Times are a changin’, that is for sure.
Changing so much so that it can be hard to sit and check in with myself on here and sort through the nuance for the themes. Not only is there wild variety in what to write about: the teens, the towels (it has gotten more mental on that front), the *parenting strategy* (I am writing a 2021 Family Handbook) or just the personal effects of retiring from corporate life, where my identity was intertwined for 16 years. But there is wild contradiction in my thoughts.
For example: I planted some garlic a couple of weeks ago. Just the other day, I noticed a little bit of green poking up and I thought to myself “shoot, maybe its too warm” and I was disappointed to see the pokes of green. Moments later, I assessed the bed where I dunked this huge hunk of mint root that had been bound in a yellow pot and wondered “well, why aren’t you poking up?”
I am being very, very kind and patient to myself in all the change; recognizing all of this as a proverbial salad dressing shake up. My life has changed a lot this year and I am just now through what feels to be a final major identity shift. I got married, blended my family, retired from my work. My last name is different. I am officially transmuted, no longer transmuting. Now it is time to see what I became.
I heard from my work best friend today, Keyur. There was a sting of loyalty (pun kind of intended – we worked on our company’s loyalty programs together) that came up. It had been well over a week since we spoke. We were daily sounding boards, sanity checks and life lines. Deciding to leave Enterprise came down to a couple key thoughts and “whether or not I could do that to Keyur” was for sure one of them. When he heard of my plans and expressed sincere support and told me “no way, Erin, you have to go”, it helped. It still was not easy. But it helped.
When Keyur texted to say hey, I was baking some fish and watching my daughter, Ellen’s, basketball game on a streaming service. Ladue played Rosati Kain tonight in their season opener. I absolutely loved it. I am drinking this peanut butter chocolate stout out of a wine glass and am thinking about how I need to be a little thoughtful of my new life wardrobe so that I don’t live in a revolving door of cleaning pants and sweat pants. I had a successful Cyber Monday and have done a little decorating amongst little hints of time to “write write”.
Like, write like I was born to write.
Last week being Thanksgiving week, I was on my feet daily for 8 – 10 hours in the kitchen. It was a great vibe and there were a couple of cameos from kids that wanted to help and be a part of the creation. I was insanely proud of myself for throwing down a complete feast as Queen de la roost. I was proud of my family, for how it was grown. I was humbled at our fortune in life and cried blessing our meal, knowing folks out there may not have been able to go all out this year, not be able to do a turkey.
By Thanksgiving evening, my body was utterly sore. David and I decided on Friday morning I was to do nothing. I propped my legs up with a bolster and got comfortable and found my first opening of space for some of my writing work. I am not entirely comfortable yet sharing the details but I am really, really excited about my creative projects. Getting the house in a good, consistent place (hence a Family Handbook) and learning my new roles and establishing presence in each of my people’s life are all making way for a routine and for opportunity.
I am busy all day and much more relaxed.
Even when there are half a dozen dirty washcloths in the basket with the clean ones and no dirty washcloths in the laundry basket. #drama
Closing thought: what I know to be in true in life is things are rarely final. Even death can be transformative. Behaviors and patterns and cycles can be rewired or broken. Things you think will never change – someday – you will be looking straight at a situation and it will just be different. It will just feel different. Your one next step will be different or something about you will be different that you take the one next step that was there the whole while. So while I am in a season of settling and change, taking stock of everything I hope to see transform as fruit of what I am able to do thanks to my transformation, I know from the course of my life to offer a ton of grace and patience to the mix.
I know to be intentional and honest about my yes and my no. I know when you’re not it causes blips that are distracting from the big picture.
What else do I know… <stream of consciousness here>
Oh, yeah – to put your Amazon orders in before it gets intense. :)
That’s all for now. Hi to all of you. I hope you are all feeling good about your holiday planning.