To do list: Love my family

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When I’m working on a project, I have a one-track mind. I’m efficient, but oblivious. When it’s multiple projects, turns out I’m a multi-tasker with her priorities out of whack.

We’ve had a pretty wild few weeks.

We moved to Tennessee from Hawaii, our senior dog (my fur baby of almost 12 years) passed away in transit, I’m in my 3rd trimester with baby #2, we found and put in an offer on house, and we kicked off festivities for my sister’s wedding later this year.

Aside from the tragic event of my sweet Mason passing, everything has been exciting and happily endured, but I have a head that just won’t turn off. If I can overthink it, I will, and if you think it’s something I can’t or shouldn’t overthink, I’ll prove you wrong, just give me a minute to overthink how. Amazingly, I miss the little things while using all that brain power.

That thing I missed #1…my husband

My husband has been amazing through all the chaos. He’s stepped up as I’ve slowed down. He’s been doing more than half the share of parenting, packing, cleaning, house management, endless home buying research, calls, forms, etcetera. He even let me fly first class while he sat in coach with Aidan on our flights. Selfishly, my initial thinking was that I deserved the special help and attention because I was doing all the same stuff – while growing a baby.

It took being away from him for a night for me to realize I’d been unfair. I’d been forgetting to love him. I’d been saying I loved him, but I hadn’t really been loving and appreciating him the way I should have been; the way he deserves. The good news is realization was the first and only step to full repair mode. I came home, confessed my mistake, blamed it on the baby siphoning my brain and laid on the compliments, affection and attention.

All was right again in the world until… my toddler pushed and swatted at his baby cousin. We were appalled! We promptly blamed the daycare. Our first instinct was to enact punishment. We told him it was wrong to hit, push, etc., tried time-outs, reinforced sharing and gentle-touch… all to no avail. Our sweet, happy boy was suddenly acting out unpredictably.

That thing I missed #2…my son

It’s easy to miss a child under stress when they can’t verbalize it to you. We’d spent the previous weeks changing locations constantly, going from having a pet to not, leaving the only home he’d ever known, and taking every opportunity to pass our little boy off to friends and family so we could take care of business. Never did we sit down and talk to Aidan about all that was happening, we just toted him along assuming that it would all be over his head and therefore not worth mentioning.

Our little guy had his world rocked, and we put him in time-out. It seriously hurts my heart just to type that.

Thankfully, children are resilient, and I have no memories of anything before the age of 5.

A couple days of talking and explaining (respectfully, as though to an adult), loving him up, making sure he knew we were right there with him, he was safe, loved, and a priority, and we have our happy, sweet, affectionate boy back. He’d been so flexible changing time zones, fighting off a virus, being a trooper in planes and on long car rides, we’d forgotten his needs during what must be a really confusing time for him.

I’m so blessed to have such adaptable, understanding men (big and small) in my life. Sometimes they’re so good at being awesome it goes right over my head. I’ve come to accept and expect it. I get busy and selfish and forget that, without them, there’d be nothing for me to be awesomely busy about.

For all the things I convince myself are important, things that I allow to consume me, the only thing that really matters at the end of each day is who I am to them. It’s the one-track I need to stay on.

 

 

 

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Out with the new

Once upon a time, everything I have was new to me.

  • Everything in my closet was once new and I couldn’t wait to wear it.
  • Our car used to have that new-car smell.
  • My husband was once my new boyfriend.

I still have the same clothes I felt like a new person in when I was in the department store dressing room, the car still runs great, and my husband is as sweet and handsome as ever. The only difference is, now they’re worn and comfortable, instead of fresh and new.

What is it about new stuff that gets us so excited? We’ll enter stores with signs promising antiques and vintage goods, but who wants to shop at a store that sells worn and comfortable merchandise? Doesn’t that mean the goods are used? If I can afford new, why would I buy something used, right?

We’re probably less intrigued by our own used goods because we know the kind of care and abuse they’ve been through. We want to feel fresh and new again, so we seek out people and goods we haven’t potentially screwed up yet.

  • New clothes fit the body we have and the way we feel today. They update our personal packaging – as though we have a brand new marketing campaign.
  • A new car wouldn’t have that dent in the bumper from where you ran into a stationary object.
  • New people don’t know our faults. In fact, they only know what we tell them, and we can tell our stories and jokes for the first time all over again. We get another chance to impress.

We need to start referring to new stuff as what it is. Inexperienced.

No one wants to hire an entry-level (new) employee for a job requiring experience, so why do we like “new” so much? New hasn’t gone through the training process. New jeans are stiff, and new shoes give blisters. The insurance is even higher on new. New takes you all the way back to square one.

Before you spend a fortune on new clothes, a new car, or bestow more attention and affection on new friends, remember that new will also be old one day; and, your old will always be new to someone else.