Crafting My Life Works!

 

I have talked a lit­tle bit about sign­ing up for the Craft­ing My Life course that Amber Stro­cel is facil­i­tat­ing.  I signed up because I’ve been at home for almost six years.  I had a job that was s0-so before I had my first son.  I don’t want to go back to that job.  For a long time, I was okay with that.  Then, grad­u­al­ly I wasn’t.  For a long time, I won­dered how any­one would want to do any­thing else when they could choose to stay at home.  (I know how that sen­tence sounds.  I real­ly do.)  I couldn’t imag­ine want­i­ng to do some­thing else.  I even imag­ined myself still stay­ing at home once my chil­dren were all in school.  Then, lit­tle by lit­tle, that start­ed to sound less and less like what I want­ed.

First, I real­ized (because of our mis­sion and playsheet in week one of the course) that I want to be real­ly good at some­thing.  I want to feel com­pe­tent and to be good at what I do.  I real­ize I’m a great mom to my kids, but there are very few days when I sit back at the end of the day and feel like I have a good han­dle on what it takes to moth­er com­pe­tent­ly.  Most days I feel lucky that I end the day with three hap­py, healthy, won­der­ful chil­dren.  I feel lucky.  I don’t always feel like I caused or cre­at­ed that out­come.  In fact, some days I feel like I have three hap­py, healthy, won­der­ful chil­dren despite my actions not because of them.  (This doesn’t hap­pen every day, but I think we’ve all felt like that at some point.)

Then, in week three, we talked about role mod­els.  Now, I’m not one of those peo­ple who can say that I have role mod­el, and I want to fol­low direct­ly in his/her foot­steps.  I don’t have any one per­son I look to as “it” when it comes to find­ing a role mod­el.  I have a friend who is an amaz­ing moth­er.  She is calm, respon­sive, kind, gen­tle, lov­ing, and she is a great role mod­el for me when it comes to deal­ing with my own kids.  There is a cou­ple I know who takes time to express their feel­ings for each oth­er and show their appre­ci­a­tion for each oth­er.  I have a friend who is very intro­spec­tive.  She’s very self-search­ing, and she’s also real­ly hon­est about shar­ing what she finds.  I have a friend who start­ed her career in one area, left that job to have chil­dren, and is now in the process of mak­ing a plan to pur­sue a sec­ond career when her chil­dren are a bit old­er.  Real­iz­ing that I admire these peo­ple has also helped me to iden­ti­fy areas where I would like to change my life.  In par­tic­u­lar, I real­ized that I want a career.  When my kids are old­er, I want to iden­ti­fy an area of inter­est, pos­si­bly return to school, and pur­sue a career in that area.

Right now, I have a cou­ple ideas about what area(s) I might be inter­est­ed in when the time comes to pur­sue a new career.  When the time comes, I hope that my ideas are firmed up a bit and pro­vide me with some sort of path.  Until then, I’m enjoy­ing hav­ing these real­iza­tions a lit­tle at a time.

The last thing that I have real­ized is that life isn’t some­thing that hap­pens to me.  It is a choice I make. I know that there are things that hap­pen in our lives that can change our plans in an instant.  I’m not think­ing about that so much right now.  Right now, when I say this, I’m think­ing more about the “I’m bored” feel­ing and how I’m always tired but nev­er get to bed before 11 type sit­u­a­tions.

On a reg­u­lar basis, I say to Kael, “This isn’t some­thing that is hap­pen­ing to you.  It’s some­thing you are choos­ing.”  I need to hear my own words!  Instead of get­ting stuck in a rut or wan­der­ing around look­ing for “it,” I need to start mak­ing some choic­es.  Sure, if I don’t know what “it” is, I may not find it, but I can choose to enjoy the jour­ney!

If you’re feel­ing some­thing like what I described or if you’re feel­ing your own sort of wan­der­ing feel­ings, I high­ly rec­om­mend­ing Craft­ing My Life.  It has been great so far (and we’re only half way through!).  It has giv­en me a rea­son to sit down and think about some of these issues in my life.  It has also giv­en me some tools to take the steps to do it.  I am so excit­ed for the next six weeks!  I can’t wait to see what else I can find out about myself.  🙂

I’m Crafting My Life

 

I’m so excit­ed!  I signed up for Amber’s Craft­ing My Life course.  What does Craft­ing My Life mean?  Here is a basic descrip­tion from her web­site:

Craft­ing my Life is a 12 week online course about liv­ing with inten­tion. Dur­ing the class we fig­ure out what we real­ly want to be when we grow up, and then take steps to make that a real­i­ty. Craft­ing your life is about tak­ing stock, find­ing your bliss, slay­ing your drag­ons, man­ag­ing your mon­ey and learn­ing a lot about your­self. It is also about find­ing sup­port and com­mu­ni­ty in like-mind­ed peo­ple.

