Monday, August 8, 2016

Overgrown


Miss Austen and I have our regular routes for walking. The specific route and length of a walk is generally impacted by how late I’m running. One of Miss A’s favorites, due to the high concentration of squirrels, takes us past Chimborazo Elementary School.  A few years ago, landscaping was put in that transformed the grounds into an extremely pretty and inviting space. In fact, I was quite envious. Oh, to have a green thumb. Mine is currently chartreuse. I loved walking by. Lately, though, it looks a little, well, overgrown.

I have no idea who did the initial planting or who kept it up. I’ve never seen any type of professional landscaping service either, so my best guess is that it was done on a volunteer basis. I am in NO WAY writing this to call anyone out. The grounds are still really lovely, but…. I can see a difference. The plants need a little love.

What does this have to do with anything? Well, I was walking by the other day and noticed it, the difference, and I thought to myself that was how I’d been feeling lately, a little overgrown. When big changes happen in your life your brain shifts energy and space where it needs it the most. You go into sort of a survival mode and the places that are integral to survival come first. 

The weeds, that’s when they see an opening. You’re supposed to do something on a Monday and you just don’t get to it. I’ll do it tomorrow, you think. I can carve out time. It’s important; it needs to get done too. But then tomorrow comes and you still don’t get to it. Then you make a new to-do list and it’s even longer than the one you made Monday. The weeds start popping up. Friday comes and there are still those three things staring at you “un-crossed off” on your list. I’ll get them done over the weekend.

By Monday, the weeds have become intertwined with the real plants and you’re so mad at yourself you could spit. Then you just sit and watch the weeds overtake the garden. They spread like a disease. Then, the time and effort it will take to clean them up feels like climbing Everest. What would have taken an hour will now take a day. That overwhelming feeling begins to break over you like a wave. I’ll never get it all done now. Why can’t I juggle all this?!

Because, Kelly, sometimes, you just have to go to sleep. Sometimes, you need to put yourself first. Sometimes, you need to ask why someone else isn’t pulling their weight, and frankly, why can’t they do it? Sometimes, you need to worry less about disappointing someone else and more about how much better you’ll feel if you just clean up the backyard.  This is obviously about more than the backyard, but you already knew that.

Vacation for me came at the perfect time; at least it seemed like the perfect time. A break helps you step away from the everyday just long enough to see what’s staring you right in the face. I have a bad habit of thinking that even though everything is completely changing, somehow everything will stay exactly the same. It doesn’t. 

When I came back from vacation it seemed like a bit of a fresh start. Things in a lot of areas felt better than they had in weeks. I let go of the last eleven years I think. Life won’t be the same, hopefully it will be better. Better in the sense that you grow and you change. You accept your new surroundings and your role in them.  Your brain calms down just long enough for you to look around and finally notice the weeds that have so ruthlessly taken up residence around you. Yuck! Luckily, I look adorable in a pair of Wellies and shears in my hand.

Homeostasis is close, but not completely here yet.…..

Either way, I feel a lot better……

I can’t wait for how I’ll feel in another two months. 

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