There is something about this time of year that makes me feel hopeful. Hopeful that the million degree heat will someday subside and we'll have crisp, cool fall mornings. Hopeful that the trees in my yard will look like a beautiful palette of autumnal shades. Hopeful that Brynna will have a great school year. Hopeful that my normally hectic fall and winter will be filled with joy rather than stress. It's probably what normal people feel on New Year's Eve, when I'm too busy feeling jealous of all the people who have something fun to do on New Year's Eve.
In any case, there have been a few things that have been bothering me lately, and in deference to Ghandi who said, "Be the change you want to see," I thought it was high time I quit thinking and start changing. Or at least trying to change. So, here are the top five things I want to change about myself.
1. Worry - I cannot stress this enough. See what I did there? Huh? Huh? Fine. Anyway, I am shaving years off my life with every ounce of energy I pour into worrying. And I pour quarts and gallons in, so that's a lot. I worry so much about every little thing. Things I can change, things I can't change, things I can't change right now... And then I worry about how much I'm worrying about it. The truth is that I might be a more pleasant person if I weren't laying in bed every night trying to balance the checkbook at 2 a.m. Or carrying on conversation while stressing over whether or not Maren is pulling hair at the babysitter's. A few years ago, I decided to do something about my temper and I developed a mantra and I chanted when I felt the rage coming on. I can't say it solved my problem, but I certainly made headway. I think it's time for a worry mantra.
2. How are you - A few days ago I was in the grocery store and I ran into someone I used to know. It wasn't a big deal, someone from my past I haven't seen in ages, but have generally positive feelings about. I said, "How are you?" and she said, "Fine, thank you," and that was it. It was perfectly polite, but I already had my mouth open to say, "Fine, thanks for asking," to her "and you..." that never came. And it got me thinking, did I do something to make her mad? Ten or so years ago? Does she not really remember me? But then, I noticed that everyone seems to be doing it now. And then I noticed that I was doing it. Not all the time, but when I am in a rush or surprised by running into someone I'm not expecting to see, I tend to "Fine, thanks," and not ask after them. This may seem like a weird thing to be hung up on, but if there is anything that I really, truly am, it's a southern girl. And we are polite, damnit. And hospitable. And it seems to me to be a symptom of a larger issue. It's not so much that we don't ask, as that we don't care.
3. Start training - I've been talking for two years about doing the Susan G. Komen 3-Day Walk and I have decided to do it next summer. In Cleveland. Let me know if you think you'd like to join. I made this decision this past February and I have not even begun to train. It was too cold and then too rainy and then too hot and the fact of the matter is, it doesn't matter anymore. I've got to start walking or I'll spend the second and third day of the 3-Day Walk in traction.
4. Think Positive - I think this really goes back to the worry, but I tend to be a little bit of a negative nelly and I have noticed in the past few weeks that I am passing that on to Brynna. I want her to be wise and not too idealistic, but I don't want her to spend her time waiting for things to fall apart either. It's amazing how having kids makes you see your own bad habits.
5. Focus on goals - I have goals. I have lofty, fancy goals. I have nice, special goals. What I don't have a whole lot of is follow-through. Oh, it'll get done. I have no worries about that. Everything gets done, or it ceases to need to be done. But mostly it gets done. Just probably not when it should. I used to have lists and every week (okay, get ready, because this just goes to show how insane I am) I wrote a list of all my goals, which I kept from week to week to make sure I didn't forget anything. Then I would make my weekly to do lists based on the notion that I would get one step closer to accomplishing each of my goals. I quit doing this because I had a second kid which seemed to make my head explode, then I had memory loss which was super-fun, because then I had to spend all my valuable list-writing time writing things like, "Feed baby," and "Put gas in car." Things I never before had to remind myself of. Now, here I am, over my memory loss, finally putting my without baby identity back together and I am still not list writing. To that end, I don't seem to ever accomplish anything. List Writers Unite, Write, Act!
So, what about you. My changes here aren't lofty or amazing. But they are the goals that I can see right now that I could be, in my present state, be doing something about. So, tell me, Interwebz, what change do you want to see that you are ready and willing to make. Or, are you stymied by the million degree heat and have no desire to change anything other than your shirt and your anti-perspirant. Either way, I'll commiserate.