This is exact­ly what I’m look­ing for right now.  Liv­ing with inten­tion?  That’s been on my radar for a while.  What we real­ly want to be when we grow up?  Now that’s a blog post and a half, but it also mir­rors the con­ver­sa­tion I had with my book club last night.  Tak­ing stock, slay­ing your drag­ons (i.e. con­fronting neg­a­tiv­i­ty), man­ag­ing mon­ey, and learn­ing a lot about your­self?  All things that I am inter­est­ed in right now.

The first week’s top­ic is “Tak­ing Stock.”  I’m hop­ing to set aside a cou­ple hours a week for this course and real­ly get some good time to eval­u­ate where I am and what I want for my life in the next five years.

About six and a half  years ago, I was inter­view­ing for a class I want­ed to take, and the inter­view­er asked me, “What do you want for your life in 5 years?”  I answered imme­di­ate­ly, “I want to be a mom.”  At the time it nev­er occurred to me that there would be an answer for the time that co-exist­ed with my time as a mom.  That was it.  That was my goal and my des­ti­na­tion.  Now that I’m there, and lov­ing where I’m at, I am look­ing for some­thing that con­tin­ues my jour­ney.

I Am Worth It

I Am Worth It

Pho­to via Red­vers on Flickr

Yes­ter­day I relax­ing after our Christ­mas cel­e­bra­tion, and for some rea­son a co-work­er from many years ago popped into my head.  He was some­one I worked with before Jason and I got mar­ried while I was going to col­lege.  Dur­ing the time I worked with him, I alter­nat­ed between think­ing he was fun­ny and enjoy­ing his com­pa­ny and think­ing he was annoy­ing and count­ing the days until either he or I quit.  We didn’t have much in com­mon, and he had a way of say­ing things that got on my nerves.  We were not close friends by any one’s def­i­n­i­tion.

One day, (I have no idea why) the con­ver­sa­tion turned to whether or not Jason and I were “shack­ing up” before we got mar­ried.  We were not, and I told him that.  He was some­thing near incred­u­lous when I told him that.  He said some­thing like, “Jason is miss­ing out on a lot of fun!”  I remem­ber look­ing at him and say­ing, “He’ll wait.  I’m worth it.”  He didn’t have much to say after that.  Need­less to say, I’m guess­ing the con­ver­sa­tion didn’t go at all as he had expect­ed.*

Jump­ing back to the present, I am now mar­ried to Jason (for 8 1/2 years), and the moth­er of three amaz­ing boys (5 years, 3 years, and 2 months).  I got to think­ing about whether or not I still believe that I’m worth it, not so much about wait­ing for the shack­ing up now but for putting my own needs and some wants at the top of the list.  If I need to sched­ule time away from my hus­band and kids for exer­cis­ing, am I worth it?  Am I worth it if I real­ize that I no longer have any pants that fit and just a few shirts?  If I decide I want to work on get­ting more fruits and veg­gies (which are more expen­sive than some of the oth­er options at the store) into my diet, am I worth it?  Eight and a half years ago, I would have smiled and told you firm­ly that of course I am worth it.  Now, I’ve slipped com­plete­ly into mom/wife-ness, and I will tell you I’m worth it as long as it doesn’t affect my hus­band or chil­dren too much.  Of course I’m worth it, but…  If you’re a par­ent or a spouse, I’m guess­ing that most of you will admit you’ve been in this place at one time or anoth­er.

This isn’t a New Year’s res­o­lu­tion post.  This is more of a post-baby, life is set­tling down in the new house kind of post.  So, as it hap­pens to be New Year’s Eve in less than a week, I guess that this is a fine time to start some new habits, right?  I am going to start post­ing reg­u­lar­ly about my efforts to take care of myself.  In the near future, I see these posts cen­ter­ing around two main areas.  One is my phys­i­cal health.  The oth­er is liv­ing a life of inten­tion.

Tak­ing care of myself phys­i­cal­ly is some­thing I tend to over­look.  I had a (near­ly 10 pound) baby just over two months ago.  Before I got preg­nant with him, I was not at a weight I was very hap­py about.  I haven’t been exer­cis­ing reg­u­lar­ly for a while, and in addi­tion to affect­ing my weight, I think that I get sick more eas­i­ly and more often.  I’m tired of get­ting sick!  To do this, I’m going to be par­tic­i­pat­ing in the #Mama­va­tion Twit­ter cam­paign.  This is a week­ly blog­ging car­ni­val in addi­tion to reg­u­lar inter­ac­tion with oth­er like-mind­ed moms on Twit­ter.

Liv­ing a life of inten­tion is some­thing that’s been on my mind for quite a while.  I’m real­ly excit­ed to be a part of Amber Strocel’s Craft­ingMyLife upcom­ing course.  I’m sure I’ll be talk­ing about it, and I can’t wait for her to solve all my prob­lems and answer all my life direc­tion ques­tions.  🙂  (Just kid­ding.  I’m real­ly only expect­ing her to answer *some* of those ques­tions, not all of them.  Kid­ding again…kind of.)

So, as I move into 2011, I’m look­ing for­ward to the changes that putting myself on the list of pri­or­i­ties will bring.