Friday, April 9, 2010

(Over) Committed

Yes, that is a gigantic cold sore taking up residence on the lower half of my face. The picture seems to minimize the damage, but it's pretty much half of my lower lip, then down onto the skin about a half-inch. It looks the prettiest when I've slathered on Abreva so that it looks like I just did a really sloppy job of brushing my teeth.

As it would happen, the cold-sore didn't make it's appearance until after all the mortgage stress was resolved, but I think I just needed to sit down and have a little reflective time about my priorities. That time came when I had a baby-sitter for a full day so that I could tackle the albatross that is our loft. Originally designated as an office and crafting space, it's become the loft of shame, where toys go for time-out, goodwill boxes are stored and general chaos ensues. I had been sifting and tossing for about two hours when my friend Alex called to check on the progress.

I was feeling pretty discouraged because I felt like I'd been at it for awhile with no real difference (but after I'd taken out the SEVEN bags of garbage/recycling, it was actually substantially better) and she asked if I was overwhelmed. Overwhelmed just didn't capture how I was feeling. I felt a little discouraged, but I felt like the biggest sensation was that I had no idea when I'd be able to fit in another day of cleaning like this, and I had so many things I wanted to get done, with so little time.

Oh, did I mention I was hosting book club that evening and still had to make the baked goods for it? Because OF COURSE I chose to tackle a major cleaning task when I was slated to have guests that evening. It wasn't until I was mixing the nonfat yogurt into the 'less guilt' Trader Joe's brownies and talking with my sister on the phone that it hit me and I told her 'I am just completely over-committed!' I know this isn't a shocker to most, as a lot of people are over-committed, but I was just tired of missing deadlines and not having time to really enjoy any one task because it was just another to tick off the ever-growing to-do list.

After almost three years of fast and furious, throw-yourself-out-there to make friends and connections quickly, my time in New England is winding down and I feel like I need to allow myself the luxury of withdrawing a little bit to start tying up loose ends. Those hats that I still owe Michele? Yes, they'll get done, but now that it's fully Spring, I can only hope they're still in style next winter. That sweater for my sister's birthday (last month)? Yep, it'll get done, before she gets here for her conference in May. Those transcriptions? checkedy-check. My board positions ended at the first of the month and with each completion, I feel a weight lifting. No new cast-ons...pack that yarn and those needles away!

Coordinating the move has been more work than I remembered it being last time. It's probably because I was working a full time job literally up until we moved so I had far less time to obsess over it. But maybe it's just because it's like having your second child; the first time you were blissfully unaware of how much work an infant would be...I mean, you'd heard it was hard, but until you have that baby who's yowling at midnight, then at 2am, then 4...then 6...but the second? You know already.

Oh, and you can only put one jumbo Yakima Skybox on top of your car, so I now know how important it will be to keep behind only the most essential items. What are essentials? Well, I probably won't insist on bringing our full sized computer and television, enough clothes for a month or toiletries to spare. But that scrub-brush and plastic bucket did actually come in handy (you ever tried to get puke off of a car seat in a gas station parking lot without an outdoor water supply? Ask J, it was really fun!)

Taking on one task or stressor at a time and either eliminating it or putting boundaries on it will be a slow process, but I already feel a huge sense of relief. It's just too bad I had to have herpes spread all over my face to finally wise up!


Crafty Mama said...

We all do it, the overcommitting thing. I usually have one mad-twitching eyelid and a husband sitting me down to explain why I can't fit in three million things in a weekend to get me to admit it. Good for you getting to that part before rolling up in the fetal position, bawling. :) As for the moving and cleaning, just keep telling yourself that it will get done. And it will! A little at a time.

Sally HP said...

Thanks! I know it will get done, I just don't want it to get done at the last minute this time ;)