I’m so glad that Jennifer is doing Seven Quick Takes this week because I have been so worried about her. She is still in my prayers, as are the Poppe family, Kelly from The Careless Catholic, and several of my close friends who have experienced terrible loss and suffering recently.
And now, uh, here’s my flippant blog post. It’s what I do.
1. Announcing: the nominees for Word of the Year.
Well…actually, I got nothin’.
Or, rather, I HAD nothin’. I kept reading all the cool kids, with their blogs, and their words, and all I felt was envy. I don’t NEED some stupid WORD I have lots of WORDS already and I have too many THINGS to be thinking about ANYWAY.
And then, because I am oblivious to the puns around me, I had an epiphany.
Yes. Limits. What a felicitous happening, that this word should spring into my brain just as I was beginning to give up hope. I mean, I could always make up another word for this year, but – no. This word felt right.
Then I did an image search on Morguefile for “limits” and realized: Oh. That is why it seemed so perfect.
2. Okay, so: fine. Sometimes I forget what my last name is. Maybe I’ll just continue this theme and choose “of light” or “skating” or “bump” as my word next year. But in the meantime, here are five reasons I like this word.
3. Overcommitments. It’s a congenital problem with me. I’ll never fully recover, but perhaps I can treat the symptoms. I can stop. raising. my. hand. to. volunteer. I think part of what’s happened is that there are a couple of activities in which my children participate that I really am not involved in at all – most notably, the arts immersion program they attend once a week, in another town (where my husband works, so he’s the one who knows the staff and the other kids). And I feel like all those people must think I’m a slacker, never showing up to help out unless I’m specifically asked to do so. I can’t be seen as a slacker mom.
Or maybe…it’s fine, really, and everyone is getting along just fine without my leadership, and I should enjoy my day “semi-off” with just my youngest. There are limits to how much outside stuff I can take on.
4. Time management. Totally related, this is a serious problem for me and I’m kind of getting fed up with myself. I’m always running late, mostly because I’m terrible at estimating how long it will take me to do something. “Limits” is like a brick wall standing in the way of me doing just-one-more-thing-before-we-head-out-the-door.
5. Goals. How I love goals. “Limits” here translates to “you cannot reasonably expect to achieve X if you do not stop doing Y.” Y usually means “staying up way too late working because I was so tired during the day I couldn’t really concentrate.” I mean, it’s not rocket science to figure out why that might be counterproductive. But just acknowledging – there are circumstances of my own creation in which I cannot do what it is that I want to do – this is a big thing for me. I’ve always been a “I don’t care what other people say, I can get this done if I put my mind to it” kind of person, which has definite benefits, but is becoming more self-destructive now that I’m not super young and really can’t do the all-nighter thing, at all.
6. Thunderstorms. There are limits to my moodiness. Sometimes – usually when tired and overcommited – I just get in such a funk. I get really mad at imaginary versions of people and inanimate objects that have wronged me (in semi-reality or possible futures), or I get really down, and I start thinking “this is how it will be now, for the rest of my life, this frustration.” Kind of like how I always assume a newborn who gets a runny nose must think, “dang, I guess this is going to be how my nose works for the rest of my life now. And things were going so well.” But then I get a dollop of grace plonked onto my head and I just feel – better. The hard times have their limits.
7. Calculus. I might have a kid taking this class in seven years or so, and I will need to brush up.
No, just kidding – threw that one in for my vast engineer readership.
I would love to know if you have a word for the year, especially if it involves a pun. And please head over to Jennifer Fulwiler’s to catch up on more quick takes!