Ending the cycle of attracting drama

“When you are not honoring the present moment by allowing it to be, you are creating drama.” –Eckhart Tolle

For as long as I can remember, I have been surrounded by drama. For a long time, I thought this was normal and just the way life was…until I woke up and took note.  Some people do not live lives of drama.  Some people are peaceful.  And it doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with their families of origin, things beyond their control, their jobs or coworkers, or with luck. It has to do with them.  People who are not surrounded by drama are peaceful people; they don’t let drama or chaos stick to them.  They let things go and move on.

Okay, so what does this mean about my life? Here is my latest breakthrough:

In all of the drama-filled relationships and situations I have had in my life, there is one common denominator: ME.

Unintentionally, I have maintained the pattern of drama in my life by the way I respond to events and people, the way I think, the way I hang on to the past, and as a result, because of what I attract.  I am the drama, people! It is me! I have reacted with emotion without thinking of the consequences. I have felt the need to respond and react to too much.  I have taken too much to heart, cared too much, thought too much, fought too much, said too much, cursed too much, lived too much in the past or in the future, and mostly, neglected the here and now. And let me tell you, it has been exhausting.

Simply being aware of this pattern has already changed many aspects of my life.  Now that I am working on it at a more conscious level, I am looking forward to inviting even more peaceful situations and relationships into my life–and to not be a dramatic component to your life, dear reader.

This post opened my eyes to this topic, and I think I will use it to help guide me in this new and exciting venture. Check it out; maybe it will help you, too.

 

Homeschool vs. public school after 5 days

We are five days into public school after nine years of homeschooling. It has been a huge change, and I think it will be a while before I am fully adjusted.

This is what I love about public school so far:

1. It is free

2. It is a 6-hour break for me to not worry about one child and be able to focus on my other child

3. Mia’s teacher is extremely organized, structured, and creative.  She’s fun and a great role model for Mia.

4. Mia goes outside every day and gets play with other kids her age in fresh air with exercise. Every day.

5. She gets exposed to a variety of topics each day and broadens her horizons.

6. She is learning how to do things more quickly, such as change into snow-gear and pack a backpack at the end of the day.

7. She doesn’t have to fight with a three-year-old for 6 hours a day.

8. It has placed structure and routine into our lives, and I have thrived on it, for the most part.  It has made me more productive and organized, and my meals more intentional and interesting.

What I loved about homeschool:

1. The freedom to make our own schedule or not have one at all.

2.  That Mia could play guitar, sing, draw, read and write for hours each day–in her pajamas and with messy hair.  I also very much love that this is what she did for most of her life before she went to school.

3. Lots of downtime with Mia, lots of time for conversation, and lots of shared experiences that gave us a strong and wonderful bond that I hope, with my whole heart, will last forever.

4. The lack of homework

5. The quickness and ease of learning something new, without having to wait around or follow procedures to do so.

6. The lack of negative peer influence/ constant presence of positive influence

7. The extra sleep for everyone

8. The space to act on inspiration and learn/do anything that pleases us

9. The ability/space for Mia to learn at her level and at her pace

10. The opportunity for natural learning/ learning from true life events not created in a classroom (such as planning, shopping, and making a meal for dinner).

11.  That without ever having a spelling test prior to this week, Mia was able to develop the ability to spell years beyond her grade level, all on her own, simply by reading, writing, and developing in a natural way.

As of today, my conclusion is that homeschooling is awesome–and public school is awesome.  They each have their own great qualities, and one can’t replicate the other.  A little is lost and a little is won. They are two very different options, and I think I am pretty lucky that I’ve had the opportunity to experience both.

I do think we will go back to homeschooling someday, perhaps years down the road.  But for now, and except for the homework, I love having my kid in school.

Update on Unanswered Questions

 

I asked, waited, and listened, and these are the answers that have come up thus far:

Send Anna to preschool, and if so, where? Maybe not.  I just love spending time with her so much now that Mia is in school.  I think I want to keep her!

