Tuesday, March 24, 2015

defining moments

I believe in defining moments, those points in life where events and decisions - good and bad - bring a person to a crossroads.  I believe that these are the times when true character is built...for better or worse. 

It's cliché.  Cheesy even.  I know this, but I don't think it makes it any less true.  Here's what I think about it:

Defining moments are divided into two categories:  things that happen to you and choices you make.

Things that happen to you are things completely out of your control.  Death, for instance.  And these things don't have to all be bad things either...good things happen all of the time, too.  Like a new sibling (I guarantee you that I had no control in the matter when my parents presented me with a brother and then a sister, but they were good things that happened, and they played a part in defining my character).

The second category is the choices we make.  Choices, of course, are good and bad.  There are the obvious bad ones:  drugs and stealing and lying, etc.  And there are the obvious good ones:  college and marriage and family, etc. 

But categorizing defining moments is just the beginning.  After all, things happen to each and everyone of us every day.  And we make choices every single day.  Not all are deeply impactful.  No, those moments are fewer and farther between.

And its not just about what happens or what choices were made or how impactful it was, it's about what we do with those things once they are sitting in our laps and staring us in the face.  Do we let it beat us down or do we pick ourselves up?  Do we learn from it or do we keep repeating the same things again and again?  What kind of character do we display in these moments and how does it shape our future moments?  

I believe in defining moments.

And lately, I've been thinking about defining moments a lot.  My moments.

I'm in that place right now, at my very own crossroads once again.  I've been sitting on the fence for too long, just waiting for someone else to take action, to force me to fall off on one side or the other.  It's like I'd rather react than take on the responsibility of action.  Action is scary.  It requires making a change.

But I did it.  I got off the fence.  It wasn't graceful, and it's not going down in history as my shiniest moment.  And now I'm standing at another crossroads created by another one of my defining moments.

I believe in defining moments.

And I believe in marriage and family.

I choose my marriage and my family. 


For better or worse.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Remember memes?  Yeah, I don't.  By the time I ever figured out what they heck they were, the were already "so yesterday!"  So...in honor of all the memes I never did, here's one I stole from one of my favorite bloggers!

A – Are you single?
Nope!  Married 8+ years!

B – Birthday?
June 28th.  And I'm officially well into my 30s now...

C – Crush?
Adam Levine...I'm so glad The Voice is back again!

D – Drink you last had?
Water.  In fact, all I have had today is water and coffee.  Actually, that's pretty much all I ever drink...

E – Easiest person to talk to?
Hmmm...tough one.  Depends on what I want to talk about!

F – Favorite song?
Right now...Ed Sheeran's "I See Fire."  Just got off a huge Lord of the Rings/Hobbit kick with my family!

G – Good at?
Reading books.  I really, really like reading books!

H – Hair color?
Dark brown with lots of blond highlights - I have an excellent hair stylist!

I – In love with?
Snuggling with Justin, big squeeze hugs from my boys, kitties, laundry fresh from the dryer, sunshine, long walks, good books, pizza  :-)

J – Jealous of?

K – Known as?
Mom, Mommy, Kass, Kassie, Mrs.

L  – Longest relationship?
Justin and I will have been together 14 years in October!

M – Middle name?
Kaye.  My mom says she always knew she'd name her first daughter Kassandra Kaye.

N – Number?
I don't have a number.  I've never understood the concept of a "favorite number."  Maybe because I never played sports????

O – One wish?
Good health and safety and love for all of my favorite people forever!

P – Person last texted?
Justin.  I had to tell him my back tire had an audible leak so he would offer to take care of it for me tomorrow morning...  :-D

Q – Question always asked?
What's for dinner?  Or...Why do I have to go to bed?!  (This one involves much wailing and carrying on.)

T – Time you woke up?
6:00 a.m.  But normally I try to get up earlier and work out. 

U – Underwear color?
I think they're black and white today...but I don't remember for sure.

V – Violent moment?
I'll go with a recent one:  I got an email informing me that I had to make ANOTHER change to a curriculum I was writing by THAT DAY in order for it to go before the school board.  I wanted to kick the poor, unsuspecting, just trying to be helpful person in the face, because I didn't want to look at that curriculum every again at that point!  (I didn't though.  Instead I made the change, and my curriculum WAS school board approved though - WOOHOO!)

W – Worst fear?
Snakes.  They make me scream and cry like a child.  Oh, and I have a small child who thinks they are SO! COOL!  Lord help me!

