January 2014: Embrace Your Now

Last year is gone.  The new year is here.

I spent so much of last year wondering what the new year would look like that I am having a hard time recalling what went down tin 2014.  I don’t know that I ever really had a 2014 because I was way too busy planning my 2015.  While some people struggle with keeping their heads out of the clouds, I struggle with keeping my head out of the future.

Military Spouses Need to Embrace the Now

Do you ever feel like you’re constantly planning for that next move…that next curveball…that next something?

I swear, it’s like a sickness.

Part of me wants to believe that I’ve adapted future-forward thinking because of the temporary nature of our military lifestyle, but what I’m starting to realize is that it’s not.  It’s a defense mechanism.

I don’t control where I’m going to live or what the job market looks like or whether or not we’ll live near a Target or a Starbucks or a great Thai restaurant.  I don’t have control over my husband’s schedule (nor does he) and I can’t predict when the next TDY or deployment will happen.

I’m so afraid of what might be that I can’t enjoy what is.

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It’s not a debilitating fear.  It’s not like I’m sitting in the corner in a fetal position furiously scribbling things down in my master notebook.  (Oh yes, I said “master notebook”.  I have one of those and I bet you do, too).

It’s a fear that masquerades as a super power.  My planning makes me feel invincible to the threat of unpredictability.

Don’t get me wrong, planning is a good thing- a great thing-a responsible thing.  But sometimes, just sometimes, I’m too concerned with what’s coming down the pipe that I don’t embrace the now.  It drives my mom absolutely nuts.

My mom is an old school milspouse (she’s going to slap me for that one when I see her in two weeks), and she’s pretty much my anchor to reality.  And when I say anchor, I mean it.

I’m this crazy impatient chick traveling at 88 miles per hour (the speed you need to reach the future, duh), and when I call her with my grand plans for next month, next year, or next decade she quickly drops anchor on my plans.  And it pisses me off every single time.  Because it’s the truth.

Mom’s common drop-anchor phrases
“Slow down!”
“Breathe!”
“You’re going to burn yourself out!
“You know, the girls aren’t going to be little forever.”
“20 years isn’t as long as you think.”
“Everything is temporary.” (January 2013’s theme…a coincidence, I think not)

Our phone conversations normally end shortly after she drops-anchor on me because I’m mad that she’s right but I refuse to acknowledge the validity of what she’s saying.  I mean, who does she think she is?  Doesn’t she understand that life is going to pass me by and I won’t get my to-do list done and… oh wait.  Life is going to pass me by.  Damn.  She was right.  Again.  So I call her back, apologize to her for being a pain in the ass for 32 years and promise to slow things down enough to embrace my now.

Whether you believe in New Year’s resolutions, or are looking for a fresh start and mantra for 2015, I invite you to join me in finding ways to Embrace Your Now.  After all, 2016 will be here before you know it.

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