Thoughts and struggle concerning time

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You may have noticed that I’m still not very active on my blog these days. Honestly, I can’t blame my arm anymore. Although there is still some healing to do, it’s feeling much better and I’ve recovered a wide range of movement I had struggled with the last few months.

No.

If I was to blame something (although, I’m never big on blaming), I would have to point the finger at time : fleeting, escaping, running away with it time.

Ever since I became a stay-at-home mom, I’ve been trying to find the right balance in my life : Between kids and home, cleaning and playing, me time and family time, outdoor and indoor… The process of introspection I’ve been on about my schedule has been constant, if not a bit overwhelming at times. How to best spend my time, how to best use my time, how to insure I’m giving all the different parts of my life the appropriate amount of time and most importantly, what am I DOING with my time that I feel I have so little of it?

I think that last question rings the closest right now because of this nagging feeling I have that I’m always over scheduled and running. You know that feeling you have that you are forgetting something? That is me 23 hours out of 24 and I never thought I would feel this way after stopping working.

I’ve recently come to understand that a lot of the pain in my elbow, arm and shoulder, although truly physical, may have an emotional catalyst. Yes, I’m actually putting this out there for the world to see : I think part of my pain is in my head!

This past Sunday, my husband and I were blessed to get together with a group of Tao practitioners like ourselves and participate in a day of learning about Chinese energetics in Traditional Chinese Medecine (TCM). We learned all about the 5 elements and how they are associated with everything in our lives from seasons to food to major organs in our bodies. But what especially rang true was the negative emotions associated with these elements and how they affect us physically. I wouldn’t feel knowledgeable enough to give the information here, but lets just say I saw a lot of links between the way I’ve been feeling and parts of my body that have been feeling less than “up to par”. And at the base of it all, stress was a major factor.

So how do I solve this? How do I take better care of myself while addressing the REAL problem (my level of stress) instead of the symptom of the problem (the pain in my arm)? Quite frankly, I’m not sure. Little things I guess :

  • Learning to say NO. That is a HUGE one for me. I love to make people happy. I mean, who doesn’t right? But along with loving to make people happy, I have a sometimes unhealthy attachment to my fear of making people unhappy. And if that wasn’t enough, when I do muster up the courage to say “no”, I usually end up feeling guilty about it, which negates the whole effort anyway. So this, evidently, is a huge one for me.
  • Start creating more. That is a given. I need to not only carve out time for creation, but not feel like it should be last on my list all the time. Everything always ends up coming first, that comes with being a mom and I’m sure many of you can relate. But I need to stop brushing it off as “non important”.
  • Continuing with our decluttering efforts. As I feel winter approaching and the indoors calling us in, I’m starting to feel claustrophobic again. We’ve made very huge progress in our home organization, but with us starting to board up windows and fully shutting closed doors, I feel the urge to clean and organize all the time. This means we still have too much stuff. We have become stagnant again. It seems no matter what we donate or get rid of, there is still too much. The more I feel the need to clean, the less I feel like I’m using my time properly. Vicious circle right? So the way I see it, the less we have, the less we have to clean, the less I’ll feel like I’m wasting time.
  • Getting back in shape. I’m tired of feeling tired. Something needs to change. It’s easy to feel like you are getting exercise when you are running after a little 2 legged tornado all day long. But that is NOT exercising and I need to stop relying on it to keep me healthy.

Okay, now that I’ve actually said these things out loud, they don’t seem so small. But I think they need to happen. So I’m starting today. Baby steps right? A drawer here, a sit-up there, a quilt square and a plan-free week-end is in the air. Didn’t mean to rhyme. LOL! Wish me luck and thanks for listening. xo

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About Yanic A.

Hello to all of you and thank you for stopping by! My name is Yanic. I'm a wife to a wonderful husband, a mother of 2 beautifully complex and unique children and a lover of all things inspiring. Having started a personal journey of self discovery when I found out I was pregnant with my daughter 4 years ago, I've since embraced a daily life of simpler pleasures and gratitude. As we get to know each other, you will know me as a quilter, a gardener, a Tao cultivator, a vegetarian foodie, a true believer in a healthy family life as being the secret to my happiness and hopefully as time goes on, a friend... I will try to share with you my days as they unfold, speaking of my happy successes without censoring my challenges, trying to make this blog a true portrait of the ever-changing path that I have chosen for myself. I'm hoping to find in these pages others to share with and learn from, bringing to light the absolute connection in all things and people, showing this world as being a true community.
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22 Responses to Thoughts and struggle concerning time

