With the end of the year and holiday season approaching at warp speed it also seems like the feelings overwhelmed and underprepared start to get a little out of control. I am sure I am not the only one who feels that way. No matter how hard I try to be prepared and organized and ahead of the game, I am just not.
Normally, I would be all OHMYGAWDOVERWHELMED and wine:thirty all the time.
But my Type-A-ness has mellowed out over the past few months. I don’t know how it happened or why, but it did. And I AM SO GLAD! I still live in a to-do-list and spreadsheet world so that I can attempt to remember all the things (and I still don’t actually remember them all). But I don’t get as bent out of shape if all the things aren’t done by the end of the day. There are some things that can get under my skin (dishes in the sink at night) but overall, I feel much calmer and less stressed.
I have noticed and overheard conversations lately about women being so stressed about everything from the right teacher gift to organization of toys to how do you keep your house clean all the time and find time for extensive (expensive) activities with your family. Look ladies, we can only do so much in one day and we should all remember that whatever you see on social media isn’t real life.
Not too many people are posting pictures of their huge piles of unfolded laundry, cluttered kitchen countertops, dirty bathroom sinks and played-in playrooms on facebook, twitter, instagram, etc. Blue box mac & cheese and ramen noodles are two of my favorite things to eat. Gianna usually ends up eating yogurt or applesauce for dinner every night. I pay attention to what kind of food I buy but not THAT close of attention – I am not paying $10 for organic oranges, I am just not doing it! I wouldn’t know how to cook or what to do with quinoa and I really have no idea how to pronounce it. Bedtime has been chaotic lately – sometimes we get it just right but mostly it’s madness.
People don’t usually post statuses or whatever about the 15 minutes they spent negotiating with their four year old to come out from under the table and eat her dinner. Or about their gourmet mac & cheese out of the box that they made for dinner. I could post all kinds of crazy stuff that goes on every single day that isn’t social-media worthy and I am sure you could too.
It used to make feel very, inadequate I guess, when I would browse my favorite social media sites – we have a very small house, I work and have a long commute, there isn’t time for an advent activity calendar as much as I wish there was, I think it is totally awesome that you might have done a “12 days of christmas” teacher gift extravaganza but I am going with a target gift card, because TARGET! (and I don’t have time, energy, or quite honestly the funds to pull such an admittedly cool gift together!) there is no way I could spend two hours at the gym every day even if I want too and you guys – I am constantly drowning in laundry and dishes and toys.
But I don’t feel inadequate anymore at all – because this is my life. I give myself grace and really, I count it all joy. All of the imperfections are still perfect to me. Whatever I didn’t get done today, will be there tomorrow and whatever went wrong today I get a chance to do over when I wake up. My kids still think I am cool even when I am grumpy or exhausted. I still think my husband is awesome even when he doesn’t wipe off the kitchen counter. I stay up too late every night and wake up late for work every morning – it is what it is (I really should work on this one though…) I am just learning to love life for what it is, not for what I wish it was or wish I had (but I really do wish someone would deep clean the whole house and organize the basement for me).
Social media isn’t always (usually!) real life – because real life isn’t always (usually!) that exciting, but it is always pretty real – good, bad and otherwise. Try hard not to judge yourself against your facebook friends or twitter feed and just do things the way you want (need) and it will all be wonderful.