We've been busy with birthday parties over here, one last night for my mom, as she turned 60 (and holding, as she likes to say) and one for our boys, because their birthdays are just two weeks apart. I've got some great photos for sharing here another day. Tonight I'm just too exhausted for the uploading.
In the past I handled the stress of having company, lots of company, and trying so hard to keep everything impossibly perfect, by drinking. Sometimes I'd drink sneakily, and sometimes I'd drink right after the sober company left, to cope with my insecurity and need to people please.
Without that option, I'm learning not only new ways of coping, but to accept and relax. To expect less of myself and simply live the moments, believing it's all good enough simply because my intentions are good, even if there's nothing close to perfect.
I cleaned, but not frantically. I asked for help and I took my time. I saw a friend and held her four-day-old baby for a very, very long and therapeutic amount of time when I could have been attending to party details. I really did, as they say, take one moment at a time. No fret, no fuss.
I believed my mom's gift was good enough, without trying to read her face for clues. I believe she loved it.
Today, for the boys' party, I wore my pink summer sweater with a belt that ties around the waist. The belt is always riding up too high, creating a grandmother-looking waistline. I forgot about it for most of the day today. I didn't care about my silly belt.
Our boys had cake and ice cream and they got to see almost all of their favorite people in the whole universe at one time. They had a water fight and they wrestled with Uncle K and giggled out the best kinds of sounds with their cousins.
And then later, when we were outside, with the party winding down, the clouds started rolling in. I had been taking photos of Asher with Uncle K and of cousins in trees like monkeys, and I looked up and I had to think of how big and vast the shockingly beautiful sky is. How it's like life, so full and changing and engulfing, and how we can miss the brilliance of the bigger picture if we're paying too much attention to the stressful details.
The bigger picture is a million tiny reasons not to drink. So I am the best kind of exhausted, and beyond grateful to have noticed the sky.
P.S. Asher has continued to say "I not have mine headache anymore, Mommy." That's my current favorite sentence, just so you know. Thank you, all of you, for your thoughts and prayers. Go team.
Oh. And I forgot. These are the last days to vote for BlogLuxe Awards (nominee button in sidebar). Please vote for Violence UnSilenced in the Most Inspiring category and for any other blog you'd like in the other categories, obviously. Thank you!