Friday, November 06, 2009

Developing My Skill Set

I spent the afternoon with my big kids, and by "with my big kids," I mean I was sometimes in the same house they were in, but mostly they played with their friends. I get the sense that, despite the lack of quality time spent together, Mary Liz would prefer that I still take them to school and pick them up most days. And, oh, I hate to disappoint the girl that raced away from my car because her friends across the street were home, but my life is ever so much better now that my days are not broken up by drop-off and pick-up and sometimes interrupted altogether by random days off from school. I still love the kids dearly, but I do not miss the Catholic school schedule, and I do not miss how many times a week I popped into Starbucks to grab an iced mocha to have in the car while I waited for them. Not that I don't love my baristas and enjoy chatting with them, but the habit was doing nothing for my waistline or my wallet. It's just all around better to have made the change. It was a hard change to own up to, and it was excruciating explaining to the kids' mom that, yes, I really did need to change my schedule, and no, it wasn't personal, but pretty much every day I am so glad I made the choice that I did.

This was no small thing for me, saying what amounted to a gigantic NO to people who really felt they needed me. I come from a background of serving and serving and serving some more, and if someone needs something and you can do it, you should! But that's not something that's really true; sometimes even if you can do it, you really shouldn't. I have learned this the hard way, and I am getting better. It is a good lesson, and if the end result of the effort is always this good, I have an excellent incentive to develop this skill further.

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