|Rule #1: Downtime begins with yoga pants.|
I feel a little panicky lately. It's like being a lot panicky, but with a bag of cookies. The feeling comes on, and you can slip one of those bad boys in your mouth to block the screaming sound.
Don't judge. It's a system that works.
I'm juggling, you guys. I'm juggling like I have never juggled before. I'm juggler - a really, really bad one, but with a cute outfit on because you shouldn't take on something if you can't look good doing it. (Exceptions: giving birth, being constipated, and most bacterial infections.)
I have a ridiculous amount of balls in the air: Support the teenager through his graduating year, support the little one who is still behind in French Immersion, support their sister through the biggest change of her life (and ours), and support my husband in his new (and more demanding) role at work.
Homeschool Gutsy, attend a host of medical appointments and support groups, finish high school, volunteer a little at Spawnling's school, shop and cook on a budget, score some work contracts to help with said budget and find time to do them.
Oh, but don't forget to keep writing the stuff you love, work out, spend time with friends, enjoy a hobby or two, hang out a bit on social media, and look totally fabulous. Don't lose yourself, Maven. Don't spend your entire life being everyone else's support. Be amazing for them and be amazingly you.
Do all the things. Clean all the things. Cook all the things. Be all the things.
Holy Hannibal, that's a lot to bite off.
When I look at my sizeable list of responsibilities, I'm not surprised that I'm constantly dropping balls. I'm an epic ball dropper. Actually, it's a wonder I got pregnant three times.
So I maybe kind of snapped yesterday a little bit. Not in a bad way, but in a much needed one. I decided that, for an entire day, I would just say, "fuck it."
Fuck getting dressed.
Fuck checking my phone, which I normally cradle in my arms like a little baby and practically coo at as I carry it from room to room with me. I threw it on my bed and ignored it most of the day.
Fuck being a good parent. Kids, stay in your PJs and eat Fruity Pebbles and watch YouTube videos to your heart's content. I did not insist they play outside and did not insist they eat all their fruits and vegetables. I was too busy not doing anything.
Fuck doing smart people things. I love documentaries, but keeping up with theories about what's beyond the universe or discussions as to whether or not the Amish will ever join the 21st century sounded like too much work. So I binge watched terrible reality TV. Awful stuff. I got wrapped up in other people's drama and I loved every minute of it. All the fights. All the hookups. All of it.
Fuck watching carbs. You know what? I like carbs. And yesterday I ate tons of them. Toast. Chocolate. Chips. A fucking sandwich. And it was delicious and so awesome not to care what I was eating for one whole day.
And you know what? I found myself feeling almost human by the end of the day. It made me realize that I don't unplug and decompress nearly enough. I'm always on. My adrenaline is always going. My mind is always racing. I'm always worried. I'm always a breath away from hyperventilating.
And let's face it; you can't be attractive when you're hyperventilating, people. If anything, I need to get it together in the name of vanity.
It sucks to feel buried under a mountain of obligations. I've been there for months. But in many ways, it's a self-imposed prison. Yes, I have stuff to do. Lots of stuff. I have responsibilities I can't even begin to wrap my head around yet. Helping a child switch genders? I could write a book about it (and, actually, I am.) But my expectations of myself are high, and the worry that I'll let everyone around me down by not performing at my best is completely unfair.
I can't do it all. I can't. No one person could.
Some of the balls are going to drop some of the time. I will be mediocre at best when it comes to certain tasks so I can rock the ones that really matter. Some things will fall off my radar completely so my mind can focus on the crucial things. People will get upset with me sometimes for not returning their phone calls or texts fast enough, or for saying no to an event or twelve. That's life. This perfectionist attitude I've been holding onto only leads to tears - and cookies. So many cookies.
So yes, I had a moment. I was entitled to one and I'm entitled to many more. And I will take them when I need them. There's an abundance of bad reality TV out there.
Why am I making my moment public? Because we all have them, that's why. Moments like these are part of the human experience. They're when we're standing on the precipice and we either veer off in the direction of a day of carbs and PJs or we fall into the burnout abyss. I've fallen in there before and it's not pretty. The humidity does terrible things to my hair.
I want people to know that no matter what your situation is, it's ok to lose your shit sometimes. It's ok to not know what you're doing and be scared about it. It's ok to worry that you're making huge mistakes. It's ok to feel like you're taking on way too much, because you probably are.
And it's ok to throw your hands up and say fuck it. Today, just fuck it all. I declare it slippers and cookies day.
Just not too many cookies. There's such a thing as too many. Trust me and my pancreas; we know.
Today I am going to do what I need to do, a little bit of what I want to do, and absolutely none of the things I tell myself I need to do but don't actually need to do at all. It's time to slow it down a little. The abyss is still only a step or two away.
I'm off to hang up my juggler's outfit and put on some yoga pants. This bitch loves some yoga pants.