Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Are you important?

What is the definition of a person’s importance?  If you’re loved by one or loved by one million – does that make you important?  I mean – the fact is – we are all replaceable.  Even the people we think are most important – aren’t really.

The Pope, the President, rulers of countries and diplomats and celebrities – are all just who they are for a moment – until the next one comes along and slips right into their little slot that they thought was important.  There’s always someone waiting to take your spot when you’re done – and sometimes even when you’re not.
I struggle with “importance”.  I’m an accountant by nature and I’m good at my job but I’m not stupid enough to think there aren’t a bazillion other accountants out there who can do my job too if I was gone one day.  Quite a few of them would probably even do it better.

I don’t help anyone daily.  I don’t make a difference.  When I balance a general ledger, no one’s life suddenly gets better.  If I were to say I was quitting – no one would sit down in my office and beg me to stay…because I’m not that important.  It’s numbers people.  It ain’t rocket science and even if it were – there are plenty of other rocket scientists out there who could fill my place just the same.
I have a creative mind and a giving spirit but there’s no room for that in Accounting.  So what then?  Move on from a full-time job that I love that pays me well and offers me flexibility and a million other things?  Nah.

It’s the same with the 2 part time jobs.  Accounting.  Good money.  My terms, my way.  But do I make a difference or make anyone’s life better?  Nope.  Not even on a good day.
And even if I had every resource in the world and someone told me to go hand pick my dream job – I don’t know what it would be.  I’ve lived too long and become too cynical for those dreams.  As a kid I could have thought of plenty – writer, farmer, artist, therapist, etc etc.  Now the dream job is the job that pays the bills.  The dream job is the one that I love but could easily let go of.

It’s not important – the “what” that I do…and therefore it’s left me feeling unimportant as a human – career-wise.  I never set out to not be important or non-difference-making.  It just so happened that my skills and talents dealt with numbers and not choosing that path seemed like a silly move out of high school.
I don’t regret the path – I just wish I knew in my heart that I changed some lives or helped more or gave more – daily.

There’s always been a part of me that’s wanted to be more and do more but I can never figure out what that “more” is.  I’ve never had the balls to take the risk to find out.  And 99% of the time – these thoughts aren’t on my radar.  99% of the time I’m at peace and content and know full well that my life is indeed what I’ve made it. 
But 1% of the time something happens and it makes me question where I’m at and what I’ve done and haven’t done.  1% of the time I know that I’m not giving everything I can and I’m just letting life pass me by with the daily grind of jobs.  Good, responsible, stable jobs.  The kind I love but not the kind that make my heart soar.
During this 1% time, I have to take a step back.  Re-evaluate who and what I am and decide if I want to be something different.  I have to decide if I’ll have regrets if I do nothing and just keep going.  I have to decide what is enough for me.  What I’ll accept and what I won’t.

So while this inner turmoil feels kind of icky for lack of a better word – it is good.  Years ago I would have let these feelings just depress me and I would have spent my time just trying to rid myself of them.
Now?  I’m older and I can see the feelings have a purpose.  It’s good to re-evaluate your life and what it is or isn’t.  It’s good to feel a little inner angst because it can be the feeling that drives me to make changes. 

I’m trying to sit with the feelings and decide if they are worthy of action or just a passing thought or self- pity party.  I’m trying to decide if at my core I know my importance or if self-importance really even matters.
I think we all want to feel important though realistically we all know our importance isn’t forever and when we’re gone our space will be eventually get filled.  It’s a catch 22 for me – wanting it and knowing it doesn’t really exist.

I just am who I am – doing what I do – and I want that to be enough.  Though I’m not sure it is.
How do you feel important in a sea of people in your career and home and life?  Does your sense of importance come naturally or do you have to work at it?  Does it even cross your mind?

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Moments...either stolen or given.

Life is a shitstorm of crazy most days.  For nearly every single person I know.  Everyone you talk to these days is all like, “I need a vacation.”  “Work is swamped.”  “I can’t remember what my kids look like.”  There’s never enough time in a day is the understatement of the year.

So what’s a girl to do?
Steal moments.  That’s what.

Rambo has 4 jobs.  He’s the definition of busy with a side order of sleep deprivation.  When he works 15 hour shifts for days in a row at the prison and then hops in the semi for another 15 hour day and then goes and helps a friend after that because he’s too damn nice to say no – we miss him – terribly.
So we steal from him and we don't even feel bad about it.  Like last night – after the girls finally came inside from playing and after we ate supper way too late and after we finally sat down way past the girl’s bedtime…I told them they had to go straight to bed in 5 minutes.  And then I saw both of them piled up in Rambo’s lap. 

Yah.  5 minutes my ass.  20 more minutes won’t kill anyone.  Stay where you are because I’m going to pretend that I can’t tell time.
Later it was my bed time and I knew Rambo had to stay up so he could sleep all day in preparation for the night shift so I stole another 10 minutes from him.  I said I was going to bed.  Kissed him goodnight and said, “Tuck me in?”

I went to bed and waited.  I knew he’d be in.  He crawled in beside me, wrapped me in a blanket and squeezed me tight.  For a good 10 minutes we just laid there and talked and laughed – and held on.  It might be all I have for about 3 or 4 days – but it’s enough.  It’s more than some have after all.
Stolen moments keep the world turning for me but you have to be open to them.  Like when my friend out of the blue texted me a simple, “I love you”…I knew it wasn’t simple or random.  I know that right now her heart is breaking and she needs me and she needs to say I love you to someone because right now – she needs to hear it back.  She needs to say “I love you” to someone in the middle of a Tuesday out of the blue without that someone asking why.  She needs to know she’s not alone…even when she feels like she is.  I can’t be with her physically – but we had a moment – and she’s holding on to that.

