August Moon 14, Day 2: right now

My day breaks down like this:

430-515ish: nurse baby

515-530ish: awake, get out of bed, turn off alarm.  contemplate going back to bed, conclude that it’s not worth it.

530-600: weigh, shower, teeth, ablutions

600-645: coffee, cereal, pack lunch, pack pump parts, makeup, perfume, dress, out door

645-705: commute.  ESPN radio.

705-1100: work.  stop to pump around 900.

1100-1200: lunch.  run errands if needed.

1200-405: work.  stop to pump again around 200.

405-435: commute.  ESPN radio to start – I change it when Finebaum starts taking callers.

435-715: change out of work clothes.  cuddle kids. debrief Manly on the day’s activities.  make/serve/eat dinner.  nurse baby.  write if possible.

715-830: kids bedtime.  bath, teeth, pjs, potty, books, songs, tuck in, hugs and kisses, lamp on, music on, lovey found, door cracked, light off.

830-1000: catch up on dvr, surf social media, video games, chores.

1000: think that I should go get in bed.

1030-1100: actually get up and get ready for bed. teeth, vitamins, pjs, fetch baby.

1100: asleep (up 2x during night to nurse baby)

I spend so much time thinking about how I want my life to look – but this is the first time in a long time in a long time that I’ve documented how it actually is.  Between work and commute, I’m out of my house 50 hours a week.  That’s 42% of my available time between Monday and Friday.  Another 25% is spent sleeping (and that’s a generous estimate of 6 hours/night – it’s probably actually less) (and it should be 33% (8 hours/night) for me to actually be well-rested). That only leaves 25% of my time for everything else that I want or need to do during the week. 

It’s hard.  It’s a slog.  I continually feel rushed, stressed, and like I never have enough time to fit everything in. Each activity, each decision is a choice, a trade-off of something that I won’t get to do instead.  Who/what needs my attention the most?  And it’s almost always not me.  I end up stealing time from myself and consistently prioritize my own needs last.

What’s missing?  Sleep.  Exercise.  Time to sit and simmer and think without pressure.  I keep thinking, if I could only catch up!  If I can only …   But that’s futile.  This is where I am, and this is where I have to start working to align my actions with my values. 


August Moon 14, Day 1: intention

On Saturday, my email notification pinged on my phone.  I was in the middle of birthday party prep, but I always check to see if it’s something I need to read immediately.  When I saw it was from Sarah Kathleen Peck, I stopped to read it through – and I’m glad that I did.

“[Grace is] the softness to allow something good to happen to you, even in uncomfortable ways; the realization that the universe is far larger than we are and works in mysterious ways.”

Ooof.  That took the air out of me, reading that sentence.

Grace is an uncomfortable idea for me.  I grew up with in a church that pounded home, every Sunday, how undeserving I was of god’s grace.  How I was a sinner, and worthless, but for the mercy of the omnipotent creator … the one who made me that way in the first place.  If I sound bitter about it, it’s because I am.

Even with that, I have held on to the idea of grace.  I’m a statistician, so to me grace has become the idea that I was lucky enough to be born into this place, lucky enough to be born the person I am, lucky enough to have lived the life I live.  I don’t believe that any god put me here or decided my fate – this is just what it is.  I believe in the big bang, in evolution, in the inevitable death of the universe.  My life is simply a microscopic piece of the chain of events that links the beginning and end of time, there is no great overarching meaning to why I am here.  I simply am.

But grace.  To understand and realize that this life I have is a good one, that beautiful things surround me, that most people do not have even the chance to live the way I do.  And to be grateful for that.  To accept that I have a good thing, and that it is not my fault that everyone does not have these same chances, and that I cannot fix the injustice in the world, and that my guilt serves no one any purpose… that is grace.  To forgive myself, and to heal from the mindfuck that told me I was unworthy.  To believe in my own worth, and wholeness, and agency. 

That’s grace.

My intention is to explore this idea of grace, to explore how to be gentle with myself and extend to me the same courtesy and softness that I give to others.  To give myself the benefit of the doubt and assume good intentions with the decisions I make.  To act like someone that I would want to be friends with.  To make decisions that will make me the best version of myself. 



August Break: Today is …


A work day, not a home day, in Smaller’s vernacular.  My office has a gorgeous courtyard filled with crepe myrtles that are all in bloom right now.  When a breeze blows through, petals shower down, dusting shoulders and hair with pastel polka dots and fill the cracks between paving stones with ribbons of soft summer color.

August Break: Window


It doesn’t look like a window to anyone else, I’m sure.  But this is what I painted this morning – an image from my memory, looking out my office window one grey, rainy morning.  The mist was so thick that all the landscape details were muted into thick bands of color, imprinted on my mind’s eye.