Running just as fast as I can

Bright blue sky full of hmm, I think altocumulus-cirrostratus clouds. ©careerusinterruptus.com

The past couple of weeks have seen an extended visit from the Executive Function Fairy and miracle of miracles, suddenly I am doing ALL THE THINGS!

I have attended appointments on time and cancelled others *before* they happened; I’ve got the kids to all their activities and kept them emotionally afloat; I’ve returned calls; I’ve paid bills before the due date; I’ve bought things I wanted for the garden AND put them in the ground; I’ve done a bit more keeping kids afloat; I’ve been taking brisk walks with the Skeptic – People, I have had three showers in the past week! THREE!

I think I know what’s done it, too, and I’m sorry to say it’s that simple magic thing you already know: eating better.

See, couple weeks back while medicating chickens, I had to step on the scales. You likely heard the scream. But it isn’t about the number, nor about appearance: It’s about how I FEEL, which for the past century has been tired and unmotivated and tired and a bit depressed and tired and a lot overwhelmed and did I mention the tired? Well, this time, quantifying that proved to be just the right prod to action. Dunno why; don’t care – it’s a gift. Thank you, Executive Function Fairy.

So I’ve made spinach- and sweet potato- laden frittatas to ensure I have healthy, thought- and effort- less breakfasts, I’ve made salads for lunch, and some nights I’ve even made low-carb dinners for me and the Skeptic, who is also feeling his age and his waistline and wondering what the hell happened. We aren’t counting calories or steps or setting any goals other than, “choose veg”.

It might not even be the biochemistry of eating better. It might just be that doing one thing, created enough of a charge to get the ball rolling. Whatever.

It’s working.

It’s terrifying.

I feel like Indy, running for his life ahead of that boulder. I’m doing it! I’m doing it!! HOLY SHIT DON’T STOP!!!

Scene from Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark, via 810WHB.com

Of course, the house still looks like that boulder’s gone through each and every room, the aftermath of the long years when I DID stop, when I simply could not figure out what to do or how to make myself do it in a timely manner. Suddenly both those capacities have switched back on.

Rather wonderfully, it seems to be contagious: The Skeptic, noticing that I’m doing more, has been doling out kudos and butt-kicks gentle reminders, and miraculously, getting off his own butt more, too.

Which is awesome, sure, but UPS THE STAKES.

A few years ago I heard a woman talk about starting her own business while working part-time and raising three kids. She’d talked about it for years, before finally realising that the biggest obstacle was fear. We got that, but what scared her was surprising: it was success. If she pulled it off – quit her job, committed to building it, took the opportunities that arose – everything would change. She’d have to rethink childcare, her housekeeping routines, how she exercised, when she got to spend time with her husband, what she said at parties. Everything. And she didn’t know how that would all look.

That’s what I’m feeling now. Partly, it’s the sheer amount of chaos I’ve got to clean up. Granted, it would be lovely if my back patio wasn’t a vista of old clothes, dead seedlings, and a towering stack of empty boxes topped with an old guitar, but if it was tidy – and if every other room was also an orderly, useable space – what would I do with that? Who would I be? I’ve been a disorganised ditz for so long, now, I can scarcely imagine functioning properly. That’d be the easy out.

The challenge is to keep going, without a map. Because the one thing you can guarantee, with these kids, is that sooner or later the boulder’s gonna catch up and knock us for six for at least a week or maybe a decade. Then that’ll pass, and you can get up and run again. So as long as you can, you’ve just gotta keep putting one foot in front of the other, even if you can’t quite see the light at the end of the tunnel. Sooner or later it will appear. Keep your eye on the mountain, even if it’s just a faint outline in the mist. Keep going. Be ready.

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