Friday, July 1, 2016

The gift of running.

For mother's day, I received two tickets to attend a concert with a friend.  I was immediately excited - and torn.  Torn?  Yes.  The mom guilt set in.  I was scheduled to have some time with a friend and also cross a big concert off of my to do list.  However, I was scheduled to have my kids on the day of the concert, would miss them terrible, would need to arrange afternoon childcare, arrange transportation to and from kid practice and rehearsals.  And I was going to have to juggle my breast pump schedule and endure the mom guilt of leaving three little ones behind.  Leaving the little ones may seem like a necessity for some.  Yes, we all need time apart.  However, when you only are able to share half of your child's life with them, I find that my mom guilt may be more than some.

After much debate and hesitation, I had a thought a couple of weeks ago.  If I was dreading this concert instead of looking forward to some time away from my family - then it really wasn't the gift that my family had intended.  It wasn't giving me the feeling of joy that they had hoped.  It wasn't making me happy.  It was stressing me out.  And when mom is stressed out, the whole family feels it.  They thought I wanted some time for me - when all I wanted was time with them.  I sat down my family and explained that I would much rather have some time with them.  And that sometime this weekend, that they could gift me an hour of running.  Or better yet, join me for a run.

Saying yes to less.  Saying no to more.  This year, I am really trying to get rid of the things that don't make me happy.  The tasks that I don't look forward to.  The things that stress me out and I "over-think" about.  And most importantly, I try to figure out WHY I don't enjoy it and figure out why or how I can avoid adding that task to my plate again.  Why don't I like coaching a specific class?  Why do I dread a certain volunteer commitment?  Why don't I like connecting with a certain friend?  If it doesn't make a positive impact on my family's day - I don't want it there.

If you are like me, your life is FULL of commitments.  Your days are filled with things that you want to do - and then there are the things that you have to do.  But sometimes you need to realize that everything doesn't need to be there.  You can say no.  Most often, people will understand that.  And they will admire you for it.  Saying no - or telling someone what you want - takes a lot of courage.  I feel blessed that I have finally gotten to that point.

The gift of running.  I haven't even thought twice about missing out on that concert today.  But, I have thoroughly enjoyed a full day with my children - and I'm looking forward to that gifted run.

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