Monday, January 27, 2014

Quality, unquantifiable.

Ah, little blog, how I have missed you. I still feel like I will never get this project of mine off the ground. I think I wrote the last post in October? Well, a semester, a month long break, a new year, a coming home to severe water damage, a move, a replacing a lot of our damaged stuff, and a new semester later, I am finally in a place to pick this back up.

First order of business, I changed the name of the blog, I liked the old one, but something about it was nagging me. I didn't want this to turn into another mommy blog, where my motherly exploits (although awesome and tragically hilarious) became the only topics. I love motherhood with all I am, but there are  times when it utterly exhausts me and I don't want the few people who read this to be exhausted by a  constant barrage of banal mommy anecdotes. I will forever be a Mrs. and a Mommy and a Minimalist, but the new title makes more room for all the other facets of life.

The imagery surrounding a light in the attic is very special to me, and as all symbols, has multiple, layered meanings. It represents my efforts to keep my thoughts clear and unpolluted from the darkness (postpartum depression, SAD, and other mental issues) that sometimes permeates through the rest of my body (the house). It serves as a personal reminder to keep my intellect sharp through the challenges of raising a young family. It represents a desire to have the courage to let others see my little attic light in the hopes that I make at least, a connection, at best a difference.

So without further ado... the first post for the slightly revamped blog:

I am done measuring my self worth in terms of quantity: the number of pounds on the scale, the letter grades I received in college, the number of things I successfully finished on my to-do list, the number of times I lost my temper at my kids. I am making the switch to quality. Quality of live over the quantities of life.

I'll use the pounds on the scale as the main example. Like many insane people do at the onset of January 1 (each and every single, stupid January 1), I started making my list of resolutions. And whaddya know? The very first goal on my list was a number. I had a number in my mind of what I wanted to weigh by the end of the year. Keep in mind there is nothing inherently wrong about wanting to lose a little bit of weight, but I was setting my perceived success or failure of an entire year on an arbitrary, self-imposed number. I was manufacturing a self-destruct button for my New Years Resolution Robot v. 2014. I soon came to my senses and wrote out one single goal for the year: stop drinking soda. Hi, my name is's been 27 days since my last Dr. Pepper....
I didn't want a number to get in the way of what I really wanted to do, which is to exercise, eat well, meditate, de-stress, etc etc. I love to exercise with all my heart, I crave those little endorphins that flood my cranium. I relish the feeling of pushing that bar up over my head one more time than I previously thought possible. Most importantly, I love the feeling of the fog of depression being lifted away from my head and heart after an hour of sweat infused me time. You would think that someone who has such a love affair with exercise would be at it all the time. Truth is, its a good week if I find time to exercise twice, if at all. I could throw a slew of excuses at you, but they are all smoke and mirrors. The real reason I don't want to try is because of that number. What if, despite all my best efforts, the number doesn't move? Or heaven forbid, goes up? I had become so paralyzed with anxiety over a number that I was missing out on the benefits I so desperately need. Well no more.

It's easy-ish to be a perfectionist in theory, but the practical application of life is brutal. Life, for me, is no longer a numbers game.