Monday, November 30, 2015

Mindful on a Monday

The transition back to work today was a bit jarring after 4 whole days at home, and it made me think.  Or perhaps I just happened to listen to the right podcast (Tara Brach) and read the relevant blog post (Raptitude) today.  But I am feeling oddly bittersweet and emotional about . . . well, everything.

I find myself thinking in contrasts:

I don't want Cameron to grow up because he is JUST SO CUTE AND SWEET right now // It will be so much fun when the kids are older and we can do more things together 

I wish I had another day off with the kids today // I am glad to be busy at work and am excited to get back into my work routine

I want to get to work on time! // I am having such a nice time listening to this podcast in my car, even though I am stuck in traffic.

-- and I can think of dozens more.

It's amazing how many of these sorts of thoughts pop up, and yet NONE OF THEM EVEN REALLY MATTER.  I mean, I can't stop time.  I cannot responsibly take an impromptu vacation day.  I cannot control traffic.  Or patient no-shows.  Or the weather.  Or politics.  Or most things, really*.

Today I still had these thoughts, but spent a little time just sort of noticing that I was having them.  It definitely gave me a perspective that I do not usually have.  

As Tara Brach reminded me this morning, I can ask myself at any given moment:  Can this be enough?  And the answer is always yes.  I can relax into the traffic jam, or the toddler meltdowns.  I can settle in and just watch things unfold without being wedded to any particular outcome.  This doesn't mean a passive life -- I can still plan for things, get things done, move forward.  I am still going to work hard and do the best I can with my family, at work, and in life.  But I can consciously let go of the things that aren't up to me anyway and settle into what is.

* Not everything, though.  I can choose how to spend free time, to an extent, and which projects to pursue and who to connect with, etc.  This would probably make an interesting thing to write/think about in itself.