Sunday, March 17, 2013

March 17: Getting What I Need...

Food Truck night!...


Happy St. Patrick's Day to ya!

So.  Another week under our belt.  Ever have the experience that you are 'surviving' a week/month/year, etc.?  Sometimes Ang's and my schedule catapult into warp speed, and it can feel that way.  For example, Ang just traveled 7 of the past 9 days between two different trips back east.  Uff da!  Next, I travel two of the next three weeks.  Then, I'm home for two weeks, and Ang travels again.  When each of us is running cover at home for the other while they travel, there is an element of survival at work! LOL.  Ang and I both salute with the deepest and utmost respect single parents.  'Playing one' for a few days or a week certainly doesn't even touch the experience, but that sense of "anything that needs to get done has to get done BY ME" is distinct and different.  It requires a whole extra gear.

On Wednesday night, for example, I learned that Julian can project the contents of his stomach over his head in the air while laying flat in his crib.... twice.... with NO warning.  The kid got a total of THREE baths that night and two loads of laundry done before he finally collapsed from exhaustion at midnight. I will TOTALLY CONFESS RIGHT HERE that if Ang had been home, I would have hoped she would have been the one to give him those two extra baths.  However, with her in New Jersey, ain't nobody gonna do it but me!  I jumped into some hyper productive mode that I honestly remember from Bella time, but haven't had to access it with the same urgency since.

It's nice to be pushed to remind me how strong and resourceful I actually am.  Muscles and bones grow stronger from eustress (positive stress versus distress), and I think our 'coping muscles' are exactly the same way.  If we don't 'work them out' on a regular basis, they atrophy, and when we get hit by a big stressor, we are 'out of shape' and it wears us out.  This is one reason I feel strongly that people should exercise and strengthen their bodies.  It is a complete metaphor for their spirit as well, because to strengthen the body, one has to stare exhaustion, fatigue and discomfort in the face and push right through it.

What's on the other side?

The experience of being stronger than your complaints, your worries, and your stories about what is possible and impossible.

I've stood on the other side of that wall enough times to 'remember it' when I'm down, but what of the person who doesn't have a library of experiences to draw on when they feel beaten by some circumstance?  That circumstance just might win the day.  I am so committed that people live empowered lives that I actually think about this daily... like... how can I empower more people to beat their disempowering stories about life? about grief? about being fit? about WHATEVER it is that is important to them.  I live inside a constant state of dissatisfaction related to whether I am touching enough people.  The good news is that the intensity of that urgency comes and goes.  It's not always over the top, but you know how there's a "learning curve" in life?  I think about a "serving curve," and that drives me to be thinking about how I can serve more and more people.

Can you hear the perfectionist in me leaking out!?  Why do I say perfectionist?  Well, a perfectionist isn't EVER satisfied with the level of production or execution or success they ARE experiencing.  So, while I AM actually reaching many people on a daily and weekly basis, the perfectionist in me wonders, "Yeah, but is it enough? Why aren't you reaching more?"  more more more.  Like an unquenchable thirst.  That's the curse of perfectionism.

The GOOD news is that I am in recovery. ;-)

I admitted I 'had a problem' with perfectionism in 1998, and I've been steadily and imperfectly working on accepting what is rather than what I think "should be."  In fact, with my coaching clients, I have them strike the word 'should' from their vocabulary!  Try it!  It's very liberating.  I am a work in progress. That's what I remind myself.  I am so grateful to be a work in progress, and I am so grateful that I get to share my imperfections with you and the world, hopefully reminding both me and you that it's human for all of us to struggle with all of this stuff.

I'm off to Chattanooga, TN this week to give a keynote at a regional music therapy conference for our professional association.  I am so honored to have the opportunity to share my life and my passion with my colleagues.  One of the things that trips me up sometimes is the fact that I have only been a music therapist for 4 years now!!!  What do I know about anything that I could share with so many that have been at this for so much longer?  Well, then, I laugh at myself and thank me for sharing my concern.  Again, the perfectionist says essentially, "You aren't enough yet.  You need more _______."

More more more...

Can you relate?

As if I stand at the edge of a forest with a saw with the task of cutting my way through, except I can't start because my blade isn't sharp enough...

Well, guess what?

I think it is.  ;-)

God night.


  1. Great post! Safe travels! Kim

  2. In my Sunday school class last week we were discussing when we reach the pinnacle; when do we get to the point where we can stop changing and developing. We were specifically discussing our faith but I think it is a whole life package kind of a deal. The answer we came up with is never. At least we should never stop, because that is the whole point of life. Every hurdle and experience and person we come in contact with helps to change us and keep us moving in some direction, for better or worse!
    I know that you and your family have touched my life and I am so greateful that you have shared your journey with us! I know Bella touched mroe people that I can ever hope to and she did it in such a short period fo time. Its just amazing what some people can do with the little bit of time they are given!
    Have a great week!
    Kelley in MO

  3. Love your posts! Good luck on the crazy schedule and traveling!

  4. This was a great post! I don't know how you do it. Miss you guys and your kids! Great pics, can't wait to see you again soon!

  5. Hey tim just found you by accident wondered if you remembered me I'm steven use to live at the flynn inn with justin jason sean and addrian

  6. You defenetely touched many lives and I hope you never stop!
    Always reading your post.
    Mariana, UK