  1. I can easily relate to what you write, I guess it’s a pretty common mama thing to try and do a thousand things, not giving enough time to oneself etc. I’ve been on the same path for a few years now; learning how to prioritize more and be more present in the moment, instead of feeling guilty for the ten things that are still on my list. But also, recognizing that I need an deserve some me-time and that no one will think it’s normal if I, in the first place, don’t aknowledge it and aren’t ready to make it one of my priorities. Your arm, forcing you to sit back, have some me-time, ask for more help, may well be pointing you to…just do so…
    I can only say cheers to you, you’re not alone! 😉

    Like

    • Yanic A. says:

      Thank you so much for taking the time and sharing. It really is a parent thing. And I don’t even think it,s just mothers. I look at my husband still trying to balance it all WITH a 40 hour a week (sometimes more) career and it gets to be so much to take in. Sometimes your body knows what your mind does not. It’s important to listen to it when it speaks.

      Like

  2. Lisa says:

    I totally get it. I work 8:30-5 Monday through Friday. My husband works most nights, so all child care in the evening is on me. I try to make a list of things to do once I’m home and see how many I get done. Yesterday I ended up staying a little late and picked up my kid at 5:40. We had to stop at the store to get milk, so didn’t get home until about 6:20. Let the dogs out. Made mashed potatoes to go with the roast in the crock pot. Fed the dogs. Fed us. Folded a load of laundry. Put away a load of laundry. Cleaned up dinner, loaded and started the dishwasher. Went through the spelling words with my son. Read to him. Straightened up the living room on my way up to bed. That’s it.

    It has definitely helped to get rid of stuff. That way, I’m not constantly moving stuff around. We still have too much, but we’re getting there. I’m trying to instill an Only Handle It Once mentality. Once you pick something up, you should be putting it away. Do NOT set it down somewhere to be dealt with later.

    My mini goal-keep the dining room table clear of junk. Seriously, how hard should that be?

    And I love when my husband walks right past the coat tree (that he insisted we get) and puts his coat on a dining room chair. Or better yet, upstairs on the bed. And when I say love, I mean the opposite. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yanic A. says:

      I love the “Only handle it once” rule! I just emailed my hubby about it. Will implement immediately.

      An you would be surprise at how NOT easy keeping the dinning room table clear is for us either. It,s right there, the moment you come in, one of the first open surfaces. It just collects everything. Takes more time clearing it than setting it most nights. Horrible.

      Thank you for sharing your story. I admire you cause I can’t even imagine homework and working full time!

      Like

      • Lisa says:

        I have a friend who’s in a similar situation, but both she and her husband are hoarders and they’re SO scattered. The ‘stuff noise’ in their house is deafening. There’s a part of her that wants to clear things out, but she’s just not ready yet. She moved from Texas to Michigan to get married. She had all her stuff in storage for YEARS. (Non-hoarder) logic would suggest that if you haven’t missed it this long, let it go. Nope. I’ve offered to help, but, like I said, she’s just not ready yet. She also has trouble saying no. I don’t have that problem.

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      • Yanic A. says:

        That at least is something I can happily say we don’t suffer with. We have TONS of space for storage in our home, we just don’t use it. The stuff that bothers me is the stuff that is out and we use : It is unorganized and just everywhere. I know most would come into our home and think I’m complaining for nothing cause my house is really NOT that bad, but for me it is. You know?

        And yes, until people are ready, there is really nothing you can do.

        Like

  3. mountaingmom says:

    Sometimes we need to realize what is important to us and move on with it. Your posts are enjoyed when there and their absence understood when they are missing. Continue to take care of yourself and your family, physically and emotionally.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yanic A. says:

      Thank you. I hope my post didn’t come off like I’m depressed, cause I really am not. I just had this silly idea that once I would stop working, I’d have more time. Crash and burn on that one. LOL!

      Thank you for your continued friendship and your always helpful insight. xo

      Like

  4. Great thoughts. I have also started decluttering, but I never thought of it as a winter nesting-in process. It seems right, though. If we are inside more during the winter months, we want to feel comfortable there. Best of luck in your cleaning, exercising, and healing efforts.

    Like

    • Yanic A. says:

      Thank you, good luck to you as well! Such a hard balance : What we have, what we think we need and what we really need! Oh, and lets not forget what we MIGHT need… Ugh… Our brains have not been program to skim, they have been programmed to accumulate.

      Like

  5. Just offering warm hugs, no advice. You already know what to do. ❤

    Like

  6. sally says:

    That is such a good list for me too – 2nd and last on the list are my real key ones and they’re the ones I focus on most, but especially number 3 ought to get a bit more attention and I’m sure it would make my life much easier. Good luck with moving towards them, I’m sure baby steps will start making a difference quickly and will start to snowball too.

