Mere Intention

be vulnerable

Month: February, 2013

Thankful Feelings

I’m feeling very vulnerable today and it kind-of annoys me.

Yesterday I had the day without kids. I spent time doing things for me and it was wonderful, but today I feel kinda crappy, mostly because I’m getting a cold.

I don’t want to eat anything so I have little energy to do the chores that are staring at me. I didn’t sleep well last night because I’m stuffy, therefore I’m grumpy. I’ve tweaked my diet a little bit this week by cutting out most meat and dairy and adding salads and other raw foods because five years is too long to use the ‘baby weight’ excuse. My kids are off and weird. My hubby is studying for a big test. Oh yeah, and I go back to work on Monday.

In April I was laid off from my job after two and a half years. I knew it was coming for months, so no surprises, but going from full time work to full time at home mom and housekeeper – FAIL. It’s been interesting. Good parts, great parts, really crappy parts. I’ve gotten to be with my daughter for ten months and that has been great.

My idea was to go ahead and be home until this fall when daughter starts school. Both kids will be dropped off at the same time and location and picked up six and a half hours later. Glorious! And in the time that they were in school, I planned to start college. Full time. For who knows what. The What didn’t matter, the Going is what mattered. And I think it still does…but I’m not completely sure.

Have you ever had seasons or moments in life where things just pour over you? In very positive ways, but you really don’t know why or even how to process it all? That was me toward the end of the year. Phone calls and emails and “Hey, you need to meet this person!” hitting me left and right. All of it about jobs. All of it days after my unemployment ended. As I pursued conversations with different people fully expecting half the conversations to end quickly because they want a FULL time person, I was repeatedly surprised by the response of “we can really do what’s best for you”. Really? You want to and are willing to do what’s best for me? Humbling.

So, talk, talk, talk to different people about different kinds of opportunities and of course, one emerges as the winner. Not because it’s the better pay, not because it’s a familiar industry, not because it’s a good commute or that it has decent health benefits and a flexible not-full time schedule. All of this matters, but it’s not why I’m pursuing it. I’m doing it for the main reason of It Feels Right.

It Feels Right.

To me. And to my husband (for a different set of reasons).

I don’t feel right today physically, but I do feel fine about Monday. I don’t know where I’ll be sitting, or how many hours I’ll work that day or if it will be from home or an office a couple of miles away. Doesn’t matter. It will all fall together just fine. And I’m happy and excited about it. And my kids will be taken care of. And my husband and I will get the housework/grocery shopping/meal planning/homework assisting done together.

Even with this cold I’m trying to remain open. Open from my center outward, taking what is there for me to have…and hopefully giving something back in the process.

Oh, the Ash (Wednesday)

Earlier this week I stumbled into the realization that one year ago – Ash Wednesday – I made a commitment to practice something for forty days and I’ve been doing it for three hundred and fifty six. And I am a different person this Ash Wednesday than I was last year.

Last year at this time I found myself staring down eight more weeks of work before the official lay off from my job, I had been struggling pretty severely with the basics of living for at least five months, and generally just wanted to run away and disappear.

Sitting at my desk in the already mostly empty office I simply said to myself on Ash Wednesday 2012, “be intentional.” This has changed everything.

Intentional: slowing down, thinking, acknowledging, then acting…and apparently transforming.

If I were to hang a piece of paper along the wall and begin writing milestones of the last year as a timeline, I’d probably be adding things for a few days. And then more things for a few more days. I’ve started so many things and actually finished a few of them, too. I’m exhausted.

Hormones (beginning/modifying). Relationships (beginning/modifying/ending). Therapy (beginning). Church (re-beginning). Death. Celebrations. Jobs (ending/beginning/modifying). Solitude (pursuing). Communication. Writing. An animal (adding). People living in my house (adding). Reading.

Each of these things have a narrative. All of them have had an effect on other people in my life. This has taken energy, patience, anger, tears, laughter, listening, giving, travel, sleep, silence, caused fractures in my heart and healing at the same time. They have taken me to places I never expected to go, some places I didn’t want to go, all of them places I’m glad I went.

As I sit here tonight, smelling the ashes on my forehead, I know I’m a better version of me today because of two words and a choice to act on them just under a year ago. You never know what the ramifications of words to yourself will lead to – if you can be true to you.

I plan to keep going.