The Moment

You know when you’re watching a juggler and they’re just juggling away with their bowling pins, plates, chainsaws or whatever?

Then, as part of their trick, someone from the audience throws in another item for them to add into the cycle. In that moment of time, as that extra thing is flying through the air towards the juggler, the entire audience holds their breath with anticipation. Will the juggler catch it and continue seamlessly juggling to the crowds roaring applause? Or will that one added item be just enough to throw them off their fluidity – instead of applause there’s a gasp as everything crashes spectacularly to the floor.

As a working mom, my life is a lot like a juggler’s act. In the beginning it took me awhile to get into the swing of our routine with our revolving childcare, long days (and nights) at work with little sleep, and the ever challenging needs of our baby.

Once that act was perfected, it seemed imperative to keep adding more – DIY at home, extra projects at work, some new opportunities on my blog, and freelance graphic design jobs. Adding each item to my constant juggle took a moment to get my balance, but it worked pretty seamlessly.

It’s never enough though, is it?

For some reason I can never just be happy with what my life has already brought me… as I stand there juggling everything high overhead with an air of superiority.

So then we added a new dog. And my son decided to add in his own little gift in the form of toddler tantrums.

Right now, I admit that I’m a bit shaken.

Instead of being fluid and seamless, I’m stumbling… unsure if I can get back into my easy rhythm.

The audience is watching… unsure whether to gasp or clap.

And I keep juggling.

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Stress/Pressure/Head Exploding

I’m usually pretty darn good at keeping a bunch of things going at once. You know, like on everyone’s resume where they put “multitasking” as one of their skills? Well, I’m actually really good at multitasking. Yeah, that’s right — I’m just going to come out and say it — I make multitasking my bitch.

I have to with my life of work + husband + kid + blog + life in general. Right?

When I’m in the thick of things, I deal by taking little bite-sized pieces and just get stuff done. I can carry a pretty good amount of stress on my shoulders without really feeling it.

Until someone points it out. {Thanks ASHLEY!}

This month has been hard.
Really hard.

It started with the death of my friend. Then my dog, Potter, was hospitalized and we had to put him to sleep. A friend of my husband unexpectedly lost her 18 year old daughter (who had a child of her own) and we attended her viewing over the weekend. I’ve been extra busy at work because it’s the end of our “yield” season. I’m leaving for a conference next week. Blah Blah Blah. You know, busy stuff that is super stressful.

I was OKAY with everything.

Until I was chatting with my friend about how much I had going on and she stopped me in my tracks by asking, “Is your life always like this?”

And like a magic spell, my stress caught up with me.

I’ve been trying to ignore it. To sweep all those little stress particles under the rug and ignore them until I have a chance to actually take a breath and relax. But when I looked at my calendar and realized that my next chance to relax is at the beginning of August when I go to the beach with my family and Jack (leaving the husband at home to work, poor guy)… I lost it a little.

Okay. A lot.
I suddenly realized that I’m exhausted.

The stomach ache I’ve had for the past three days is probably because my body is trying to get me to slow down. My husband and I have a date planned for this Sunday (THANK YOU to my brother who is really a total life-saver!) and I’m really just trying to focus on that.

I posted on Facebook last night (between work and a work event that lasted until past 9pm) that I was hiding in my truck for 10 minutes to get a little teeny bit of alone time in the hopes that my life will click back into place.

It helped. A little.

Now I need YOUR help – what do you do to decompress when life is hectic and there is no end in sight? Does a few stolen minutes in your car keep you sane? Do you sneak off for a pedicure at lunchtime (which is my plan for today)?

I’d love to hear your best tips!

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