Sunday, December 21, 2014

in progress: manifesto 2015

It's been a few years since I made actual New Years Resolutions. Aren't they always the same anyways? Get healthier (whatever your version and method of this is), spend more time with loved ones, work on personal and career goals and a list of books to read. At least I know for many years I felt like my resolutions were always the same. 

However, I do have desires and goals for 2015--as we all do. There are things I want to change and do differently. But many of these things are a process, part of a journey. There is very little that can be done all at once or a change that can be made instantaneously. Often the curve balls of life derail resolutions, as so they should. Let's say you are a new-ish runner with a lofty racing goal. With proper training and dedication, you could resolve to meet that goal, and successfully accomplish it. But what if you fall ill, have an unexpected surgery or get pregnant? What do you do now about that resolution. 

The word "manifesto" came to me today. Merriam-Webster defines manifesto as " a written statement that describes the policies, goals, and opinions of a person or group." If part of your manifesto for the year is to gain health through fitness, you can adapt your regimen to your restrictions and time needed for recovery in the case of a medical situation. 

What if I developed a manifesto for this next year? 

I do realize that this is a case of semantics. Resolutions and manifesto could be viewed quite similarly. But to me resolutions are this list of things you want to do (or not do) that are often quite specific. A manifesto speaks more to a way of being, to goals that may be broader and not so specific.

It's my blog and I can write a manifesto if I want to. 

I am ready for the turn of the year. I am ready for a new chapter and a new start. I am done with waiting and wondering. I want to look to the future with a new career and a budget that can balance and meet the needs of my family. 

I love this definition of a personal manifest found here:
A personal manifesto is a declaration of your core values and beliefs, what you stand for, and how you intend to live your life. It functions both as a statement of principles and as a call to action.

If a goal isn't tied to personal principles and doesn't also have a call to action attached, then I can almost guarantee it won't be met. 

Maybe there are some things you want to change in 2015. Maybe you are tired of making resolutions and need to write a manifesto for the year that is reflective of your principles and the action you want to take to make sure they reflected in your life. 

Consider a manifesto for this next year. A statement of what is important to you without the specifics of how you will accomplish it--because life happens and things change.

Frame this next year with intentions that reflect who you are and what is important to you.

Friday, December 12, 2014

waiting and running

It's another midnight posting. I'm almost halfway through my shift tonight and oh how I would love to be in my own bed. I'm "sitting" with a patient tonight who needs supervision, the sweetest 2 year old who has spent way too much time in the hospital in her short life. Sometimes I like sitting because I get to read and talk to God and watch TV and surf the internets. But after a while there is nothing new to find on the internets and even TV gets boring and my brain can't process an intellectual book and I resort to cheesy "inspirational romances."

My life these days feels like a lot of waiting, and a lot of running.

First, on the running. Runner's World Magazine "hosts" a holiday run streak---the goal is to run 1 mile every day between Thanksgiving and New Years. I was running with a friend two days after Thanksgiving and she mentioned the streak. And I talked about how difficult it was to run on the days I have to sleep after nightshift. But then she gently challenged me, "Come on, you could do just 1 mile a day. You do have a treadmill." She was right. One mile a day is 10-15 minutes. 4 laps around my block is just over a mile.

So I decided to take the challenge. I have gotten up at 5am and run laps around my block (because I won't run any further from home alone in the dark). I have put on my running clothes after sleeping all day and raced around the neighborhood, often with my 5-year-old setting the pace. Some days I set out to do a mile, and the 5-year-old wants to go "one more time." So we do.

One day it was raining and I didn't plan well and I could have gone out in the rain. But I only have 1 pair of shoes and didn't want to ruin them for the next day. So I did a DVD instead. Yesterday I had a massive migraine and so I didn't run. I had to remind myself that I'm doing this for me, I'm not a slave to the streak.

The crazy thing is, most days I am running 1-2 miles and yet I am getting faster. I ran 4 miles today at a faster pace than I have since nursing school. These short quick runs are agreeing with me I guess, and if that's how I'll find my running feet again, I'm happy. It's hard to imagine just a few years ago I ran an entire marathon. But I will again one day.

It feels very apropos that during this Advent season, I too am waiting in expectation of things to come. I am grateful for the job I have and the open doors it has afforded me. But I am ready to being my R.N. career, get a paycheck that can actually support us and finally replace my broken couch---among many other things in my house that are falling apart. I interview...and I wait. I think I know what God has for me and where he wants me, but I won't count on it. I will wait until it all is revealed.

Hopefully in early January I will be offered an R.N. job, which will begin mid-February. Oh the waiting is so hard. I feel stuck, in the in between, in the middle place. Not there, but not quite here either. The whole interview and waiting process is exhausting and consuming.

I'm not always a patient person, especially with myself. I am not accomplishing things I want to or feeling as productive in my everyday life as I would like. Although today I did "curb dive" and pick up 3 white laminate awful shelves to finally get my kids books out of boxes after a room re-arrange. I need to Pinerest how to fix those things up. But they are serving their purpose. So that was productive today.

Sometimes I feel like I'm lazy, or a procrastinator or just scatterbrained. I may be a little of all that---but the truth is I am in a waiting season and it's causing me to be a bit stuck in other areas of my life. This is a truth I need to accept and give myself grace for.

Plus, raising three school-age children? It's exhausting people! They need conversation and interaction. Supervision of school work and follow through. And they hate taking showers, cleaning up after themselves and are allergic to putting their dirty laundry actually IN the basket. Just how many times do I need to tell them to bring their lunches to the kitchen, hang up their backpacks and FOR THE LOVE put your shoes and dirty socks away! Every day. All day. Or at least that's how it feels.

I am still not sure how I feel about this grown up thing. I am days away from being 37-1/2, which is almost 38 which means I am *this close* to 40. I never imagined my life at 40, so I don't know what to expect. I don't know what grown up me, raising growing children should look like.

I guess I'm just figuring it out as I go. Running and waiting. Embrace the day.