Life is messy and full of difficulties. There are good things you can’t always be present for, bad things you can’t always avoid, not enough sleep when you need it, too much time-suck temptation when you finally could be sleeping, things falling apart that you don’t know how to fix, and the things that you can fix depend on if you have the right tool or the money. It keeps things interesting, and I’d really hate for life to be boring, but it is also a drain on my mind and energy.
I’ve found my own version of therapy to be volunteering at the local library once in a while, putting books away that have been returned. It is soothing to me that there is no doubt about where things go. You look at the numbers and letters on the sticker, put it in it’s place, and move on to the next. I feel accomplished, and in a few minutes, I’ve helped make someone else’s day a little easier.
I wish more of life were like that. I wish that all of the messes were properly labelled, could just be sorted out to the right shelves, and then you move on. But my life’s problems are rarely that simple to organize. My life’s problems are usually the things I don’t have the right tool, enough money, or the know-how to sort out. So, things pile up. Things that started out only a little bigger than me become nightmarish mountains before I can ever get to them. So, for one afternoon each week, I’m lost in the heaven of problem solving and seeing progress.
Today at the library was a bigger project than normal and I saw SO. MUCH. PROGRESS. Now I’m home and thinking about too many things that are showing no progress. Why can’t the kitchen drain issue be fixed already without requiring more of me than I can give it right now? Why can’t I have enough money to not have to choose between that thing I really want to do and the thing that I really need to do? Why does this opportunity that I want and need to take have to mean sacrificing a little of something that means so much to me? That’s actually a new one for me. I’ve had so little going on in my life besides problems for years, and now opportunities are happening, too? Changes are good. Challenges are good. Even problems are good. But there are actually so many of them coming at me from so many different directions right now that I can’t quite keep up with what shelf they all need to go on.
I’m trying to take life one day at a time, yet I’m so hungry for the next chapter that I forget to take into account all of the chaotic transitions that have to occur. I’m well aware of the big things that may change, but the little things are tripping me up and making the big things hard to focus on. I’m probably the equivalent of my youngest niece who just started walking. I’ve been stationary for a long time and now I’m not. I’m wobbly and excited, but I’m also in for a lot of skinned knees and bruised palms from all the falling down I’m going to do. Still, I know that one day I’ll look back and see that the chaos has settled and become more normal, the problems and things needing fixed will have found a way to work out, the decisions will be made, the sleep will be mostly forfeited, and it will all have been worth it. In the meantime, when I can’t quite catch a glimpse of measurable progress in my life, I’m just going to need a lot of therapy sessions at the library to make life seem a little less messy.