The beginning of this week has been about forgiveness. I am learning to forgive myself when I don’t live up to my self-imposed expectations. But more importantly, I am learning to be gentler with myself, to lower my expectations and know that it will be OK. This week was hard. Not because anything tragic or even unusually difficult happened, but because the daily bits of life pressed down on me harder than usual or maybe my skin was softer than usual, but I felt pressed, ground down under the weight of all the things. My skin felt raw and bruised. Even sounds made me flinch and draw back. Patience was not my virtue this past week, and my kids, who were doing no more than being kids, felt my rawness when I verbally struck and then recoiled like a disturbed rattlesnake. But I have been learning not to flinch, to open myself to the messiness of daily life. I have been working on being soft with myself so that I might have be stronger for life’s ordinary rough edges.
In the spirit of gentleness I am focusing on these things well-done:
- showing up again. a bit sad. a bit tired. a bit worn. but here. visible. now.
- completing a digital scrapbook for a colleague who is retiring. I worked on it with my coworkers, and while it was a labor of love, it was a long and complex project and it is gratifying to see it come together as the wonderful tribute we all hoped it would be.
- beginning the clean-out of my university office, right now because the department is relocating, but later because I am relocating, emotionally, intellectually, physically.