Measuring up…or not…

As I sit here munching on a gummy octopus (yes, my child’s candy. I have no self-control whatsoever, and am only slightly embarrassed at this point to admit it) catching up on Dr. Blake mysteries, I can’t help but reflect on my day, or really the last few years  my whole life, if the truth is really to be told (typed? You know what I mean). If your thinking this is going to be a debbie-downer post, you are 100% right, but with a twist, so please let me get it all out and hang on for the cliché light-at-the-end-of-the-tunnel-positivity at the end.  Even positive people need a little downer post every now and then, amirite?

Life has not been adding up for me lately. I’m in this weird funk that I can’t seem to shake or bounce back from.  A lot of times, I’ll have a moment of weakness and just have  a small, little, pity party for a bit and then bounce back and my “normal” happy-go-lucky self, but lately, I just haven’t been measuring up, in my eyes or more paranoid, in anyone’s eyes. I’m hoping writing all this out and venting will help me wipe my proverbial slate clean and let me bounce back.

My dear, sweet, adorable, three-year old, threw his dagger at me again today and I think it was just one of those things that was the straw that broke the camels back or in this case, the dam that was holding back my tears. I haven’t had a good cry in ages, so I know I was due one (and not it isn’t even close to my time of the month before you go off thinking it’s hormones, although I guess it doesn’t have to be your time of the month for your hormones to be out of whack, so disregard that last statement, It’s entirely probable that my hormones are out of wack, but I’m not sure why). Regardless, it was a ugly, sobbing sort of cry, so I’m glad I got that out of the way.

My three-year told me I wasn’t his best friend. Now, I know that’s a typical three-year-old statement and that I’m making a mountain out of a mole hill, but in that instant I saw the disappointment, the anger, and the frustration that my toddler was experiencing because I wasn’t living up to his expectations. Granted, his expectations at the moment is for me to let him do whatever he pleases, but hearing those words and seeing his facial expression reminded me of… well… me. I’m not my best friend either, if I’m being completely honest with myself, nor anyone else’s. I’m not going to lie, hearing those words and hearing him talking all the time (no exaggeration here either, this is like an everyday conversation) about how his grandmother and dad are his best friends, but constantly never making the cut, just wears a mom down after a while. I always had this vision that my child would always be the one that would stick by me and love me with everything he had, and I would, in turn, do the same. What I forgot to include in my vision, is that he’s human, just like the rest of us, and that sometimes he’s simply just not going to like me. It’s the facts of life, and honestly, as a mom, I should hope that he won’t like me at times. It would mean that I was fulfilling my role and shaping him into a better tiny human, but it doesn’t mean that it hurts any less.

I’m simply not measuring up.

As I’m typing this, I see toys strung all over the house, I have a load of laundry in my dryer that I need to fold and put up, dishes in the dishwasher that need to be put away, the stove needs to be cleaned, I need to clean my cast iron skillet that’s in the sink (and has been there for three days now), I need to dust, vacuum, and mop. I need to do a million things, but I’m simply sitting here venting my frustrations on a blog post. WHY? I think I’ve asked myself this question a million times in one way or another every single day. Maybe not in regards to those specific tasks everyday, but there’s always something that needs to be done that I simply haven’t done. I think it’s because I have one hour to myself a day (not even every day. The days my husband is home, he gets to monopolize the TV) to have me time. I have one hour that I selfishly hoard to do whatever I want, mostly watching my shows on TV that don’t include animation of some sort. I have all these tasks that I need to complete, but I’m not doing them because I tell myself that I’ve earned my down time. But have I? If I was honest, the answer would be no, I haven’t earned it. If I had earned it, all the stuff mentioned above would be done and I wouldn’t be sitting here worrying about it. As a housekeeper…

…I’m simply not measuring up.

Then there’s the little matter of being a wife. Honestly, being a wife is hard. There are moments that I want to just runaway if I’m being completely honest. Pack up, travel the world, and move to a completely new place where no one would know me. But then reality sets in and I remember that life and those dreams aren’t going to be everything I hoped for either. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m completely smitten with my husband, but there are times that I wish I was put first in our relationship. It’s something that I didn’t really expect or thought about when we first got married. I guess I just had an ideal marriage idea in my head and there came a time that I realized that I’m never going to have that ideal. My husband doesn’t have a traditional 8-5 job and never will. I will never get to sleep  in the same bed as him every night (and honestly, I’m secretly glad for a full restful night of sleep where I don’t have to fight someone for covers and I can sleep diagonal in the bed if I want), or be able to plan my weekends without fear of something coming up, or go on a proper vacation. After all, my husband is a jack of all trades; firefighter, brick mason, and farmer, so he is ALWAYS working. In someway that is good. It means I have a hardworking, selfless husband who is a provider for our family and will do whatever it takes to help us make ends meet (although I don’t think we should have to struggle so much with him working all those jobs and me working a full-time job as well, but that’s a post for another week), but sometimes all I want is him. All I want to do is hug and kiss him, but he’s not here long enough for me to hug and kiss. Sometimes I feel like a single parent, and in a lot of ways, I am. I think that’s why my son clings to my husband when he is here because he’s trying to make up for the time they don’t get to see each other. You know what they say, absence makes the heart grow fonder. But the time apart, makes me struggle to be the best wife I can be. I try to keep the house in order so that he doesn’t have to come home to a mess. I try to cook yummy meals for him, so that he can have a full belly and leftovers to take to work. But the reality is, he sometimes comes home to toys all over the place, and dishes in the sink, because I selfishly took my hour, instead of trying to be the best wife I could be.

