Posted in 31 Days- Embrace Every Part

Embracing interruptions

Day 4 and 5 (oops and 6)

I require quiet, uninterrupted time to write, actually to accomplish quite of few of my tasks.  It is the way I am built; I prefer a peaceful and tidy environment to do my best work.  I also live on earth, in a family home, in fairly typical household; hubby, kids, dog.  So quiet, tidy, and uninterrupted times aren’t part of my daily reality.  I tend to stay up too late just to accomplish a few extra things just like most moms I know.  Still…

Interruptions are part of life.  EVERY. DAY.  It is easy to get frustrated by interruptions.  In our world, where we are expected to respond to a myriad of communications almost instantaneously it can be difficult to go five minutes without an interruption.  We are cycling faster and faster with no end in sight.  We have gone from a society of phone calls and letters, to facsimiles and pagers, to mobile phones and emails, to texting and face time.  It is “virtually” impossible to get away for any length of time- pun intended.  It is causing a level of weariness our souls weren’t built to handle.  It is causing a deep down exhaustion from an unsustainable pace that begs for a break.  That pace can put any well-meaning human over the edge when faced with even the tiniest interruption.

Last week, I planned to take the day off (= work from home) one day.  I was looking forward to my day; kids in school, husband out for the day, and me at. home. ALONE. Just that thought makes me giddy- all the possibilities and all mine to make without any interruptions, right?  Well, wrong.  Apparently the dog had been thinking the same thing and demanded my attention by multiple interruptions by his poor behavior.  It ended up being ok, but I was once again reminded of my issue with interruptions which I believe is closely tied to expectations.  Even if we don’t think we have high expectations (we are told to lower our expectations and then hope to surprised when they are exceeded, right?) they are there, hiding in the grey matter.

So how do we deal with interruptions?  Can we EMBRACE them?! If so, how?  I believe we can.  If we build enough time into our day and learn to create a mindful system of boundaries, as well as a mental (or written) check list of what really constitutes an interruption.  We can learn to say no to some, or not now, but later.  We can blend expectations with interruptions with guard rails for a beautiful equation.  If we do not book every moment of the day with a jam-packed schedule, we can lean into interruptions-to living in the moment- to being there right at the exact moment your friend needs you.  And you didn’t expect it, plan it, or schedule it, but it did felt good.  You EMBRACED the interruption.

Many interruptions are worthy of our full attention, no matter what we are doing we drop everything to attend to these.  These may be welcomed and may not even be defined as such.  Some of our greatest and most worthwhile accomplishments probably interrupted what we were doing at the moment- the baby on the way, the wonderful news of a family or friend’s engagement, etc.

We can EMBRACE and look forward to interruptions that deepen our relationships with family, draw us closer in community, make us reflect on what is really important.  Who knows, we may just completely change our definition of interruptions, choosing not to include the moments of life that cannot wait until later, that must be lived now, that call us to the present- oh what a gift.  Maybe these are not interruptions after all.

And here we are… Embracing every part.

P.S.  My perfectionist side and I had a battle and the embracing part won!  I was planning to make up the last few days where I was unable to write, it weighed on me heavily.  But now I am moving forward, not as a failure, but with good intentions and grace.  Looking at my “interruptions” in writing as a life lived and played out.  Plans were made, but ultimately I chose to focus on the lives of those who count on me (and not count them as interruptions).  So I may not get an A+ in this challenge, but I am still in the game. xo

Posted in 31 Days- Embrace Every Part

Embracing flight- the emptier nest

Day 3

The nest- the first gathering place, a safe fortress from the world.  An incubator for growth and development in a protected environment.  At one time they are all planted in the bottom of the nest, looking up for the next worm, for direction and guidance.  Next they stand up and peek over the edge, then spread and prepare their own wingspan for a soon to be flight into freedom and responsibility.  Then one flies away and is soaring fairly well- comes back for winter breaks and summer rejuvenation.  All the while, others are clambering to get their turn, dangling over the edge, making your heart stop.  Still some are sprouting before your eyes, slowly moving past things of the youngest, creeping into wavering definitions of self and others while exploring bigger boundaries.  All of this is beautiful and wonderful, part of a master plan.

I have always been amused by the saying that describes parenting as “the longest days and the shortest years” and I can attest: it is true my friends, so true.  I have been blessed with children that are all about 5 years apart in school and age, give or take a few months.  As you can imagine, at any given time, our household has children that are all on different levels of the human development spectrum.  It makes for a wildly diverse emotional landscape at times.  It also makes the mind, heart, and soul expand to see how we grow and interact within our own little village in the home and the world as a whole.  It is fascinating!  Until you get lost in the little, the tiny, the insignificant.  And the crazy thing is, those things that are little, tiny, and insignificant one day, become microscopic as the days move ahead and pages of the calendar turn faster.

At this point in time I have one in college, one in high school, and one in elementary school.  Tomorrow the “baby” will be turning 10- double digits baby!!  It is wonderful- and it is bittersweet.  You see,  I don’t expect an empty nest.  With the oldest and youngest almost 10 years apart, I expect it to be quieter, but never silent.  And time will still tell… But, I am surprised at myself, surprised at how hard it is to have my youngest little reach milestones that leave no more.  You know, the feeling you get when your first, second, and on up reach a milestone- the first smile, giggle, tooth, step, bike ride, lead role, etc.  THAT feeling- it is that feeling except in reverse.  I have no more who are in diapers (yay!) no more in kindy, no more writing in cursive for the first time.  In fact, some of my firsts are no more.  But, I embrace it (and some days mourn it)!

So tomorrow I am going to enjoy the celebration, it may be the last of my single digit aged kiddos, but it won’t be the last birthday celebration. There will be many more to come, maybe leaving some “firsts” behind, but certainly opening up wide the gates for many more “firsts” on the horizon. My nest may be emptier, but my life is growing fuller as I seek to discover the place my heart feels content- enjoying the memories, focusing and living in the present, anticipating tomorrow, all the while embracing every part.

Fully embracing every part.

 

 

Embracing Every Part

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Welcome to 31 days: Embracing Every Part


Scroll down for Day 1:  Click below to read the other days

Day 19: Embracing growth

Day 18: Embracing time (or lack thereof)

Day 17: Embracing the unexpected

Day 12: Embracing Rest

Day 9: Embracing adversity

Day 8: Embracing your dreams

Day 4 and 5 (oops and 6): Embracing interruptions

Day 3: Embracing flight- the emptier nest

Day 2: Embrace [em-breys]

Day 1

Autumn, my favorite time of year.  As the light slows down and the twilight lingers, there is a sense of new beginnings, a switch from the carefree days of summer to the busy start to a new season.  A new season filled with promise and hope of what is to come, what will spring forth in just a few seasons more.  But before that, our season of shedding must proceed. Some of what is old and past it’s prime, approaches the end of its life cycle.

Autumn, the harvest time, time to gather what we have carefully planted and to discard what is no longer needed for growth.  Time for perspective, acceptance of what is past and then, appreciation for the present and anticipation of the future.  Time to embrace it all and embrace all of ourselves in the time and place God has us.

Our lives are made up of many parts, many of them moving and shifting, like long shadows cast in fall afternoon.  As busy women, we sometimes get caught up in focusing on just a few while the others lie dormant, waiting for some attention, some tending. Yes, at times this is part of the plan, all we can handle if you will.

With the next 31 days I want to say hello to the many parts that define our lives, to wake up the sleepy, to acknowledge all that we are… To EMBRACE every part.

So pull up a comfy chair, pour a cup of tea, and please join me as I seek to embrace every part.  Every. Part.

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers” -L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables