May 08, 2012 | Permalink
[my brother's law firm and his beautiful conference room]
my oldest brother is an attorney (a really good one- if you are in need and live in utah county, his office is on freedom blvd and is so beautiful). after passing the bar years ago, he took the risk of opening his own firm because he chose the stress being both a lawyer and a small business owner over the stress of having a boss. he likes to schedule his own life.
when trying to figure out what to do with all this free time i have now, i really understood his choice, however stressful. i needed to do something i felt was important, that used my talents, without giving up my freedom to schedule my own life or the ability to be a mother first.
decision process: 1. i knew i had to get out of the freaking house, where i am alone more often than not. being a wellness counselor at good earth wasn't cutting it- a constantly changing schedule with almost no notice and consisitently too many hours= no. 2. despite my passion for my certified teaching subjects: health and psychology, i won't sign any high school contract because of the lack of flexibility. i think i'd need mental health days more often than they would prefer i called for subs. 3. i don't feel like my handmade work is it for me, especially because it doesn't solve the problem of getting out of the freaking house. 4. there came strong feelings in my heart to return to school for further education in the mental health field. (and that settled it).
we are similar, my brother and i: it's freedom over security for us. i would rather take the stress of running a therapy practice on my terms than have someone else dictate my freedom, or rather, lack of. we have a love of learning and constant reading but dislike of formal learning institutions. we like a comfy space to work in- his office is equipped with an upstairs apartment where he relaxes to movies and classic rock records while writing depositions, rather than a life sucking crap space someone else designed. we both fight through anxiety and panic, but don't give into it out of sheer will to live the life we want regardless of our weaknesses. because i know he fights many of the same demons i do, and knows how to relax and work the way i also need to, i trust his advice.
he has been the most supportive of me going back to school. i was so scared. it's been a long time, and i am NOT good at doing what, or being where, i'm told to. i texted him, "i'm scared, i think i might actually have to study now." he texted back "ya, law school was a wake up call for me too. no worries." which i took to mean, i know you're smart enough and you'll get it done, just step it up a little. something i needed to hear so bad.
he also mentioned that in a few years after passing my own licensure exams i might as well get the doctorate. confidence in me! how i needed to hear that! i am maria getting off the bus to ring the door bell of the von trapp family. my brother was the reverend mother saying this isn't the life you planned, god has shut a door for awhile, but somewhere he's opened a window. climb every mountain! his support, (and grant's), has meant so much.
i just finished my first morning of msw classes. want to know how it went? like riding a bike. a big, pain in the arse bike. but, i just picked up cate from school after my classes were done and my little girl has no idea that anything is different in our world. so, all is well. i know it will be hard, and i know i will do just fine. thanks, brett.
and for the giveaway:
blowfish let me pick a pair of their shoes (so hard to pick just one) to show how adorable they are. these monet print wedges had me at hello. i'm obsessed. they carry a ton of sandals, heels, flats, espidrilles, all so sweet and bohemian. just what i like.
blowfish is also letting me give away to a reader shoes of their choice...so get on that. all you have to do is visit their site and then comment here with which pair you like best. don't worry, you can change your mind if you win.
go here, and then come back and report! giveaway closes on tuesday morning. sorry, only open to u.s. residents.
i mean, come on.
giveaway now closed, thanks!
weekend plans: hang out with my fam (duh). try to write posts about pcos and taking care of your mental health, and get ready for my first day of grad school. eeek!
i have a wonderful therapist. she has helped me reduce the frequency and severity of my panic attacks. all crazy phobias that were paralyzing me are gone. completely. most important to me, i sleep like a baby. i was struggling so horribly with insomnia and anxious nightly obsessing that when the sun would start to go down my heart would start pounding in anticipation of the horrible hours to come. no longer. now i look forward to cozying grant and drifting off peacefully to sleep every night.
another huge change has to do with putting myself out there. meaning, physically out of my house as well as being available for relationships. i was so consumed for awhile with the fear that i backed off from every friend, rarely left my house, didn't answer emails that weren't absolutely necessary, didn't make eye contact with anyone at church, and forget the phone- no answering, ever.
i find myself craving to get back into the land of the living. to me, it is a huge sign of wellness. it had become painful to come home from a social function and over analyze what i had done wrong. now, i am making plans with people. i am dropping in on old friends. i am commenting on blogs. i am introducing myself at church. i trust myself, and care less about my idiosyncrasies.
i have always been very interested and touched by comments made here on my blog- with no ability to make a connection to the person. a change i am making is now trying to be more present in the comment section and thank you and try to get to know you and answer questions. chat with me! i really think i have the ability to let people in again.
yesterday i blogged about one of the things we are working on now- compulsive behaviors to calm anxiety (cleaning, not allowing clutter). ms. therapist says we'll have it licked in a (large) handful of sessions. i believe her. she hasn't lied to me yet.
i don't have a lot of knick knacks- if something makes it home with me from the thrift store it's because it has stolen a piece of my heart. this spoon holder on my stove is one of my very favorite things i own. but there is great irony in it: my house is spotless. always.
and i mean that in a bad way. i'm obsessive. i dust every day. i hate dust. it actually makes me physically sick when i look at my blinds or my baseboards. they refuse to stay dustless. i've been called the drink dumper many times because i don't even let people finish their glass before it's in the dishwasher. the rate at which bathtubs get grimy makes me so angry. i clean constantly. as it is, i don't want to be this way.
but, super problem: my life is about to get much, much busier. i have to lower the bar. i have to be able to go to bed without perfect cleanliness and all the laundry done. i don't know if i can. i can't function in disorder. what do i do? what? i need help. help!
to the blue-eyed one,
my little darling, you are getting an earlier bed-time. i'm sorry, but that kind of grumpiness is not going to fly. in a lot of ways this was a hard weekend for you/ us, but, i love you no matter what and will help you in all your struggles. always. i hope you enjoy family home evening tonight, i have thought a lot about what concerns you have expressed lately. i look forward to teaching and talking with you. specifically about why some prayers seem to go unanswered and why life is hard. you stretch me as a mother, but i am so grateful that you have such a sharp mind, mature spirit, and determined personality. i wouldn't have it any other way. and believe or not, i was exactly like you when i was little. i get it. love, mom
to the green-eyed one,
the things you said to me yesterday will help me through a thousand hard days. thank you. expressing your confidence in the way i conduct myself and express my thoughts, erased, at least for awhile, the constant embarrassment i feel about my over-sharing and debbie downerness. nicole tells me she needs "kelly-lite" sometimes, and i know you do too, bless your hearts! i am an over-analytical handful. but when you told me what a strength my depth and spirituality is to our family, i felt so safe. i felt so happy. i felt so sure i married the right man! love, wifey