I can’t always be the Mom that I want to be but I can give moments to my kids that they aren’t expecting….like this week when I texted my teenager and simply said, “I luh you pookie butt.”   When she responded immediately I knew she’d keep that text forever and that I made her day.  5 words, less than 5 seconds.  A moment that lasts a lifetime.
When I put down the laptop Monday night so my 8 year old could wiggle into my lap and laugh with me about stealing my blanket – I gave her a moment.  When I whispered to her that it was bed time and she said back, “Awww – no Mama!”…I didn’t move.  I didn’t make her get up or insist she go to bed.  We both laid there until we fell asleep and I had to shake her awake.  In the morning when she hugged me and said, “I fell asleep on you last night, didn’t I?”….I knew – I had given her a moment.

Even at work this week – I gave someone a moment.  A guy I work with and respect walked past me and we greeted each other as normal except he was wearing an awesome purple dress shirt and tie and I loved it.  Without thinking I said, “Love your shirt.”  The look on his face was priceless.  He literally lit up.  I could tell I surprised him but he was ecstatic.  He just said, “Yah?  Thanks.”…and moved on with a smile plastered on his face.  I made his day….and it didn’t even take planning or money or time.  It just happened.
Every single one of these moments didn’t have to be what they were.  All of them could have overlooked or stopped or not given or received.  I could easily have not given a compliment or made my little girl get up and go to bed or not texted or gone to bed without asking to be tucked in. 

You have to look for, ask for and give moments – or life will swallow you up.  Moments exist all the time, everywhere for everyone.  And they’re important.  They are what makes sharing 7 jobs and kids and lives and families – worth it.  They remind you why you do what you do.
For me – they are the reason that peace exists in my soul when I close my eyes at night.  Because I have moments that become etched memories and they’re mine.  I’ll take them to my grave…and the rest of my life’s journey will stay behind.  Because the moments and memories are all that really matters.  The other stuff is just window dressing as they say.

How about you?  Have you stolen a moment lately?  Given one?  Received one you weren’t expecting?  Did you miss one that was right in front of you? 
Open your eyes…and your heart - because moments are there for the taking and memories are there for the making.  I promise you won’t regret it. 

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Boots and puke. Yup. You read that right.

It’s become fairly obvious that I suck at this blogging thing.  I kinda used to be good at it and then I lost my “zing” for it…or actually I forgot how to write things that people want to read.  I’m still here though.  Still treading away at this blessed thing we call life.  Let’s try to catch up, ok?
My obsession with rain boots has grown.  I now own these mint green beauties. 
I didn’t even realize they had shiny blinged out buttons on the side until I opened the box!  Seriously – every single time I wear these - some random person stops me to say they love them.  That’d be fantastic if I didn’t hate random people speaking to or looking at me but I deal with it.
We’ve begun our garage building process.  The first step is cutting down three HUGE trees that are in the way.  Cutting wood and stacking brush takes me back to my days as a child when it felt like that’s all we ever did.  Except now as an adult – I wore my rainbow polka-dotted rain boots while I did it.  It’s so much more tolerable that way.
Rambo and I have gone on a few Harley rides already.  The first one was a 10 hour ride for charity and I had to be social for the entire 10 hours which is like being tortured by lions who have learned to shoot guns.  We were home by 10pm and at midnight I was yelling for Rambo.
As I sat in the bathroom.  On my knees.  Naked as the day I was born. 
Puking my guts out into the toilet. 
I needed a wet washcloth and I wasn’t moving to get one so I screamed for Rambo and he came running.  What a sight that must have been.  Nakedness, rolls of fat hanging out, and puke.  Yum-o.  Good God people – THAT right there is love. 
He didn’t seem to notice the grossness of the sitch but instead just held my hair and said, “Baby – this was a big first ride of the year for you.  It was too much.”

When I was done I was pissed.  I yelled, “So what?  Why can’t I be normal?  Normal people go out riding all day and don’t end up puking!?”
His reply?  “Because you’re not normal.  You’re special.  MY special.  That’s just how it is.”
I hate him.  I hate the toilet.  I hate puking.  I hate that’s he’s right.  I hate that my head has a great time while my body is in deep turmoil.
Beyond being social, it was a stressful ride that contributed to the midnight fun.  It was the first time that I could feel the wind pull the bike from Rambo’s hold and he’d have to move to right the bike.  The roads were all S curves AND at one point the speeds reached 100mph.  We were in the middle of a pack of 100 stupid ass dumb drinking bikers – and had little choice but to stay within the group.  Needles to say – we left after that debacle.  Bikes are dangerous as hell all on their own and that’s not the way we ride.
However, my body had already paid the price.  Or well – it would.  At midnight.
Other than that – we’ve been preparing for summer.  Getting the deck ready, trampoline up for the kids, weeding and planting and lawn mowing and all that stuff.  I love this time of year for that.  Everything is new and blooming and green. 
The summer is going to be the craziest one we’ve ever had now that Rambo has every other weekend off for the first time in 15 years.  We have camping, family outings, tons of bike rides, concerts and a billion other things planned and I’m excited for it all.
Let’s just hope my body can remain excited too. 
 
That whole puking thing – is seriously for the birds.
How have you been??  Do tell!