Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Putting myself first

I am still struggling. I'm working more than I'd like, getting behind with my studies because of family upsets - my Nanna is dying and it's affecting my children and myself in a way I didn't think it would. I feel in a constant state of stress, and I don't know what to do about it.

I have started working in the Libraries which I love, I'm constantly surrounded by some of my favourite things, books and enquiring minds! The problem I have with working in this wonderful environment is that I see all these amazing books I am so keen to read, but I can't because I have to come home and study.

* - I want to take time to prepare the amazing foods I used to make, but when I get home, I'm exhausted, so I throw together food for convenience, because I know I still have about 4 hours of study in front of me.

* - I want to exercise, knowing that it will give me energy to cope with my day, but I can't find the 2 hours of time anymore to get to the gym every day.

* - I want to spend more time with Nanna in the nursing home in her final days, but by the time I'm finished work, she's too exhausted to see visitors.

* - I  want to watch my daughter at netball, but the two nights a week she does netball, I'm at work, so her father has to take her.

* - I want to pick up a book off the shelves at work, and read for joy, for pleasure and because I am interested in something - and if I am not enjoying the book, I want to be free to put it down without consequence.

* - I want to spend more time doing things at the farm, playing with my animals,  and put my hands in the dirt again.

All of these things that I can't do are things I did, all the time - I trained daily, I cooked amazing foods, I read for pleasure, I attended every game, I saw family and friends whenever I pleased.

The thing that changed me from doing to wanting, was getting a job. I briefly considered going back to full time study, as it afforded me the time to do all the things I wanted, and had me feeling in control of my life. But the reality is, I enjoy most of my job, and I enjoy the financial independence that it affords me - so it stays.... but perhaps  I need to look at the hours I work.

I am aware that I really need to put myself first. I need to take the time to do the things I love, to garden, to eat, to play, and to explore the world. I want to have coffee with my friends, I want to exercise and to feel good about myself again.

So I made a decision - the thing I have in my life that I would miss least is University. While I enjoy what I'm learning, essentially I was doing the course to help me learn skills to help me live a more sustainable life, to get a great job that I enjoy, and to help me learn practices to improve the farm. I decided I can learn anything I want when I work in a library - without exam/study stress, I have a great job that pays well and that I enjoy, and  I don't need a Bachelor of Science to help me on the farm!

So I am taking time off from Uni. I'm putting myself first. I am going to take the time to balance my life. Hopefully, come September, I'll get a permanent 3 day position at the Library which will give me 4 days a week to have the life I want!

I realise I'm not the only person struggling at the moment - several of my wonderful Warrior Women (a fitness group I'm a part of) are having a hard time too, some are slightly off the track - others couldn't find it with a detailed map. I am hoping that we can all find a way to put ourselves first, to find the time and to find our collective mojo's. Perhaps we need to work on a group plan/challenge?