A few blogs ago we talked a bit about finding love that lasts and how that dirty four letter word – fear – impacts love, decisions, motivation and life in general, so I thought I would share a recent fear of my own.
It feels like a transitional period for me, we are thinking of starting a family soon and it has been one thing after another that has delayed our plans. My friend asked me the other day if I was scared, and I don’t know that I have been asked that since we have been trying to plan the “right time” to have a baby. After I finish school, after the half-marathon, after the exotic vacation, after I lose weight. Are you ever ready? Is there ever really the “perfect” time? I spent the last few weeks thinking about that question, and I still don’t know the answer.
Fear is an interesting emotion. It illicits such varied responses in people. There are definately themes though. We discussed the flight or fight and the paralysis response in the love blog. One way to express fear is through avoidance and procrastination. If I just don’t think about it or make a decision, then I can avoid the potentially unwanted end result, or I can avoid responsibility for making a mistake, because if I never make a decision, then how can I be held accountable? The crazy things my brain can come up with to prevent discomfort–or so I think… or want to tell myself. There is definately discomfort with this strategy. This back and forth, making a decision, then changing to something else, being non-commital, it is avoidance in its richest form. Ultimately, sharing a new life with the man I love, could and would never be a mistake, so what is my delay?
The truth — YES I AM SCARED! I am. See, what I want more than anything is to be a good mom, to share love and joy as a family, to teach a little person all the cool stuff I know and to learn from them many things I do not know. Several years ago, I shared this fear with my Best Friend. She said something that brought instant tears to my eyes. I was playing with her daughter and she said, “look how good you are with her, how much she loves you, you will be an excellent mom!” Sometimes it is the simplest things that we say to the ones we love that mean so much, that can change their reality. That meant a lot to me, I still think about it and how much I learned by just being around that little baby all the time. She was a wonder to marvel at, watching her develop and grow…and the giggles! Awww, my favorite part!
And of course there are the other silly things to worry about, will I get too fat? Will we have enough money? Will the baby be healthy? Did I wait too long – we only get a certain number of eggs ya know! Will we still live in this apartment? Will we still live in this city, even? Will I freak out at the thought of going back to work and leaving my child with some stranger they call a day care provider? Will I do something wrong, like not feed the baby enough or too much, or wait too long to change the diaper, not put them to bed at the right time? And of course the list goes on…I am thinking I am not alone, right? Many women face these same crazy list of questions.
I have seen friends and family partake in parentage and have seen the amazing responsibility and reward a life with children brings. I am an overachiever – I always want to do my best or I dont want to do it at all. Perhaps that is the thing that holds me back, I want to be there, I want to spend time with them and I dont want to miss out on anything. My hubby is great and I know he will be supportive and loving; he will do his part to make sure the kids are raised well, taken care of and feel loved, safe and secure, so that is one thing that eases my mind.
But, what if? Aaarggghh! The blasted what if question that destroys drive! I also think about work. See, I care about my career and understand that there are sacrifices that will have to be made to move up the ladder, and I do not want to sacrifice time with my family. I love working, and helping people, but I do not want to be in a work situation that requires a lot of travel, a lot of hours, or so much stress and responsibility that I cannot leave the office at the office. I am 7 months into this new job, and I am not sure which direction I want my future career to take. How do I draft a plan that allows me to move up and have the time with family that I want? I am exploring some different paths I can take to create a good balance.
The great thing about saying it out loud (you know the stuff that scares us) is the peace that comes after. I process my emotions out loud, so now that the emotion is out on the page, it’s easier to let it go and feel good about making a decision, no matter the outcome. That’s the lesson here readers, the result you get from nothing is more times than not, NOTHING. So, take action… DO SOMETHING!! At least you will have tried, made the effort, asked the question and turned that e-motion (fear) into energy in motion which generally results in an escape of energy and a release in tension. You know, like after you have a good cry, and are ready for a nap.