Send Mia to school and where? Mission accomplished!

Build my home health care business? (scares me to death) No.  Keep it simple.  What I have is perfect for right now.

Eat a low-glycemic diet to get my skin and weight back on track? (the answer is “yes”) YES.  And don’t forget sleep, exercise and water, too.

Start grad school? YES! In October 2013!

Study for LPC, MSW, LPCC or LMFT licensure? Dual licensure for LPCC and LMFT.

Or maybe not go to grad school at all, and just live and enjoy my present life? BOTH! They are a part of the same package. 

Rent out our house and move into a Linden Hills apartment, so Mia can go to a fantastic school and we can save money? Absolutely not.  Where did that idea come from, anyway?!

Get braces? Undecided.

A happy, happy day

For nine years’ of days and nights, I have had Mia under my wing.  She’s been my shadow for all of her life, my little companion, my teacher. Today, I let her go. She started school today.

I did all of my crying, grieving and letting go prior to today, and I woke up happy and at peace.  Mia was super excited and looked so cute wearing her new backpack, brown Converse shoes, and Peanuts t-shirt. I drove away from her school with calmness and peace, certain that we were on the right path.

Anna and I spent the day together, just the two of us.  We went to Silverwood Park and had a picnic lunch inside and did a little exploring outside.  She collected leaves and tried to match them up to pictures in her field guide of trees and leaves.  We shared a hot chai and looked at artwork in the gallery.  There was scribbling and “writing” and playing with my credit cards. And we did this all at Anna’s 3-year-old pace: quiet, gentle, slow.

I feel as if I am getting to know her for the first time today. It is both wonderful and painful.  I have missed so much, let so much pass me by.  Suddenly I am fully present; I am not overwhelmed.  I am not looking for an escape.  Under these conditions, my children are their best selves.  And so am I.

Oh yes, now I remember. This is what I love.

nine years

Nine years ago tonight, I sat in a hospital bed, wearing a gown and an ultrasound device strapped to my engorged belly, attended by a crabby nurse who ordered me to poop on the bed. Regardless, I was ready, calm, and happy.  I tolerated a Pitocin-induced labor for a few hours before the epidural relief entered my spinal column, whereupon I rested, waited, and watched Alan sleep.

For the record, this kind of experience today would not leave me happy and satisfied, but nine years ago, it did.

Nine years ago tonight, I was about to become a mother for the first time.  I was about to experience the most profound shift of my life so far.  I would embark on a journey more rewarding, more challenging, and more beautiful than I had ever imagined.

Every year on this night I relive the night of Mia’s birth, and perhaps each year it comes with a little more longing and a little more pain than the year before.  Because each year, that night is more distant, less of my own, less within reach.  And so is she.

She is growing up.  She is becoming her own sweet, caring, bright, creative, delightful self.  But then again, this is who she has always been.  She is a gift to me and to the world.  I am grateful and honored to be her mother.

Happy birthday, Mia.

should I or shouldn’t I?

This year I hope to resolve some questions I have been pondering for a while.

Should I or shouldn’t I:

Send Anna to preschool, and if so, where?

Send Mia to school and where?

Build my home health care business? (scares me to death)

Eat a low-glycemic diet to get my skin and weight back on track? (the answer is “yes”)

Start grad school?

Study for LPC, MSW, LPCC or LMFT licensure?

Or maybe not go to grad school at all, and just live and enjoy my present life?

Rent out our house and move into a Linden Hills apartment, so Mia can go to a fantastic school and we can save money?

Get braces?

Things I know I want to do:

Start a regular exercise program

Clean the basement, again

Organize and file all of our papers that are all over the house

Clean out and organize the office space

Have more fun

Get my photo albums up to date

Go camping a lot

Focus on things that matter to me

Save money and curb the thrift-store expenses

Be grateful for the gifts in my life, even when they might be muddled by difficulties.