X – Ex you never stopped loving?
I never loved any of my exes.  Not like that anyway.  Seriously, they were all perfectly nice guys, I just was never there. 

Y – Your last hug?
Hmmm...I think the last person to give me a hug was Justin this morning.  Seems my oldest is now "too cool" to do hugs at the 2nd grade drop off, and Gavin was so transfixed by the TV at day care this morning that I'm not sure he saw me leave...

Z – Zodiac sign?

Now! If you're still out there and read this much neglected blog, answer one (or more!) of these about yourself in the comments below!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

loosing steam

I am someone who...
  1. ...starts out each school year vowing to keep up on grading...and a month later is two weeks behind.
  2. ...starts a new workout "program" that's supposed to last X number of days...and then looses steam and quits completely.
  3. ...gets really into a six week Bible study with my small group...and then stops doing the homework and going to the meetings around week 3 or 4.
  4. ...is determined to deep clean every corner of the house at the beginning of the summer...but never gets past the kitchen (or which ever room I started in).
  5. ...schedules out every minute of my day with productive and necessary activities...but chucks it out the window to watch Netflix because I've gotten "off schedule" by 10:00 am.
I could go on and on like this.  I'm a starter.  A GREAT starter in fact!  Everything I do, I do all out...at first.  I am, however, not a finisher.  I burn out easily, loose steam.  I rarely make it to the end of any goal I set.


Well, I definitely suffer from a serious case of "perfection-it is."  Meaning, if I'm not doing it perfectly, then I'm not doing it at all.  For instance, I've lost track of how many times I have started some version of the Couch 2 5K program.  I do really well, and then for some reason (sometimes even legitimate reasons!) I miss a day.  And then I get mad at myself and quit all the while promising myself I'll do it right the next time.

I also suffer from burn out.  This is, of course, due to the perfectionist.  See, being a perfectionist means that everything must be done just right.  Doing everything "just right" takes twice as long (or longer) than just doing a great job.  This happens with the majority of studies my small group has done together.  I go all out....not just the extra mile, but the extra mile and then some.  I read the book, I read the lesson, I answer the questions in well thought out, complete sentences.  Then I show up to group and watch the video and do the discussion and get irked off at everyone who hasn't bothered to work as hard as me!  A few weeks into the study, I'm burned out and can't find the energy to do half of what I was doing (you know, the same amount normal people do all along), and...you guessed it!  I quit.  I have so many study guides filled in...except for the last two to three sections.

I always tell myself that I just need to be more disciplined!  And then I turn around and tell myself that I just need to find a better balance.  And then I turn around and tell myself that I could find a better balance if I would just be more disciplined.  And then I get mad at myself, eat ice cream, and take out my frustration on everyone around me. 

It's not pretty.  My husband will testify to this.

This is something that ebbs and flows.  When things are tracking, everything is great for awhile.  And then the descent begins and burn out sets in and I quit.

Right now...I'm loosing steam.
  1. I decided to stop making excuses and get back into the gym...and what happens a week in?  My husband has to be out of town for three days and I have after school meetings on those same days making morning and afternoon workouts impossible.  I already feel the desire to chuck it all.
  2. I gave up soda and fast food for Lent.  It's been going so well...I'm to the point that I don't even really crave it, but then I have a crazy morning and forget to eat breakfast and leave my lunch at home and all I wanted was food!  I found my way around it all, but I'm pretty sure stopping at Casey's for coffee and breakfast is barely one step above fast food.  I practically had myself convinced that I'm going to screw this up anyway, so I might as well chuck it along with the gym.
  3. And that new study we were doing in small group?  Well, I haven't gotten my homework done for this week and just didn't want to go.  It was easy to just loose track of time outside with the boys this afternoon and skip it.  After all, it wasn't done perfectly (or at all in this case) so why bother?
  4. Then there's work.  I'm so tired.  Tired of re-writing curriculum and PD plans and committee meetings and grading.  The one thing I have going for me about work is that I won't quit.  I like my job, and I like my paycheck.  All of this just tends to affect my attitude, and I don't relish becoming a terrible person two months before the end of the year.
So, I feel the crash coming.  That point when I just quit everything and make everyone around me miserable right along with me.  And that's the one positive I have right now, because once upon a time, I couldn't see it coming.  It would just blindside me completely.  I seem to have developed a warning system over the past few years (see, having a good counselor pays!).

Now the question is...what do I do to stop this now? 

I'm still working that part out.....