Ahem. Lately.....I've been struggling a bit.
For those of you who know me in real life, you know that January is always a crap month for me. Between the frigid weather and anniversaries of things past, I am pretty much always a complete basket case by the 31st. This year turned out to be no different. A few weeks ago, I found myself having to drag myself through my days kicking and screaming. All I wanted to do was curl up in a ball and hide under a mountain of covers on my bed. Unfortunately (or fortunately??), I am a mother, so it's not just me who wouldn't be eating or bathing if I couldn't rouse myself. I had to get up. I had to shower so that I could attend the meetings at my kids' various schools. I had to spend half an hour in the morning cleaning the kitchen only to have it look like that scene from Jumanji where the monkeys are raiding the fridge by 6pm that same night. I had to wipe up the spilled juice. (and the water and the milk and the never-ending puddles of dog urine), and collect all of the Playdough pieces to make one gross big playdough ball of dog hair and crumbs and whatever else was under my kitchen table at the time, and wash the various towels that had been used as puke catchers for my toddler who likes to shove huge bites of food in her mouth only to regurgitate them back onto my carpet.
THERE WERE SO MANY THINGS I HAD TO DO.
My brain was overloading. I was drowning in my own thoughts. I needed something but I had no idea what. Never in a million years would I have guessed what would ultimately help me claw my way out of the deep hole I was in.
The answer: PEOPLE
I had to literally surround myself with people. This idea was extremely daunting, as one of my personality quirks I deal with on a daily basis is severe social anxiety. Like, bad. However, there was a silver lining - I didn't have to talk to these people, I just needed to listen. So, that's what I've been doing. I've been spending the last week listening to how other people have successfully navigated their own minefield of rabbit holes, and I've been trying to take mental notes. I've sat on the sidelines, head up against the wall, just absorbing their stories. Then afterward, I pump them for information. I have found myself less shy than usual, and am actually able to speak up and ask questions when I want to understand something. I'm not isolating anymore. I'm not letting myself be tunnel-visioned on one single problem. I can't be. I have about a million other problems I need to tend to as well, so it does me no good to pull out my mental magnifying glass and start studying my faults one by one. I would literally drive myself mad (and am already 75% there amiright?!!?).
I am so ready for this winter to be over.
Hug a stranger, y'all!
And above all else, as usual, be kind to those you briefly encounter during your daily travels - you have no idea what personal hell they might be trudging through today.