It is now mid-July. I skipped the last couple of weeks because my brain was a little fuzzy during the move, but we are through that now. The house is unpacked and ready to get back to business. All that paring down we did really paid off. Our new apartment is spacious and uncluttered.
I’m back to work now and Shaun is searching for his new job. Have you ever noticed how frustrating the unknown is? Job hunting seems to bring out all your insecurities. I went through it when I was looking for my job and now we’re going through it with him.
But back to this month’s goal- Meal planning and budgeting. The budget has been adjusted to stay within my income until Shaun finds a job. And I’ve gotten through my first grocery order and my first two meals this week.
Sticking strictly to the recipes from eMeals has helped a ton. When I tried to save money by replacing ingredients with cheaper options, I cost myself so much time and took away from the quality of the recipe. Dinner has been easier to get on the table and even allowed me to get the kids involved.
Life is weird without a packed schedule. I haven’t set an alarm in a couple of weeks and I’m not sure I’m going to start anytime soon. I’m still waking up naturally around 7:00, but allowing my body to wake up on it’s own makes a huge difference in my energy level and mood.
I’ve always wanted to have a really good routine and still want that, but I’m also enjoying just doing the next right thing knowing I have plenty of time to get everything done. I think I’ll eventually land somewhere in the middle of routine and chaos, but I’m going to slowly add to the routine over the next few months.
For one thing, Shaun’s work schedule will determine what a day looks like for all of us. As frustrating as the unknown is, there is something refreshing about just living each day without worrying about what time it is.
Today was a perfect example of the ups and downs that come with major life changes.
Down– Work was disappointing today. I’m figuring out all-new supply lines in a new city and today’s results were underwhelming.
Up– Shaun got a job as a delivery driver. It probably won’t be a life long career, but it’s a start.
Down– The power went out while I was preparing dinner and I had half-cooked chicken and no way to finish cooking it.
Up– We tried a new Tex Mex restaurant called Tijuana Flats that was amazing.
We rolled with the punches and just kept going. I’m calling dinner a win because I was sticking with the plan and the reason for eating out was beyond my control. In the end, everything worked out and we have some cushion in our budget for times when life gets in the way of planning.
I’m trying to see life as more of an adventure. Each day is exciting because it is unknown (not scary). I’ve spent my life trying to maintain constant control, but how much control do we really have over anything.
The truth is I’m only in control of myself- my thoughts, my feelings, my actions. That’s it. Even my family is really beyond my control. I can encourage, influence, and advice, but in the end, it’s up to them how to live.
How do we learn to let go? I’m finding deep breathes and taking a moment to consider the worse case scenario. Because usually the worst case isn’t that bad.
If my work numbers stay low, I can pick up my side hustle again. If food delivery doesn’t pay enough, we’ll cut back in another area. If the power goes out, you put the food in the fridge and finish it for dinner tomorrow making the next meal even easier.
So here’s to tomorrow’s adventure. It’s going to be great.
As I sit here cuddling with my kids at the end of the night, I remember why I wanted this life. Many of my lives decisions have been dictated for me. Not be my parents or by any specific person, but by expectation.
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized how seriously I took anyone telling me what I should do with my life. I can remember often being told I would marry a preacher when I grew up or that I would go to a certain college or that I would be the homeschooling, stay-at-home mom.
To be clear, I did all those things and regret none of them, but I often wonder if I did them because I was following sound advice or if I was trying to meet some perceived expectation that would validate my worth.
Now living in a city where I don’t know a soul, it’s weird to not have to live up to another’s ideas of what my life should look like. I don’t even want to change anything, but now I know why I make decisions because there is no outside influence.
None of us live in a vacuum. I will affect others around me and they will affect me. But moving here has reminded me of the importance of being aware of your own mind. So often we go through life on autopilot and then look back with regret and emptiness.
How much better would it be to make decisions with intention? Towards a bigger goal? Even if we made all the same decisions, we would know that we had been moving somewhere, working towards something, and seeing the growth in the journey.
Do you have an area you make decisions based on expectation? Are you following expectation blindly or using it as once source of advice, but making your own decision in the end.