I’m simply not measuring up.

At work, I’m feeling overwhelmed. I have this serious guilt every time I drop my child off a daycare because I’m leaving him with random people for 10 hours every day. I long to stay home with him, but sometime I feel like the separation is healthy. I think it’s good for him to play with kids his own age and learn how to socialize, but it still breaks my heart a little on the mornings when he begs to stay at home or go to work with me. At work there is talk about decreasing our print collection. Not going to lie, I panicked a little at first. Decreased collection means decreased cataloging, which means my job could be in jeopardy. Do I think they’ll let me go? No. Do I think they’ll “repurpose” me and my position to a different department in the library? You bet your butt they would. It happened a few years ago without any warning or discussion. So now I’m feeling like I need to go even more above and beyond in my job and prove that my position as a cataloger matters in the library. It gets kind of exhausting living in the fear of being “repurposed” all the time. A lot of people don’t think that catalogers have a large presence in the library and that a library only needs a handful. Over the last 6 years, we have lost 4 positions and have had to merge with acquisitions. While it’s a logical merger, it still hearts my heart a little to realize that the cataloging positions are slowly because phased out and cut and that we aren’t viewed as a necessity.

We simply aren’t measuring up.

We’ve been discussing the book of James in church for the last few weeks. Need I say any more? The book of James is the most step-on-your-toes book in the Bible, in my humble opinion.  I really realized, I’m not measuring up as a Christian, or even as a decent human being for that matter. I haven’t been setting a good example like I should. I’m seriously flawed and I know I need to get back to being the type of person I want to be and most importantly who God wants me to be.

I’m simply not measuring up.

As a patient, I’m not measuring up. I can’t tell you the number of times that the people ordering my medicine have expressed frustration with me for forgetting to take my medicine and thus messing up my delivery dates. I have MS and am taking a relatively new medication, so they really don’t know what happens when you miss a lot of doses. Just last week alone, I forgot to take 2 doses, even with having a pill box and setting reminders! It can have serious health consequences from missing doses, so they are only venting their frustrations out of concern for my well-being which is super sweet, but still kind of downer at the same time. I’ve never like being scolded and being scolded as an adult can be a tough pill to swallow (see what I did there. C’mon, you know you like my jokes). I had my annual MRI to check my progression on Thursday and I was the human pin cushion again.  No matter how many glasses of water I drink beforehand, they always have a hard time finding a vein to insert the dye into. After getting stuck 5 times, they finally found a teeny, tiny vein in my wrist to inject it into (by the way, if you can avoid getting something injected through a teeny, tiny, vein, I seriously recommend it. That stuff hurt like nobodies business). Of course this has always led to many comments, you should work out more, you should drink more, you should weigh less, etc… I’ve been trying to work on my weight but seriously, like I said earlier about the gummy octopus, I can’t resist. I have a weakness for food. It’s my comfort for when things aren’t going right, and here lately nothing has been going right, which means more eating and thus more weight gain. I seriously disgust myself and if I disgust myself, I can’t imagine what my husband thinks, or anyone else for that matter. I know I should be concerned with what other people thing, but in all honesty, I do. I truly do care. It bothers me when people look at me for my size and not what’s on the inside.

I simply don’t measure up.

I’m not even going to go into my childhood. Maybe one day, but just know that I didn’t measure up then either. Even with straight As and graduating from my undergrad summa cum laude, I still didn’t measure up. It saddens me at time, but in other ways, it’s the force that drives me to try to better myself.

That was a lot of self-pity/venting, so I hope you are still with me. Now for the positivity.  Throughout the years, I have realized that I’m the one viewing myself as not measuring up. I feel that way. Sure, some may also think that I don’t measure up, but waht really matters is that it’s me that sees myself that way. It’s a problem within myself that I’ve always fought and will continue to fight until the day I die. For all the dirty dishes, laundry that hasn’t been put away, and toys that are out, there is a tomato plant that’s been put in the ground, broccoli that has been harvested and put away, a million other toys that have been put away, as well as loads of clothes, millions of hours that I have spent cleaning at other times, and a days of quality time that I’ve spent with my favorite three-year old at the zoo. There are countless study hours that I have sacrificed while I’m currently getting my masters. There are hugs and kisses that I have dished out to my wonderful husband and son. There are smiles that I’m responsible for creating with my corny jokes and somewhat obnoxious at times behavior. There is love in my house. For all the ways I don’t measure up, there are others that I’m hurtling over and winning at. Sure my son may not like me all the times, but when he throws those arms around me and begs for a good night kiss even when he’s mad at me, I know that I matter and that I do measure up.

I may not be my son’s best friend, but I’m his mommy and the person that he can always rely on and the person that will ALWAYS love him no matter what. I will always be by my husband’s side and try my hardest to be the best wife I can be (and of course always love him as well). I will be the best Christian I can be, but remembering that I’m not perfect and never will be, but luckily I have grace, mercy and forgiveness from God and a will to better myself and to be the person He wants me to be. I will be the best employee I can be and if my fears are realized and I do get repurposed, I will see it as a growing opportunity and a way to expand my skill set for the future. I’ll try (no will or promising on this one) to be a better patient and lose the weight I need to lose, drink more, and work out more. After all, I want to be here as long as I can. But most of all, I’m going to stop being my own worse enemy and realize that for every way I mess up and don’t add up to what I want to be, to just remember that I’m not a super human and that it’s okay to stumble and fall, as long as I jump back up, dust myself off, and carry on.


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