they need it. Having people to laugh and cry with is what keeps us moving.
I’m more grateful than ever for those smiles and laughs and all the huge love that surrounds me.
And I’m super grateful when I see the sun shining on the shoulders of a sick kid who hasn’t seen it in too long, and when I read the courageous words of a mother who is planning her scarf wardrobe to cover her head that she knows will soon be hairless (and whom I think could rock a neon pink wig) and when I see a photo of a date night with the faces of people who you can tell still love each other no matter how hard life gets.
These people don’t know it, but they are giving strength and courage and hope to so many of us who witness their stories and hardships and triumphs, whether up close or from afar. When you don’t talk or see each other on a regular basis, you might not realize the complicated ways that your stories are woven together with other people.
When my friend asked me about writing, I had been selfishly thinking that I should get back to it because it helped me heal and process. She told me that I should get back to it because stories helped other people.
And they do. I don’t mean my stories that roam and ramble and often have no discernible point, but all of our stories of being stuck and of realizing that sometimes you can’t go over it or under it~ Our universal stories of finding a way to go through it, and eventually moving on.
I woke up the other morning and learned that Maya Angelou had died.
I hadn't even had coffee. I hadn't even gotten out of bed. Of course, I know that switching on a device and plugging into Facebook before my feet even touch the ground is not usually the best way to start a day, but I had done it, and it started the day in a most solemn way.
My foggy brain recalled that I had meant to post one of her poems back in April, but I couldn't honestly remember if I had done it. That poem, Still I Rise, is something I've repeated in my mind a lot in recent weeks, but I had no recollection of whether or not I'd written about it.
That led me to realize that I couldn't actually recall the last thing I had written here at all.
Upon looking, I discovered that while I did post my favorite Maya poem, I hadn't posted anything at all for the entire month of May.
Yeah. That's a big boofah in the world of writing~ you're supposed to be regular and consistent with creating content, and blah, blah, blah. Writers are supposed to write, but life happens, you know? And I'm willing to bet most people understand that.
I did write some in my journal and in random notebooks~ just nothing that ever needs to be seen by anyone else's eyeballs. My words seemed raw and vulnerable, and they kept rollings towards a roller coaster of emotional whack-o-ness that was not fit for public display.
To be honest, it just felt like a downer to keep going on about things that sucked~ like my words were stuck on worries and stresses and things I really had no control over. Not where I wanted to be and certainly not anywhere I wanted to invite others.
Writing can sometimes be one of the most therapeutic ways for me to process, but I really didn't feel like sharing and bumming other people (or myself) out with the hard side of life.
I realized though, that I've been capturing lots and lots of pictures of the awesome stuff that has also been filling my spring days. The good stuff, of which there is plenty.
Photos are intentional reminders of the moments I want to remember~ a symbolic way of choosing joy and love over fear and pain.
So~ this is how I missed May....
As I poured coffee for a zillion customers at the fundraiser brunch this morning, I flashed a toothy smile that I hoped would encourage large tips and said "Happy Easter" more times than I can count.
As the last of the tables were being cleared, someone mentioned to me that the pastor's message of the day had been that Easter isn't so much about "happiness."
Easter is a jumbled and mixed up bunch of feelings of dark and light, incredible hardship and amazing renewal~ kind of like real life. She suggested that wishing a "Joyful Easter" would be more appropriate because while "happy" is on the surface, "joy" runs deep.
In theory, I agree, although "Joyful Easter" just doesn't roll off the tongue so easily. Still, I get it and can relate.
In the weeks that have led up to Easter, I've had to work hard for the things that make me smile because life has been throwing a whole lotta heavy stuff at me at once. It's exhausting keeping up with the work of trying to cling to the joyful things when you're also dealing with stupid drama and the painful side of people and life.
Things like driving van loads of volunteering teenagers 800 miles to do construction work in a homeless village or getting up early to bake scones and serve coffee at a fundraising brunch with these same young people...these things require a good deal of caffeine in the best of times.
But, they also make me smile both inside and out, no matter what else is going on in the world.
So I still think it makes sense to do them as long as I can, even if I'm so tired I could cry ~ because if I let go of the good stuff, then I'm just left holding the cr@p....
