BACKGROUND

Friday, January 30, 2009

Back Together

So tonight I finished up the paperwork for a pro bono (fancy legal term meaning "free") divorce I've been working on for my neighbor. I go to her house to deliver the paperwork and it turns out that she and her husband have gotten back together. This is a very good thing. I always love it when people can make their marriages work. It's truly a beautiful thing. So that was a piece of good news for the evening!

The rest of my evening was spent finally getting things off my to-do list and my table too! I've had lots of paperwork, mail, forms to fill out, and so on waiting on my table for quite some time. It's all sorted and filed now, with a few things left out for me to complete. It feels good to have some order to the chaos around here.

Dear Husband and I are getting up early tomorrow morning to travel to Victoria for my class and then we're heading on to San Antonio to hang out with my dad. The dogs will be making the journey with us. I will sleep in the back of Dear Husband's car with the dogs all around me on the drive to Victoria and probably the drive to San Antonio as well. It will be nice to see my dad. We're going to a play on Saturday night and I always enjoy those. We go to the same place, a dinner theatre, and it's SO amazing. The food is good and the acting is excellent. We'll return to Houston probably in the afternoon/early evening on Sunday.

That's my life for the next two days. See y'all on Sunday and I may or may not have something interesting to say next week. We'll see what life brings. Stay tuned!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Making Change

It's been an interesting week. Last Friday, my office mate was let go. She was more than a co-worker, she was also a friend so it's definitely lonely in my office now. On Saturday, I woke up before God and drove the 155 miles to Victoria for my class. I am taking Advanced Assessment this term. It covers the more advanced psychological tests. I like the professor and I think I'm really going to like the class as well. It is less work in terms of administering the test, but it's more work in terms of interpreting it. I'm eager to learn how to interpret these more advanced tests.

We're almost a month into the new year and I have to say I really feel like this is going to be a good year of change for all of us. I've changed some bad habits already and am working on others. I'm also starting to assess what I need to do in the future in terms of finishing my degree and then moving on to my internship. I'm eager to get started with this career. It's going to be a lot of fun and I am ready for that. I like my life right now, but it's a temporary stop on the ride to my real destination and I'm eager to get there.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Surround Sound

When I lay down and attempt to go to sleep (because sleep eludes me frequently), all kinds of things run through my head. I think about things I need to do at work, papers I need to complete for school or blog posts I should write. I think about my grocery list, the chores I need to do, things I need to clean out, things to donate...the list goes on and on.

The other night, I decided to try something different. I got into bed, turned off the lights, and with Peanut curled up next to me, I decided to listen to the sounds surrounding me. It was very relaxing and I fell asleep within 30 minutes, which is unusual for me. When I stopped to really listen, I heard the sound of train whistles in the distance, the rhythmic sound of Peanut breathing next to me, and the sounds of nature outside. My mind wasn't racing with thoughts and plans, but rather it was relaxing to the sounds of life around me.

Quite often, we get so caught up in the world that we fill our minds with the "loudness" of life. Rather than filling our minds all the time...STOP. And listen. Listen to the sounds of your children laughing, the sounds of your pets breathing and dreaming, the sounds of the wind blowing outside. These are things that make up the world, the things that make us tune in to what is really important. Try it sometime. When you get quiet, you'll be surprised how loudly the world speaks to you about all that is really important.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Out with the Old

One of the wonderful things about a new year is the chance to start fresh - with our diets, our exercise plans, our homes, and our relationships. That last one is very important and doesn't often get the attention it deserves.

We give a lot of time and energy to overhauling our diet and exercise, or perhaps to quitting smoking, but we don't really take a hard look at our lives as a whole. We all have people, groups, and clubs in our lives that may have served their purpose, but we don't realize it because we've never stopped to assess what we want and need in our lives.

Perhaps there's a book club or church group that was wonderful for a long time, but now you find yourself dreading the meetings or, if not dreading, just not feeling the same excitement or joy that you used to when you attended. Perhaps the group has become negative or changed in some way that no longer works for you. It's important to stop and think about how we really feel about the people and the activities we allow into our lives.

It can be very difficult when the concept of "outlived its usefulness" applies to friendships or other relationships with people. It's easier to keep people in our lives and just go along with the status quo rather than really assess the relationship and decide if it is still worthy of your time and attention. This doesn't mean that the person isn't worthy, it simply means that you may have outgrown them or both of you have moved in a direction that no longer suits a friendship between you.
Whatever the case, don't be afraid to carefully and lovingly let go of groups, clubs, and people that no longer fit your life or fit who you are. Nature abhors a vacuum so once you let go of what doesn't fit, something that does will come along and take up that space.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Exhaustion

When I would hear of celebrities being hospitalized for exhaustion, I used to think it was a cover for some other illness or drug addiction. However, I know now that exhaustion is real and I am suffering from it.

So many people seem to think that exhaustion is just being tired and if you get some sleep, you'll be fine. It is so much more than that. It's more a feeling of physical AND mental fatigue from being constantly on the go. It's a physical and mental fog. Since November 22, my life has been in constant motion. I flew out to Oregon unexpectedly that day and ended up staying two weeks while my mother was hospitalized. I was worried about my mother, completing schoolwork, and generally on the go. Two days after my return to Houston, I went back to work, took final exams for my classes, and then headed right into the Christmas season, which is stressful in many ways by itself.

It is only now that I am finally getting to catch my breath and that is only for a short time because on January 24, I will start driving to Victoria again for my classes. I will do that every Saturday for the entire semester. It's a three-hour drive one way.

Right now, I need to just be home and sleeping as much as I can. I am working, of course, but I think about making drives to places and doing things and it's just too much right now. If I can get a couple of weeks of solid peace, quiet, and rest, I'll be OK. I don't think my health insurance will pay for me to spend a couple of weeks in the hospital with exhaustion so I'm going to spend it at home reading magazines and watching recorded Oprah. If you need me, I'll be on the couch.