Happy New Year!
Let’s start this with a confession: I am the actual worst at resolutions that are supposed to last a whole year. I lose track of what I was doing, bounce to the next thing, or just get totally overwhelmed and call it quits. Hands up if you can relate because I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in this. Or at least I hope I’m not!
That said, this year I am doing things a little differently. I’m making a big resolution, but I’m breaking it down into manageable monthly goals. This is already sounding better right? I’m taking on a big big change and I am sincerely hoping that tackling it in little pieces makes it manageable because this is something I have been needing to do for quite a while. So what is my resolution?
2022 is the year I get myself out of surviving mode!
A few weeks ago it finally hit me that I had slipped so far into survival mode that I wasn’t doing any actual living. Every day was just an effort to get through and make it to the next day. It happens and I am not judging myself for getting to this point because it has been a heck of a few years…but at some point I need to make the commitment to actually living and finding joy in life again. And there is no time like the present right?
How did I get here?
The first step to making a change is understanding how I got in the situation I’m in. So in this case, how did I get so far entrenched in survival mode that I lost myself to it?
As far as I can figure it out, it started with having kids. I know how terrible that sounds, but hear me out. When Oliver was first born I worked days and Charlie worked nights. We couldn’t afford daycare and bills so it was the only option at the time. And it was rough. I absolutely do not recommend it, but if you are doing something similar now, I see you and you are phenomenal because it is difficult and can feel so overwhelming! By the time Oliver was 1, Charlie went back to active duty with the Army. Of course being at Fort Hood his pay was messed up catastrophically so I had to keep working longer than we intended. That meant an hour commute each way plus daycare drop offs and pick ups. Seven months later I quit my job and became a stay at home mom. For anyone who has made that transition, you know it is a huge adjustment. Charlie also left for a month long training and I had a miscarriage right after he left. How’s that for timing? He came back, I got pregnant again, then a few months later Charlie went on rotation to Germany and I moved from Texas to Washington to live with my mom while he was gone. I had Eloise, then a pandemic hit. Oh and throw in emergency surgery to remove the IUD that perforated my uterus and was chilling near my spine. Then Charlie was heading home from Germany and I moved back to Texas when Eloise was just 5 months old and Oliver was a bit over two and a half. Before Eloise was even a year old, we packed up our house, yet again, for a DITY move back to Washington and our new duty station. Is anyone else exhausted yet just reading this? Because I am. I lived with my mom and Charlie stayed with a friend and in hotels while we waited (and waited and waited) for a house. Then we unpacked our moving trailer in a surprise snow storm. A month later I was pregnant and had my second miscarriage. Two months later I was pregnant with Cora. I kept waiting for the intense nausea to wear off, but now that I am 39 weeks pregnant I can safely say that I never actually started feeling better. Not long after I got pregnant, Charlie left for 3 months to do Army things. I packed up the kids and went to my mom’s house because just getting out of bed felt like climbing Everest most days. He came back, then went away for another month. Then suddenly we were into the craziness of the holiday season and almost to Cora’s due date…so that brings us to today.
And I swear this is the short version. But the moral of the story is that it has felt like a very very long time since I came up for air. I’ve been so bogged down in the getting through and trying not to get taken out by the overwhelming “stuff” life has thrown my way.
Changing the narrative
If you read through all that it’s pretty easy to see how I got so stuck in survival mode. It has been a lot…but it needs to change because life is passing me by and I know I want and need and deserve to enjoy it instead of just surviving. So the logical next step is deciding what positive change looks like and how I am going to get there.
Since it’s been a long process to get here, I realize it is going to also be a process to get back to feeling like “myself” again. That’s where the monthly goals come it. My hope is that each monthly goal I set, and accomplish, will put me back on track to a more fulfilling life. Physical health, mental health, and the health of my marriage will all play a part. And I sincerely hope that achieving each goal creates habits that I continue to carry forward, not just something I do for 30 ish days then forget again!
My goal for January 2022
I’m starting it off with an “easy” one that I think will make a huge difference. I needed easier this month since I’m having a baby any day now…and we all know that’s not the time to be setting lofty goals lol.
My goal for January 2022 is to get up and get dressed. Every single day.
This might sound ridiculous to some people because it’s not much of an accomplishment in the big picture. But I have fallen so hard into the habit of just living in my pajamas unless I have to leave the house, that it feels like a really big deal to me.
I used to love picking out my outfit for the day and getting ready. But somewhere along the line it stopped being a priority. I know I feel better when I get dressed but it just became something I didn’t take the time for. So this month I am getting out of pajamas a s into some actual clothes every single day!
This post came out a little long, but I hope that in sharing my journey to get out of survival mode and start living again I may encourage someone else to do the same. If that someone is you, say hi in the comments!
As always, be sure to follow along on Instagram as I share more about this journey.
Let’s make 2022 a good year…no matter what the world throws at us!