I am out of sorts. It is 5 am, I am sitting in my office writing in silence except for the gray cat purring loudly and pacing back and forth across the desk. She meows every once in a while for me to pet her. I am out of sorts because I feel that time this week is compacted and there is no time for me to be still, let alone connect with myself.
Tonight I have a meeting for work and will not be home until after 10 pm. 12 to 14 hour days are hard but sometimes I have to do them. I am playing catch up from the going to Tennessee to see my father and stepmother this past weekend, so I have not gone grocery shopping or set up things for my week to run smoothly. We have a wedding this weekend I am not ready for—we have to get the gift, I need a haircut, and I need new panty hose. The to do list goes on, my car needs an oil change and is making a squealing noise when I start it, the laundry needs folding, I need to vacuum, I want to make home cooked meals every night so we stop eating out. My good friend wants me to come over for dinner and I feel bad because I have to reschedule.
Plus I have not had time alone for days. I need to write. I need to sit in meditation. I need to go out and ride my bike and feel the cool air rushing past me. I need to smell the wet earth and ripe leaves getting ready to turn orange and red. I need to sit on my meditation cushion and listen to the rain fall and go back to my breath. I need to hear what my heart is saying.
When I get into these spaces my to do list spins out beyond my reach and before I know it I am buried under layers of anxiety. Everything feels tight, narrow focused and my breathing is shallow at best. I get cranky, snappy and distracted. I don’t like this state at all and it only feeds “not good enough” feelings I know too well. So I tighten my grip, my world gets smaller, the to do’s grow even bigger in my mind. I am on the treadmill of not good enough and it is going faster and faster. I know this is temporary and I also know I have to do something to slow this down so I can get off the treadmill.
First thing, I have to sit and meditate. That alone will help me to give a pause to the rapid thoughts so I can know what is really going on and what I actually need to do. Next, I have to move my body. Nothing will move anxiety and bring me into the present moment more than going for a walk, doing yoga, riding my bike. Next I have to manage my expectations of what I can accomplish and prioritize what is important. My house is going to be messy, I am going to have to reschedule my dinner with my friend, my ideal home cooked meals will have to wait.
And finally, I have to make time to write. It is only by writing that I understand what is happening, how I feel or what I want. Magic happens when I write. Connections are made. Courage is garnered. Not good enough feelings shrink.
Most importantly, I need to remind myself all of this is temporary and will pass. Next week I have the whole week off from my day job and not too many plans—and I plan to keep it that way.