    Like

    • Yanic A. says:

      I was pretty sure my list would resonate with a few. They are all common things for parents. But I think the big thing with me was that I use to blame working full time for my lack of time. Now, it is the realization I only have myself to blame. My husband read my post and was worried. I told him not to be, This is good. My post was meant to motivate me, not to make anyone feel bad for me, you know? Since this morning, I’ve actually made a few strides towards touching a few things on my list already. It felt good. I wish you luck with the points you mentioned. Not easy…

      Like

  7. I think until you step into being a stay at home mom, it is hard to understand how little time you really have 🙂

    It is usually during times of stress that our bodies fail us, and a light bulb goes off that we just can’t do it anymore, and things have to change. For some it takes longer, I am glad you are noticing it early. I am a born people pleaser, it has only been in the last 3 or 4 years, and I would say more so since turning 40 that I really looked in the mirror and said I have to make myself happy first, and that will mean saying no, doing what pleases me, and living life on my terms. And looking back all the worry about what people would say, how they would feel, etc was for no reason at all. What I discovered is that the people who really cared about me and my happiness are still in my life, and those that didn’t are gone. I was sad to see them go, but in the end it was for the best, I realize now they were not true friends.

    I firmly believe we have to carve out our own lives, on our own terms, and do what makes us happy. It will not always be the popular, or normal path, but if you are happy, and your family is happy, ultimately that is all the matters.

    Good luck to you as you begin those baby steps. I know from experience the snowball effect of it. Have fun! xo

    Like

    • Yanic A. says:

      You (and so many other amazing people here) are truly inspiring to me. I know my fear of judgment is an attachment. I really shouldn’t worry about others if I know what I’m doing is right for my life now. I guess I just need some time to “deprogram” my brain. We are conditioned from such an early age to believe that a life well lived is a busy one. Even if I now know that is not true, I still have to fight the reflex.

      Thank you so much for sharing. Wishing you a wonderful night. xo

      Like

  8. alexa says:

    Ummm… everything on your list is on mine too. In the exact same order. Wow. Hello, kindred spirit! I’ve been feeling a little burnt out myself too these days – and lethargic. 😦 I think I need to take a page from your book, Yanic and take stock of where I am right now.

    Like

    • Yanic A. says:

      I’m sorry you have been going through similar woes… I’m not one for wishing others to feel the way I feel, but yes, kindred spirits indeed!

      Lethargic is a wonderful way of putting it. For me, it’s been paralyzing force of “there is so much to do, I’ll just sit here”… Need to break myself free of that. Came home from a lesson with some of my Tao kin and found my hubby had reorganized the kitchen drawers for me and cleared out the mail and paper clutter off the counter and the table. I find solace in the fact that I am not alone. My book is for all to share, steal every page if it can help and thank you so much for sharing! xox

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  9. You have a solid plan and that is HUGE! You can do this! I too have weird pains when I am stressed (I can even convince myself that I am dying if I get stressed enough). Having the space to create and really taking the time to do so has been amazing for me. I make myself, each and every day, do one creative thing, even if it is tiny. It has been so great for my mind and spirit! Good luck! Good thoughts are pouring your way!

    Like

    • Yanic A. says:

      I really would love to get to that point. I try to at least knit a few rows on a project or sew a few pieces together, but I always end up in a cycle of must-do-this-first… and this becomes these… I’m working on it. Winter should help. The outdoor work is almost over, we only have a few beds producing still and there is really very little maintenance at this point. Soon it will be seed catalogs, seed starting and sprouting fresh indoor greens for an added boost during those colder months. The “more time to myself ” thing should happen more naturally. Won’t lie, can’t wait! Thank you for sharing and the encouragement. xo

      Like

  10. kittywilkin says:

    You write as if you’re writing straight out of my head/heart. I can relate to this SO much. Those four goal bullet points should be engraved on my wall. I need to do those things, too, yet time… where does it go? What do I do all day? Do I do enough? I have those thoughts ALL the time. Thank you for writing what I’m thinking, and I hope that you have success in meeting those four goals, little by little. Thank you.

    Like

    • Yanic A. says:

      You are welcome, I’m glad I could be the voice! LOL! I wish you luck in getting those goals met as well and thank you so much for sharing. Sometimes, you just need to know you are not alone for it to be better. 🙂 At least that is how I feel. Support is key. xo

      Liked by 1 person

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