I'm coming up on the anniversary of the day I quit practicing law. December 18th. I had so many hopes and feelings wrapped up in that decision and it has been life changing. But sometimes I forget that life is still messy and hard and it's OK to feel overwhelmed. I've struggled with thinking that I don't have a right to feel completely and totally overwhelmed because, well, I'm not a lawyer anymore. I don't have a high pressure, stressful job. So I should be fine.
But then I remember: I have three children, two of which are still extremely needy and little and who still wake up more nights than not. One who is in a naked phase right now (including undressed during naptime...including her diaper.) All 3 kids need their mama in different ways (although usually all at bedtime when I am so depleted and have to remind myself that those back scratches and books are the things they'll remember. Those are the important things.) Also, I work from home in between nap times, before anyone else is awake in the mornings and everywhere in between. (Mind you, instead of loathing my job I actually love what I do now, but it's still work that takes time, effort and attention.) I am a wife, a housekeeper, a chauffeur and a mom (oh wait, I already said that. But I think it bears repeating. I'm a mom of 3 littles). Occasionally I like to be a friend too. And next week I'll take Bridget back to her urologist for a scan that will determine if the post-op swelling has dissipated or if more tests are necessary. Plus, my kitchen has two huge holes in the wall and floor from a water leak that is costing us our $2000 deductible to repair. And the laundry. Oh the laundry.
I don't say any of that to complain or for anyone to feel sorry for me. These are all very first world problems, if you can even call them problems. But they are my life right now and they pile up causing huge feelings of "too much". Which is only fueled by the nagging voice in my head telling me I should be able to manage it all. I should be doing a better job. I should should should.
Well. I think that voice needs to be silenced. So I sat at the kitchen counter and cried all the tears today. And I actually feel better. Because I do know that I'll get it all done. And I know that life will never run perfectly or smoothly and that if I wait for it to then I'll miss all the beauty along the way.
But this time of year, when the holidays are upon us, we all need to give ourselves grace.
Do the best you can. Say no if that's what is in your heart. Put all the "shoulds" aside and cry when you need to. Love on your babies and your significant other. Laugh when you hang four different shades of white icicle lights on your house and post the video on social media. Invite friends over for dinner even if your house is a disaster. Cut the feet off a pair of footie pajamas and put them on your nudist toddler backwards so she can't escape. And for the love of God, set an alarm on your phone to move the damn elf.