“Growth is painful. Change is painful. But nothing is as painful as staying stuck somewhere you don’t belong.”
My friend Karin nodded.
“I can continue to listen, and you can continue to talk, but I think you already know what needs to be done. You aren’t stuck on this.”
She was right, of course.
I wasn’t stuck.
I was afraid.
Afraid of walking away from something that didn’t quite jibe with my life at the time. Fear was steering me in the wrong direction. At what expense? I’d been down this road before. When it came to men, I was the master of diving in head first, goggles off and blinders on, then acquiescing, coalescing, agreeing, and succumbing, until one day I found myself drowning in a situation that had I been true to myself I would have never been in.
We create our own destiny.
Yes, I believe that fate and karma and lots more things influence our future, but the person stewarding the ship is us. And ultimately, we are accountable to only ourselves.
What’s put this top of mind this morning? It’s Sunday. It’s rainy. It’s Spring. Tulips are erupting. Daffodils blooming. Birds returning. Tree buds falling. Grass greening. Winter retreating. Taxes nearing. Accounts depleting. Reality realizing.
Well, just a few things, I suppose.
Last night at Improv, Rad Uncle’s set, included time travel and minute-long moments of introspection the results of which included children, divorces, sex changes, and more. Thinking of the hilarity and absurdity of the set (hey, it’s Improv so anything can happen) I realize that we don’t need hours or days to look inside. Sometimes all we need is a split second when the gut twinges and the eye twitches, which trigger the brain to make the right call. Other times a mother or friend, deftly serve up a swift kick in the ass or tell us what we already know so we can do what we need to do. It’s the art of simultaneously triggering and silencing one sense to tap into the other. You knew what needed to be done, but you heard it. And presto! What do you know? Now you can do what you needed to do all along.
This blog post populated my head this morning as I made the coffee, emptied the dishwasher, filled the dishwasher and started to go through the list of things that need to be done so I can ready this house for sale. The to-do list includes concrete actions, from painting to spackling, to purging and staging. As I poured the coffee, stirred in the two teaspoons of raw sugar and splashed it with milk, I recalled the conversation with my friends Linda and Leslie last night after Improv, and I realized I was stuck. And I was afraid. Yes, the decision to sell this house is right. I’ve done the numbers. You can’t sugarcoat them. Nonetheless, what I had not done, until this moment, is given myself permission to sell.
It’s the emotional side of the decision-making process that trips us up every time. All the work that went into buying this house. All the dreams that I had for us in this house. All the sacrifices made to keep this house. All of that needs to be accepted as the right action at the right time. And now it’s time to move on and move out.
Karin was talking about something entirely different a few weeks ago when she told me I knew what needed to be done. This morning I now think that she deftly provided a soft kick to the ass to help me get here. I needed to remove all the construction cones to refocus on this life as a mother and do what needs to be done. Funny that the rain had to come to help me see this clearly.
Like Mandy Hale wrote: “Growth is painful. Change is painful. But nothing is as painful as staying stuck somewhere you don’t belong.”