Friday, October 26, 2012

It's all in the eyes

There are times when I catch a glimpse of these eyes looking back at me from a mirror and it startles me.  You probably don't see it, but since I've been staring back at these eyes for more than three decades, I notice the changes.  Sparkle.  Dull.  Bright.  Bloodshot.  Baggy.  Lively.  Exhausted.  I see it all.

I have so many blessings.  Some days I can choose to look at all of my busyness as managing an overabundance of blessings.  Many days I am much less optimistic.  No matter how I choose to look at it, I am tired.  Not just long-weekend of college all-nighters tired, but something rivaling the first three months after birthing a newborn tired.  The kind of tired that comes from trying to do it all for too long.

But I'm also tired of feeling this way.  My usual reaction to long stretches like this is to try to fix it all at once.  No patience to do it right.  So this time, I am going to systematically attack it. I am not going to try and get sleep, work less, relax more, exercise more, stress less, and spend more time playing, cooking, and reading, all in one day.  Small goals this time.  Once I accomplish one, I will be better equipped to accomplish another.

I'm starting with rest.  As much as I am tempted to move straight to the other more fun fixes, I am being smart enough to realize it just won't work without rest.  So, next week, I am setting a time to try and leave the office no matter what is left undone, and I am setting a time that my body needs to be in bed every night. Neither of those sound like they should be very hard for most people, but since I have not been able to accomplish either for about four months, they may not be very easy for me.

We all have to start somewhere.  I choose Monday.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Little Victories

My mom is staying with us for three weeks.  It is admittedly some work to arrange the house and schedule ahead of time to accommodate a guest for that amount of time, but it is a welcome change.  It is 1:00 on a Friday, the groceries are put away, a loaf of banana bread that I baked is cooling in the kitchen, lunches are eaten, my son is sleeping, and I'm sitting here with music, a cup of tea, and my blog.  Win!

Visits like this one mean that my camera is never far away from my side.  Since our camera is on a slow, sad journey towards the electronics recycling bin, I imagine I am going to be frustrated with many of the images that I take. But I have started saving for a big-girl camera (one that is so cool it has an extra lens), so I know that better picture-taking days are ahead.  In the mean-time, I am excited to tell you that a picture I took several years ago when the camera was still new has been posted by someone other than my family.

The Norwegian Embassy in Washington, D.C. publishes a quarterly magazine with  articles about current events in Norway and in the US.  For the fall issue, they requested "readers to send in photos of places or things in Norway that inspire them."  Since I have spent a lot of time vacationing in Norway with my family, I had a lot of pictures to consider.  I will save you the suspense, I did not actually get published in the magazine, but they did include my picture in an online gallery of reader-submitted photos.  I'm pretty sure that they probably included any photo sent in that was of good enough quality to post online, but I'll take every little victory I can get.  The photos aren't numbered in the gallery, so I've posted it with this blog for you to enjoy, but I would recommend spending a few minutes on the gallery, there are some beautiful images there, and I'm proud to be included among them.