Stress. An everyday occurrence that no one can avoid. Some of us experience very limited stress. Some of us experience a moderate amount ofstress. And then there are some of us whose stress levels should be recognized by The Academy of Medicine. The trick is, however, is find ways for us to handle this stress in appropriate, healthy ways that does not portend to the detriment of those around us. Simply put, physical violence is simply prohibited. #damnthatstoobad.
I have worked in high stress jobs. I’ve worked in hands-on medical care with four physicians underfoot at any given time. I’ve worked in a professional capacity, juggling the schedules, coverage, on call, vacation, sick time, urgent care, conferences, and symposiums for 32 physicians at two facilities. Not to mention overseeing Radiology, Pharmacy, and Phlebotomy, too. Just a little stressful.
Then came motherhood. Of 5. Plus a cousin. Each coming with their own unique set of nuances, personalities, and medical issues that have left me with absolutely nothing left in my tank. Nada. Bone dry. Blowing dust.
So how does one initiate the salvation of what once was their mainstay, their claim to fame, their calling card, the essence of who they were? I can’t answer that question yet but I have taken this issue of mine to task and I resolve to remain undaunted until I am whole again and not a former shell of myself. I know, in my heart, how I landed here. A place where I said I’d never be. But, alas, I’m here. And my first step towards reconciliation is to forgive myself. For doing what I said I’d never do. That I would never lose myself in the process of living my life. But, like an untended flower garden, I gave everything I had to everyone and forgot me. Shame, shame. But that was then. And this is now. I recognize it, I’ve forgiven me because, had I be given the chance to go back, I’d probably do the same thing again. That’s what makes me, me. But now, it’s my turn. My turn to fly and to make the rest, the best.
The first task: simplify. Everything. Clutter makes stress. It’s just that simple. And, over the past year, I’ve made a ton of trips to The Salvation Army to do of donations. And there’s still more to take. It’s a marathon, not a sprint.
Second task: organization. And less clutter makes that easier, too. Again, I’ve been doing this for about a year already and I’m down to one pile of paperwork. Shew. My shredder has threatened to resign and who could blame it? It owes me nothing.
Third task: schedule permanent “me” time. No arguing. No pestering. Just quiet, reflective time. To easter the garden, scrapbook, read a book, or write a book. This is a tough one for me to keep to but I’m determined.
I keep track of my progress. If you have any ideas, I’d love to hear any and all suggestions. After all, none of us can drink from an empty well.
As an addendum, after writing this blog and then going to bed, I woke at 3:30am with my heart racing at such a pace, I was sure I was having a heart attack. Ok, that’s enough of a hint for me. Yes, there is stress that we cannot avoid, that’s a given. But watch me shed the stress that I can and will avoid.
Until next time, friends….
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