43 days down, 322 to go!
Dear College Ruled Yellow Paper,
I would be lost without you. I need you like I need water. You keep me going because you free me. You free me of all the thoughts which are bogging me down and stressing me out. You give me clarity. So thank you. Please don’t ever disappear even in this ridiculous digital age. In my eyes, no computer or App can replace you.
The Orange Rhino
I have a confession to make. I am in love with someone beyond my husband, my kids, my family, my friends. I, The Orange Rhino, am in love with my yellow college-ruled (NEVER ever wide ruled) pads of paper. I have one in the kitchen and one next to my bed. Whenever I feel like my head is going to explode from the constant bombardment, I turn to my dear friend, the yellow pad of paper.
You see, while some people do Yoga to find calm, I make to-do lists, schedules and charts to find calm! It simply brings me inner peace. When my mind is feeling crazy and overwhelmed by my ridiculous, over ambitious ideas of what I need to do to be a better mom, what Dr. appointments I need to make, what house chores I need to do, what house chores I would like to do, what personal goals I have, yadda yadda yadda, I put it all down on one of my many yellow pads of paper. And then I organize it. And then I turn to the other two things I love – Microsoft Excel and Microsoft PowerPoint – and make a “fancy” prioritized to-do list, or a “fancy” color-coded schedule, or a “fancy” chart. And I feel better. Much better. Nothing gives me a greater natural high than making a list or a chart.
While the graphic representation of the inside of my mind can be frightening, I still love the order, the organization, the clarity it brings. I love being able to physically see how to proceed, how to stay calm. My lists and my charts are my map to get away from my mental chaos…and I would so be lost without them.
So it should be of no surprise when I started feeling challenged, feeling mental overwhelmed on this Challenge, when I started Digging Deeper, that I got pen and paper and made a chart. Several Charts actually. And guess what, I found clarity. Lots of it.
See Exhibit 1 & 2 (LOL as I write that): What Triggers, my Triggers?
From these two charts, I was able to figure out the main driver at the root of all my yelling.
I am an IMPATIENT person.
I am impatient. There I said it. I am an impatient person. And what I feel propelled to write next is “I always have been, always will be.” But I refuse to accept that. I will NOT always be an impatient person. I am going to become a more patient person. Full stop. Period. Why? Besides the obvious that patience is a good thing?
Because “love is patient.”
On our wedding day, my husband and I promised to each other to be Patient and I owe the same promise to my sons.
How can I live up to that promise? Well I need to understand what drives me to be Impatient…besides DNA. I love you and all dad, but I could have done without your impatient gene. That’s a joke by the way. I like my DNA. Mostly. But seriously, what does drive me to be so impatient – with my kids, with my life, with myself?
Well another sketch helped figure that one out. See Exhibit 3, re-drawn for legibility purposes AND with some blanks. Can’t give everything away now!! I have 322 more days to blog!
Exhibit 3: I am Impatient Because…
Well crap, there is A LOT on this chart. A LOT. It is frightening indeed (especially since the empty boxes have been my life long personal challenges! But oh do I feel like a weight has been lifted. You see, all these lines with words, well these words have been bouncing around in my head for years. Driving me nuts. Making me feel overwhelmed because I KNEW that they were giving me a headache, literally and figuratively. But seeing them on paper, formally identifying them and now sharing them with the Orange Rhino Community, well, it is empowering. Because now I can’t hide anymore behind the excuse of “I don’t know why I am so stressed, why I am so impatient.”
Because, yes you do, Orange Rhino, yes you do. It is time to TAKE CHARGE, it is time to work on you. Because the nicer me, the nicer mom, the nicer more loving kids I will raise. Or at least that is my theory. Here’s hoping it works!
How will I take Charge? Did I get a map out of these other charts? Yup! But I’ll save that for a rainy day (ie. when I am ready to expose myself even more…could be a while!)
P.S. I hope this post maybe inspired you a little, made you think a little, but if neither of those I hope it made you laugh A LOT at my DORKINESS!!! Wow can NOT believe I just publicly shared these charts with strangers…