It's Wednesday, and as far as trying to string together enough words of my own into something semi-coherent, well...I'm still not feeling it.
While I'm regrouping and counting my blessings~ loving my kids and dogs and cats and people close to me~ trying to juggle and not drop any firey balls being hurtled at me and to soak up the sunshine, flowers and pollen of spring before I wither~ for some reason I'm still on this poetry kick.
So, today I'm sharing a spoken word poem.
This piece really does nothing to improve my outlook, mood or faith in humanity, but it does give a painful example of the way people think and feel, the way we hurt each other, and go on like nothing happened....the vulnerability of opening yourself and your heart....Ouch......
****Warning~ Sad and Powerful Stuff....But It's worth your 2 minutes.
This guy blew me away and left me thinking that it may not be light switches or cracks in the sidewalk, but I bet almost everyone who has watched that video can relate to getting stuck, stuck, stuck on things that don't really matter in the end. And even sadder, many of them can relate to having had their hearts smashed in one way or another as well.
I told you it was sad. Sorry.
Sometimes life is rolling along all smoothly and you're working hard, but feeling all zesty and blessed, when all of a sudden, BAM! ~ Out of the blue, you get a sucker punch right to the gut.
You stagger around a little, and feel like vomiting, but recover enough to get up, and just when you start walking and let some semblance of a smile cross your face, WHAMO! ~ You're blindsided by a kick upside your head.
It's exhausting, and it hurts like heck, and it really makes going along with your normal plans difficult, but I bet you already know that because you've probably had some shizzle smack you when you weren't really expecting it either.
So, while my plan was to write something about poems today, because I read somewhere that April is National Poetry Month and I've been a homeschooling mom for so long that I get excited about such things, the reality is that I'm just not feeling it.
I'm feeling bruised and beaten and like I can't muster the effort to form words into any sort of rhythm. Even if I did, it would probably be depressing, possibly bitter and maybe even R rated for language because I am too emotionally exhausted to think clearly enough to come up with adjectives.
Instead, I'm sharing one of my all time favorite poems in the whole wide world. I read it aloud to my kids and I'm reading it over & over to myself, because these are the words I need to hear right now. The more I hear them, the more I know it's true. I'll Rise...
So, I have this “real job.” It’s actually a pretty cool one and it came to me in a pretty amazing way. But that story is for another time. For now, the point is just that I’m super happy to be able to support myself and my kids with a pretty flexible schedule and to do it mostly from home.
I’m blessed beyond measure and I know this, but just to clarify, it’s not all sunshine and roses. It takes some creative arranging and discipline (which has not always been my strongest gift) to manage getting the job done and dealing with kids, homeschooling and single mamahood / rural farm girl living with a petting zoo full of animals.
I’m not complaining~ I’m just saying…
Anyhoo~ one of the things that my job requires is monthly trips to the office, which is 175 miles over a winding mountain road to the small coastal town where the company is located. At first, I found myself whining, which was lame, I know, but still I was thinking...
“Oh my gosh~ I have to drive over to the coast every month. How am I gonna figure out what to do with the kids and their transportation and activities and the animals? Waaaahhh, blah, blah, blah."
In the midst of my complaining (side note: I almost referred to my complaining as wanking, because for years, that’s what I thought it meant. But, I was informed by my teens that it has a very different meaning. Oops….That explains the strange looks I’ve gotten when using that term in public. Learning all the time indeed…..) So, I was inspired by something the lovely and wise Marie Forleo said about re-framing our thinking.
I realized “What the heck am I talking about? I get to go to the coast every month....”
Back when I was a cynical teenager, a friend from a Catholic family introduced me to the concept of Lent. I had no interest in the rules of her religion (and neither did she, although she still wore the title) but I did like the idea of the ritual.
Giving up something for 40 days NOT because I was being told to or coerced into it, but because I WANTED TO as part of a spiritual quest and out of respect and honor for something that was bigger than anything I knew....Yep, I wanted in. (.....)
Who is Zesty Mom?
I'm an Artist, Writer, Funschooling Facilitator, Empowered Living Advocate, Wanna-be Organic Gardening Foodie, Travel Loving Life Explorer, Former Goat Herding Chicken Lady, and Full Time Mamacita Extraordinaire to a Couple of Cage Free Kids.
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