Monday, September 29, 2014

"I'm the hero of this story..."

I remember driving to work when I lived in Tuscaloosa. 10:30 at night and newly married, and the windows down as I drove. Singing along to Regina Spektor, I distinctly remember her words, "No one has it all. No one has it all. No one has it a-ha-all...." and thinking. "That's what she thinks. She doesn't know me; I have it all."

Everything seemed perfect and right in its place to me at that time. I revelled in the simplicity of life and the promise of the future. I lived innocently and easily and didn't have too much to worry about too often.

I got older, wiser, prouder, and bigger and learned and lived a little more. It didn't take long for me to realize that I really didn't have it all. That Regina was right. No one has "it all" if you write it all down on paper. We have a checklist of what a "perfect" life looks like and envy our friends who seem to have tidy little checks in all the appointed spots. But we are all just trudging through our own journey with hills to climb and rivers to cross.

As I've lived more and learned more I like to think I've come a long way since the naivity of that time. Life has taught me many lessons and continues to all throughout every day. Sometimes I feel like I don't remember what a carefree, easy day could be like. I could be vacationing in an exotic locale across the world right now and would still be fretting over my children. 

Lately it has just felt like a battle. A struggle (that I'm loosing) to try to "do it all." I find myself wondering, "how does anyone do it all?!" And I was reminded of my late night drives to work listening to Regina, how I so innocently thought I "had it all." I realize that I am being just as naive if I let myself believe anyone "does it all." We prioritize what we feel is most important and the rest falls by the wayside. I don't do it all. I probably won't have a clean house for more than two hours and finished laundry for the next ten years. I change the sheets out of necessity. I clean the tub when I start to feel guilty putting my kids in it. I really struggle showering. Like, in my dark and harder days I showered once a week.

But there are things I do do. And I can feel good about that. And I'm allowed to be proud of myself for my little victories. Even if the toilets are screaming at me, and I thought I saw a 42-year old me when I walked by the mirror, and there are used diapers strewn about the house, my kids won't remember that. They will remember how they felt at home. They will remember how their mother made them feel loved. They will remember feeling important and special. They will remember reading stories with Mom in their teepee and sitting down to carefully prepared home cooked meals. 

So that's good too. Here's to another Monday and enjoying a bright, imperfect week. (Who wants perfect anyway? That would just be boring.)