Thursday, March 7, 2013

"Odd Coincidence"

At the end of January I returned to work full time to provide coverage for a co-worker who gave birth to her second child (a beautiful baby boy) and was out on maternity. This has not been without challenges the least of which was taking her full-time position and combining it with my part-time position. I can say with absolute certainty, at least in this case 1 + 1.5 ≠ 1. It's actually closer to 2. It's been doing my best to get meals on the table for dinner, adjusting my schedule to ensure that I can remain committed to my overall physical health, fine tuning my prioritization skills, reminding myself that just because I feel like I'm failing at all areas of my work and home life doesn't mean that I really am, and figuring out kiddo care and which parent is going to be where and at what time for what kiddo.

Did I mention that last night The Munchkin ended up at daycare until 6:15 pm because I was at work, The Other Half was at work and both of us thought the other had taken care of getting her? I don't know what's more amazing, that this is the first time in 6 years of having kiddos with this daycare provider that we've gotten our signals so crossed that we've, for lack of a better word, forgotten our child OR that our daycare provider is so wonderful that by 5:50 pm she hadn't even called us to find out where we were (her normal deadline for pick up time is 5:30). 

Through it all though, I'm learning to make adjustments and sometimes on the fly. It was about a month ago when I had the revelation that there's no law that says one must have meals on the table for ones family on weeknights. Tweaking the schedule I now cook Saturday through Wednesday and by the time the end of the week rolls around and I'm fried (for a girl who spent the last 3 years working Tuesday through Thursday it's a rude shock when I get to Wednesday and I've still got 2 more days to go) we can eat out. If I'm really feeling ambitious and have the time we'll eat out on Sunday and I'll do a crazy day of cooking and get most of my meals prepped and in the fridge or frozen for the week. I've reconnected with my Franklin Planner and once again am a list making fool to keep work items prioritized. I've started making mental note of the things that, even if everything else seems to go wrong in my day, that I've done them right. But perhaps most of all - when my schedule allows and the schedule of The Other Half permits I've been going to the gym before dawn breaks. It means rolling my behind out of bed (quite literally), making the groggy journey to the bathroom to put contacts into protesting eyes, hopping and flailing around the walk-in closet like a fish out of water as I try to force my limbs into gym clothes (the mornings I swim it's a tad easier) and then gathering my belongings to head to get my workout in.
This morning was no exception. My alarm clock started chirping at 4:20 am and I rolled out of bed, stumbled to the bathroom and then got dressed. I accidentally woke The Other Half because I forgot to turn off the light before I opened the door but he probably won't even remember it later today. I drove in silence down to the gym and I was on the treadmill by 5:10.

The Munchkin doing only as she can!
While I'm making peace with the treadmill - we're on speaking terms right now - I usually struggle to make it through the first mile and then spend the remainder giving myself a pep talk in the hopes that I can make it to a total of 3. Not this morning. You see, my dad sent me an email the other day with a subject line of "Odd Coincidence". In semi-retirement he's gone back to his roots of insurance risk assessment and though he didn't know it when he got his assignment, it turns out one of his recent site visits happened to be with a person I went to high school with. Occasionally I'll get a networking request - social and business - where I'll look at the name and have no idea who the person is or vaguely remember who they are. You know - when you get the request and you think you know who the person is but you're not sure so you go check out their profile and see if they have any pictures? If you're lucky the photo jogs a memory but sometimes even then you're left scratching your head so maybe you ask your Other Half or friends if they remember someone by that name.  That wasn't the case with this person. As soon as I read his name I immediately knew who it was and on a gray, dreary day it made me smile. My dad said he seemed like a nice guy and I told him that's exactly the way I remember him as. Just a super nice guy. That was two days ago.

Since then I've been doing a lot of thinking about the small signs the universe and cosmos sends me to remember exactly how special life and the connections we form are and that even in my moments of difficulty I have so much to be grateful for. The Oldest is about to turn 8 and is exactly a foot shorter than me (those of you who have met me know this wasn't going to be too hard for her to accomplish but still) and she's smart and sensitive and inquisitive and just all around a super amazing girl. The Munchkin is soon to be 3 and every day as I watch her in awe as she grows and develops into such a spunky, energetic, spirited little person of her own - especially since there was a time in my life when I was too busy being distracted by my demons to be fully present. The Other Half, who has been light years away from being physically able to do what he was capable of doing 2 years ago before his back injury, continues to improve and now can see there has been a positive progression for him. But there are also people in my life who are struggling as they work through the sudden loss of a loved one, a stage IV cancer diagnosis that is terminal, loss of long term employment or employment uncertainty. I think some and pray some - I hope against hope and try to send out as much positive energy as I can into the world in the hopes that maybe some of it will get to them or, if not to them to someone who needs it just as much if not more. Yet, I remain grateful for though it is difficult, it is still such a gift to be trusted enough that I am permitted to be a part of their journey. And then there's the guy from high school - a smile at a time I needed one, a reminder of someone who is just an all around great person, and the opportunity to reconnect with an old after almost 20 years.

So this morning. After warming up I started to run and I zoned out and before I knew it I was to 3 miles and then 4. I glanced at the clock to see if maybe I could squeeze in one more mile before having to hit the showers but no such luck. Cooled down, stretched, showered, and now here I am - typing furiously because I want to make sure I get all of my thoughts out so I don't forget them because I know someday I'll need a reminder that the universe and the cosmos always sends signs, I just need to be open to seeing them. 

Happy Thursday, all. Make it a GREAT one.


1 comment:

  1. Lots of downloading into this post.
    "The Mum juggle", the "there are worse of than me" thanks, the "wish I was taller" story and the "honey We forgot the kids" story and so much more, well done, thanks for sharing.