I felt like I was in a slow burn last week. The previous weekend was overflowing with activity. It started with playing photographer for my best friend’s wedding vow renewal ceremony. After the ceremony, there was the reception/going away party during which I had a way lotta fun! At least that was what I thought on Saturday night. By Sunday, it felt more like I had had too much fun. Translation: Headache!
On Sunday, I slept half the day away and then spent the rest of the day visiting moms (for Mothers’ Day) and my best friend (to share the hundreds of pictures I had taken the previous day). Needless to say, nothing was accomplished as far as domestic duties. The weekly cleaning didn’t get done, no laundry, grocery shopping… nada. Monday and the work week arrived. Outside of work, there were obligations to be met every evening. My day off was spent running from one appointment to the next and running necessary errands. I felt like I was falling hopelessly behind, and if you know me, that feeling is not good for my overall well-being.
The sun hadn’t shone in four damn days. It rained nearly every day and it was cold! I felt more mentally and physically overwhelmed with each passing day. I couldn’t find time to squeeze one more thought into my brain, much less think about making space for my typical stress relievers of choice…a run or some writing.
The family flitted in and out of the house all week-long. We were all on clashing schedules and seemed to simply pass one another on the way in or out the door. Mark was busy spending every minute of free time working on tiling the back splash in the new kitchen, which is still not quite complete. It seems like I am continuously tripping over trim work and crown molding that has yet to be installed. There was tile dust from all the cutting and tools on every inch of available counter space. You know when you just want to scream in frustration but you know you can’t because the thing that’s frustrating you most will eventually lead to something that makes your life easier? Yeah, that was me last week.
I woke up almost every morning last week with a less-than enthusiastic attitude, to put it mildly.
When I wrote my Friday “Life is Good” post, which I typically do on Thursday night and schedule for the next day, I felt like I was trying to talk myself into believing that life was, in fact, good. Most of the time, it works and writing about the good things in life really does fuel a positive spirit. Sometimes, I feel like a big, fat phony. Last week was one of those times.
Friday came and the sun returned, but a couple of things happened at work that had me wound up tight as a drum. I was exhausted by the time 5:00 arrived; really and truly exhausted, but I couldn’t go home and kick back because I had a wedding reception to attend. The reception was for the daughter of a coworker of Mark’s. It was a nice reception and I tried to enjoy it, but I just felt ready to snap. The bride stood up at one point to make a speech about how happy she was and how grateful she felt for the presence of all of the friends and family there. She tearfully spoke of her love of life and her new husband expressed her understandably celebratory mood. At that moment, ironically, as she invited all of the guests to join her in embracing the joy of life, I sat there fighting back tears and trying not to show it. We left not long after dinner and dessert and by the time we got home, I was completely and totally wiped out. Mark asked if I was okay. I gave my typical response to such a question, “Yeah”, and I went to bed at 9:30.
And I slept. I slept solidly and soundly and it was exactly what I needed. I needed to revive myself. I woke up fairly early on Saturday… before 7:00… and I began to address all of those things hanging over my head that I had allowed to drag me down over the past week. I cleaned and I tackled mountains of laundry. I organized and restored order to the house and in the process, began to restore some order to my chaotic state of mind. As much as I often proclaim to despise the constant need for cleaning, organizing and all those other domestic duties, the process is often cathartic for me. With each task I checked off my list (and mind you, I accomplished this stuff while helping Kacey get ready for her prom last night, which, if you weren’t aware, for girls, is an all day affair) I felt my spirits lifting.
Later in the day, Kacey’s boyfriend arrived to take her to the prom. I took bunches of pictures at home, then met them at a friend’s house to take pictures of them with their group of friends. Oh my god, they looked stunning. When they were finally off to the prom, I came home to finally, finally sit down, relax, edit and play with all the prom pictures and catch up (almost) on all my blog reading.
I woke up this morning feeling lighter than I have in a week. I got my butt to the gym and spent some time on the much-missed treadmill. I slowed down to a walk a few times, but always returned to my running pace and finished strong. It felt wonderful! When I left the gym, I walked out into the sunshine and warmth of a beautiful day. I had to stand outside of my car for just a few moments, close my eyes and lift my face to the sun. I needed to stop for a few seconds, take a deep breath and embrace the moment. For as much as I hate weeks like the one I just had, I know I haven’t seen the last of them. I just need to remember not to let them beat me.