That summer feeling: W.I.S.E. project 2016

In Don Henley’s 1984 classic Boys of Summer, “The summer’s out of reach” and so is the lady in the song that crushed his heart. “Those days are gone forever,” Henley croons. “I should just let them go.” The wistful lyrics gently remind us of the past slipping away, which is what the end of summer is really all about. However; with every ending we are offered a beginning as well and let’s not forget that Don Henley indeed saw a “Deadhead sticker on a Cadillac” which gave us us one of 1980s most iconic song lyrics.

The blazing evening sun hangs in the sky just a little lower than the days before, warm nights awaken to cool mornings and the emerald green of the trees has been dulled by hot days, some of the leaves have already turned to yellow, curling up around the edges. The summer of love will inevitably give way to the fall of responsibility, to sweaters, fuzzy blankets and pumpkin spice lattes. It is a time for long walks, thick socks, big books and new ideas and inspiration. Don’t mourn an ending but rejoice a beginning some would say. The promise of fall is just around the corner.

We always have a plan of what our summer is going to be like and I think no matter what we did it never seems enough. We long for just one more warm night, walk on the beach, hike in the mountains, skinny dip in the lake. It is a feeling of incomplete-ness that leaves us longing for more. Wet bathing suits wrapped in damp towels, dripping ice cream, sandy flips flops and iced coffee step aside for cardigans, hot soup and long pants. The change is inevitable, it happens every year but somehow we find ourselves not quite ready.

Fall is a beautiful time in Canada though. I felt the hint of it in the cool air this weekend as we visited Victoria. Victoria is the capital city of British Columbia, Canada, and is located on the southern tip of Vancouver Island off Canada’s Pacific coast. Victoria has a temperate climate and boasts rugged shorelines and beautiful beaches. Some of the trees have already started their decent into the gold hues of autumn and tourists line up at downtown restaurants and ice cream shops for tasty eats and cool treats, one last taste of summer.

Summer slows down at my work so the shift between seasons is quite significant. Fall means more responsibility, longer hours but less daylight, more to do lists and less quiet time.

I do enjoy seasons. There is something subtle in the intervals between the changing climate that makes you cling to one while at the same time longing for what is to come. For instance I hate shoveling snow but I sure love the way street lights glow against the diamond like powder of a fresh snowfall.

My W.I.S.E. principles for August were willing, idea, strong and evolve. I didn’t focus on these as much as I would previously in the project as I tried to just focus on the good of everyday. I mentioned in an earlier post that I felt like I was focusing so much on the principles that I was losing sight of the present moment, of being mindful and seeking joy in everyday. I do however appreciate looking back on the principles and reflecting on my growth and the areas where I have learned and things I can improve on. The purpose of this project was to be more mindful and find and create a deeper experience of joy in the present moment. Unchaining myself from the shackles of the past and becoming the person I am meant to be. Instead of living in a place of pain or shame I am learning to walk through it, to feel it, to take the lesson and to move on stronger. UN-scarred but possibly with a warrior wound or two.

I visited my husband in Vancouver last week as he is working there and I had not seen him in over 40 days. My second night there we had an argument and it wasn’t awful it was inevitable. I always say that if a couple does not argue someone is getting their own way all the time.

It was one of those times where I feel like I used all of the above principles. I was willing to speak up when I encountered a problem, I had ideas on how to make things better, I was strong enough to say what I wanted and I feel like I have evolved in my fighting style to be less mean and more meaningful. I have never been the type to hold back in an argument but I was the type to hold onto the bad feelings. These are the things I am working on.

My husband has worked away for years and although it has always come with it’s own set of challenges forty days apart has never been the norm for us but it is quickly becoming so. We are at a point in our lives and our relationship that we enjoy each others company, we are not afraid to share our feelings and we genuinely want to share our time. Loneliness has become a very real thing and we are challenged everyday to find the time to stay connected. When my husband worked away in the Oilsands no matter what he told me about the work conditions and living in camps there was an undeniable disconnect between what he relayed to me and what I understood. This year I have been visiting him at his away jobs and I am able to get a sense for the solitary feeling that looms around you when you work and live alone. I want to hold unto him like I want to hold unto that summer feeling and it has had an affect on me to the point that I have to dig very deep everyday to expel the foreboding perception of emptiness that torments me.

