Saturday, July 23, 2016

No News is Good {Celebrate this Week 7-23-16}

We all know that the world is a pretty frightening place right now. Shootings, bombings, murders, despair and tragedy are flashed before us in a constant news cycle.  Reporters report on the same stories over and over, sometimes repeating the same events for days on end. Over time, this has a tendency to wear us down and numb us to all the goodness in life.

This summer, I've made a conscious effort to turn off the TV news. I have seen about two newscasts since the end of May, and those were because my husband was watching as we were heading off to sleep.

I still know all the bad stuff is happening out there, but I don't need to be reminded of it 24/7. I don't need the emotional stress of all the tragedy. I don't think it's healthy. I still hear about events through conversations with other people, on the radio, or through social media. I'm not completely oblivious, I have just chosen not to constantly expose myself to bad news. The only thing I miss about not seeing the daily news is the weather forecast.  Luckily, there's an app for that.

Since going on a news vacation, I am definitely happier. I have more time for reading, gardening and cooking. I am not drawn to a schedule dictated by when the news is on.  I can think about world issues and come to my own conclusions, not those that are voiced to me by news people with their own agenda. As a side benefit, my husband is picking up a book to read more often than reaching for the remote control at night.

I truly feel more mindful and peaceful. And happier.  {Did I mention happier?}

For this, I celebrate.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Fear Not {Celebrate This Week 7-16-16}

I feel a shift coming.

It's a change that I've known would be coming some day. As it turns out, that some day is now.

This fall, I will be sending my oldest off to college. His sister, my only other child, will begin her senior year of high school. Major changes are coming.

I used to fear this.

Fear of not being needed, not being busy, not having a house full of kids. Fear of losing my identity as a mother and not knowing what comes next. Fear of being bored or feeling useless or unneeded.

But it turns out, those fears may have been for nothing.

I've gotten a taste of this parenting change this summer. Both of my kids work two jobs so they are pretty much gone all the time. My husband is a retail pharmacist, working several nights a week. Often that leaves me. Just me.

And I have to say....It is okay.

I find lots of things to keep me busy, possibly even busier than I was when the kids were younger. But it's a different kind of busy. It's a busy that is focused on me. It's a busy that leaves me feeling fulfilled in a way I didn't expect.

I read, I write, I work in the garden, I sit in silence with the dogs and watch the sun set, I make myself dinner (or not), I meet friends for coffee. I run on my own schedule, not someone else's.

I've spent a lot of time this summer thinking about this new way of life. It's not as bad as I thought it would be.

Sure, I will miss my kids desperately when they go off to college. But I also recognize that this will allow our relationship to grow in new ways.

It is all going to be okay.

For this, I celebrate.