Back Home Again in Indiana
If there’s one thing 2020 taught me, it’s that I cannot be trusted to know what I need. Every ounce of my being can be crying out for a break, but instead of taking a break, I’ll keep pushing and ultimately find myself crying in the closet wondering how I got there (such a mystery). So in light of this trait all the therapists recommend, I’ve decided my word for 2021 is “relax”.
If you haven’t heard of the word of the year concept, it’s where you pick a word to sum up what you want to focus on in the new year. Some people do this in tandem with their New Year’s resolutions/goals, but since I have none of that new year energy/motivation this year, the word is a solo act over here.
Ideally you want your word to work several ways which, despite my giving this endeavor zero forethought, mine does. In an effort to make my husband stop yelling at me, I plan to spend the year working on literally relaxing – things like actually taking breaks throughout the day and maybe even a real vacation this year (please for the love of your mom let there be a real vacation this year). But I also plan on relaxing things like my standards. If I’m exhausted and would rather sit down to watch a show, read a book, or stare into the abyss instead of ::insert chore here::, then I’ll just sit on my couch and fondly remember when Jesse was in grad school and my house looked like the bottom of a cereal box but we all survived anyway, even if it did make me a little twitchy.
My expectations also need to be relaxed. 97% of the three things I was looking forward to last year turned out to be nightmares while most of the things I was slightly dreading turned out to be better than I expected. I realize there are life coaches yelling at me right now about how if you set the bar low you set your life low, but this is why I’m not a life coach (although with that little gem I just made up maybe I should be). I am, however, a mother and have spent the last 5 years learning that if you take your child out into the world, you should fully expect it to go off the rails and if it doesn’t, you’ll be pleasantly surprised. What I’m saying is I’m now treating life like a toddler.
The catch in all this, of course, is that I have absolutely no idea how to be a chill person. This isn’t exactly a startling revelation at this point because what chill person devotes an entire blog post to their new life goal of learning to relax? An uptight chill person trying to prove they can be a chill person, that’s who. And that’s me. This should be great.