Monday, August 29, 2011

The Uncertain Extent

Do you get this advice often?  "Honey, you just have to find some'll happen, you'll get it. Once you find that balance it'll all be good." 

I a certain extent. I agree to the extent that I think it's a great idea and seems really nice, but it never works for me. That's the uncertain extent.

Since we've gotten married, I have been sick, oh, I can't even count the number of times. I'm currently trying to get over another plaugue, which means at the end of each day I am flat out worn out. I have used everything I have. I have dipped so deep in the well I started bringing up...well, you get my drift. There ain't nothin' left, honey!

This constant assault on my immune system has greatly offended my sense of domestication. Hamburger Helper has become my closest companion. A quick "blow" test has begun to suffice before I decide whether or not to expend energy dusting any piece of furniture. And I found my husband watering my patio plants yesterday...for which said plants were very grateful...because they were on the brink of death.

This does not seem like an appropriate balance to me. The balance between me laying on the couch with cough drops, Puff Plus Tissues infused with Vicks and lotion, V8 juice and a generally whiny attitude while my husband warms up a Hot Pocket for dinner is WAY overshadowing the do-it-yourself, motivated, tireless and sometimes creative self I'm used to.

But I got to thinking about it. Of course, we all need balance. Too much of even a good thing can turn ugly real quick. But then it dawned on me: everything in life is constantly changing. How in the world are you supposed to reach that perfect balance that your life "should" be at unless all the factors of this equation we live out every day remain the same at all times? That's never gonna happen! For goodness sake, the Earth itself rotates on a TILT of 23.4 degrees!!! No wonder I'm not "balanced"!

My first reaction to this realization was an ever-so-slight anal-retentive freak-out. Ever-so-slight, I said. I considered creating one of those handy charts where every hour of the day is mapped out, and if followed properly, you'll have time for everything and everyone. BULL-on-ey. I thought perhaps I was doing too much and there's something I need to let go. No, I did most of that a while back. Get up earlier? I'm already getting fewer hours of sleep, no wonder I'm sick!

I've come to the realization that, like it or not, life happens. There will be engagements, and weddings, and honeymoons, and moves, and hospital stays, and family reunions, and holidays, birthdays, illnesses...the list goes one. It's not really about's about focus.

So...I'll choose to focus on the fact that, no matter if my husband is eating a five-course dinner or a warmed-up leftover, I'm still sitting there eating with him. Perhaps the house is not clean to MY standards, but I've been able to spend time with my family instead. Maybe special projects aren't as far along as they should be, but my health is stronger.

Focus, not balance. And then maybe balance will come. It DOES, after all take focus to keep your balance. To a certain extent.

1 comment:

  1. Great post, as usual! Have you read One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp (sp?)? I highly recommend it. The premise is to thank God for everything - the good, the bad, the unbalanced. By giving thanks in all things and for all things, we open ourselves to live a life of grace, trust, and true spiritual joy.

    Before reading this book, I too felt very unbalanced. I kept thinking the next life step would afford that balance, and I kept feeling disappointed and frazzled.

    Since reading the book and applying the thanksgiving principles in my life, a surprising thing has happened: I slowed down. I became so grateful for all I had, and all I was able to do, that I stopped longing for more.

    Like you said in your post, it's not about balance, it's about focus. For me, giving thanks for everything has helped me focus on the things that are important to my Heavenly Father, not the world around me. Kinda like you said in the post, you and hubby may be eating Hamburger Helper, but you have a filling meal, and you are eating together. God doesn't want us to all be Martha Stewart. ;)

    Keep writing, I always love to see what you have to say!!!!

    Beth (Shirley) Lewis