Thursday, February 9, 2012

Lessons Learned

The past few days have been overwhelming.  I've lacked inspiration on nearly all levels.   On the plus, I've managed to learn a few things!  And isn't that inspiring in itself?  

1.  It is possible to resist the doughnut.    
Sad, but true - one of the few things I have no self control over is a delishous, circular baked good.  But in an effort to get back on the healthier side of life, I embarked on a smarter meal plan this week.  Less sugar. Less junk.  Less bread (for now).  So when my friend Emily came to my classroom munching on a tasty doughnut treat, I was slightly worried I would cave.   But I am proud to say, not only did I not cave, I didn't miss it at all.  Eat that.  

2.  Sometimes saying no is a big YES.  
My cheerleaders work really hard.  And I'm so proud of that.  It's a beast that I created with the help of my co-coach and there are a lot of rewards for it.  Case in point:  my principal announced at a meeting today that I, yes, this girl... "Liz and her cheerleaders have completely turned around the climate of this school."  I wish I was joking.  Awesome though that is, it also can be very, VERY uncomfortable.  There's a lot of pressure that comes along with that level of compliment.  And the pressure I put on myself and my team can be more than helpful sometimes.  This week, we had to pull out of one of our favorite competitions - one that we've been working for and towards for a couple months.  Even though I knew it was the right decision,  it was really tough.  But in the end, pulling out of this competition was perhaps the best decision of the year.  We actually have time to mend, heal and re-re-adjust.  Yes to this.  My shoulders have also relaxed for the first time in months, which is a lovely perk.   

3.  You never know how you appear to others.  
I am my own worst enemy sometimes.  I want so many things and want so badly to be better than I am at so many more... But at the end of the day, maybe things just aren't as bad as they seem.  Turns out (this week, anyway), I'm coming across as a very organized person.  Who knew?  I feel I come across as a giant mess, but I suppose I'm wrong.  Today, anyway.  

4.  Karma comes in many forms.  
To a certain degree, I do believe in karma - the idea that what goes around, comes around.  And as a result, I've spent more time than is altogether necessary trying to find that balance in my life.  A self-imposed checks and balances system, if you will.  When I was in Ukraine, I spent a ton of time alone.  That kind of intense solitude forces you to deal with your shit.  There's no option, there's no distraction.  It can make or break you.  But back in real life, most of us don't have the time or inclination to do that kind of heavy self-work.  Until my mood hit a strange and new low, I hadn't either - not for years.  But this week I took that time.  And as much as the process kind of sucks, I feel like I found the explanation I was looking for.  For the first time in a long time, I feel ready for whatever life has for me.  Which is a pretty big deal, actually.  

5.  Sometimes DIY projects are more work than they're worth.  
I love a craft and have always kind of wanted to be that girl... you know who she is.  She's new fangled, independent, intelligent, and stylish, but also has a heavy dose of 50s homemaker in her - the girl who cooks, cleans, can whip up a dinosaur costume for the school play, a casserole for the church pot luck, and a few dozen cookies for a school bake sale in nothing flat.  I have big dreams and big to do lists, but it doesn't always work out so amazingly.  I'm quite proud of my homemade valentines this year, and I know, know, know, that my hand-stitched baby quilt will turn out crazy good.  But it takes so much longer than I ever plan for.  Since I have no real crafting space, working on my bed or the floor sometimes makes for yucky neck pain.  So for now, those 25 mini-mailboxes sitting in my room waiting for a valentine's day makeover for my upcoming cheer party... well, they can sit.  It's gonna be fine.  

6.  Experience is worth a hundred-million-bazillion blog posts.  
I'm new to this silly blog world.  It's fun and I like it and I hope to continue for quite a while.  But it seems I've joined the party a bit late.  So many of the blogs I read (and love) fall into three groups:  
1.  Ladies of the (very) early twenties persuasion - they're young, their fun, they all have amazing          boyfriends/fiances/husbands/whatever, they have cameras worth more than my car and they rack up sponsors faster than I can teach a 12 year old how to spell onomatopoeia.  
2.  Ladies of the mid to late twenties with 1-3 (always adorable, and often home-schooled) children and uber supportive husbands.  Lots of crafting, baking, traveling, and cutey-patootey pictures of the wee ones and their projects.  
3.  The lovely combination of both - the super young, super fun, super crafty mom of 1-3.  Oft under the age of 25.  
And let's be honest, as a single gal of 30 who spends her days with other people's children at the most awkward and arguably, the worst, moments of their lives... it can be intimidating.  And finding the inspiration to blog as much as I'd like is difficult.   I see what they do and I want it.  I do.  But the fact is, that isn't my life.  And that's ok.  Because as much as many of these women have the life resume I want to call my own someday, I'm pretty sure I have a few things on mine that they wouldn't shy away from either.  I'm quite proud of what I've done, what I've accomplished and how I've spent my days.  So... yeah me!  Who knows, this could be the start of a whole new enclave of bloggers.  Or not.  You know, whatever.  

7.  Pinterest is virtual crack.  
You start with one pin... next thing you know.. you're hooked.   Worse than a facebook game, this is.  Infinitely more engaging.  Really, I don't think this one requires more elaboration than that.

What did you learn this week? 

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