For those of you who have spouses that work away I am more than open to ideas on how you nurture your connection during long periods apart. I want to be able to acknowledge that I miss him but I don’t want to be miserable and lonely all of the time.

My September principles are wellness, improvement, savor and effort. I am hoping with some effort I can find an improvement to my current situation of loving and longing, to savor the moments we get to steal together and to continue to journey towards wellness and living purposely in the present.

If we can’t hold onto summer lets try to hold onto that summer feeling.

Be W.I.S.E. friends!

 

 

Game Called life

Courtesy of momlogic.com

I had one of those days. Not only am I sick to death of Miley videos, jokes, references, tweets, and innuendo, as well as devastated by the events happening in Syria I have had my own personal struggles in the form of a hormonal teenage daughter, a truck that won’t start and a husband that is hours away for the next ten days. All things considered I know that I have it so much better than a lot of people. My husband may be away but he offered to drive home to my rescue. For those of you who know me, you are aware that as much as I may think I want to be rescued it would make me feel weak and needy. I have the most wonderful friends that jumped at the chance to come to my rescue and gave me something I didn’t even know I needed. A moment to breathe, to laugh, to share a glass of wine with friends. A moment to feel like it was OK to be something other then a wife and a mother. Sometimes I need to just be me. Also, my teenage daughter really is amazing. However, she is sometimes an emotional ball of hormones that she doesn’t quite know how to handle and we are trying so hard to navigate a neatly painted line somewhere in-between crying and screaming. I am trying hard to raise a smart, capable and accountable young lady in a world full of entitled youth of Generation “I”

Recently I have been faced with that all too familiar struggle of trying to split 200% of myself between all the things that matter in my life. When one thing requires more attention I seem to lose my balance and the balls I am juggling come crashing down. I stand tall against whatever I am faced with in life but sometimes I feel like I am inevitably going to fall.

I know that a lot of people feel how I am feeling right now. Wondering how they can be everything they need to be to the people in their lives and still have enough left over for themselves. I know how important it is to take time for myself. If I were to give advice to any of my friends I would most definitely tell them that they are the most important person in their lives and they need to make the time for themselves. Giving advice is always the easy part.

It has been fifteen months since I quit my job to stay at home. My biggest fear was losing myself, being insignificant and dependent. I think my family has absolutely benefited from me being home but often I feel I am spending way too much time trying to convince them that I am not a maid. I am an involved parent, sometimes to the point that I am not the wife I would like to be or a good friend to myself. I am still figuring it all out. I don’t strive for perfection, just quiet imperfection and happiness. I pray sometimes and I still wish on stars.

My goal is laugh more, to steal time for myself to do the things that are important to me, to say no to things that I don’t have time for and that add stress that I don’t need. I want to experience the moment without worry or anticipation of the next. I want to be present and accounted for in my own life. I want to learn from my mistakes without holding myself in constant judgment. I want to expect less of people but quietly encourage more. I want to abandon the idea of who I think I should be and be the person I know I can be. I want to love more, and forgive things that weigh me down.

Here I go….wish me luck as I continue to play my hand at this game called life!

P.S. I also need to make more time for wine!!

Game Called Life (The Big C Main Title) by Leftover Cuties

It’s so hard to turn your life over
Step out of your comfort zone
It’s so hard to choose one direction
When your future is unknown
Is this some kind of a joke, will someone wake me up soon?
And tell me this was just a game we played, called life.
Are we, are we all really slaves?
By the hands of ourselves
id I really make all of those mistakes?
Am I really getting older?Then why do I feel so lost?
Is this some kind of a joke, will someone wake me up soon?
And tell me this was just a game we played, called life.
And at the end of the road, is there someone waiting?
Do I get a medal for surviving this long?
Is this some kind of a joke, will someone wake me up soon?
And tell me this was just a game we played, called life.
Is this some kind of a joke, will someone wake me up soon?
And tell me this was just a game we played, called life.

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