Holy, that week went fast!! I am finally blogging it. This week was packed full of prior engagements, work, and pretty much all things time consuming. I felt like I could not catch my breath. Every time I thought I could slow down, I sped up again. I also found myself naturally falling asleep early, I listened to my body. I went to bed before midnight! Almost EVERY night! I also stepped back and re-assessed where my priorities needed to lie. I removed myself from some of the commitments that I had made. I resigned from some of the volunteer jobs I’d taken on, moved some of my clients around to give my kids a March Break with me, and through this I gained some perspective. I take on a lot of things because I love people, I love helping, and I love being involved. When I only think of what will serve everyone else though, I lose sight of what will serve my family, and my own health, in the most beneficial way. I am finding balance. This seems to always become more evident to me around the full moon (also known as menses time for me) when I just get overwhelmed and tired, find myself more acutely tuned to my body and my family. During this month of minimization, I am also becoming aware of minimizing commitments, activities and responsibilities. That is very difficult for me. Excess seems to be a thing that is entwined into my life: excess commitments, excess food, excess purchasing, excess possessions, excess in my social commitments. Unfortunately I am finding this excess is leaving me with less; less time, less energy, less room, less money, less focus. Time to be mindful and pare it back. Find what brings me, and our family joy and keep that. Discard what keeps us too busy, or too exhausted, to truly enjoy the good.
This week Hubs and I had an appointment with Judy at Lighthouse Money Management here in Goderich. A friend of ours recommended we see Judy about our finances. We went on Wednesday. Judy was amazing. She set up a cash flow plan for us and walked us through it. The idea is not to have a restrictive budget or something telling you what to do, just to know exactly what you can spend on a weekly basis after first having met your bills and other financial goals. Our cash flow plan allows us $200 a week for “emotional” expenses. Emotional expenses are things that you usually buy because of emotions. Food, furniture, clothing, casual expenses. At the end of the week we get paid, take $200 out of the bank in cash and that is what we as a family have to spend on groceries, going out, clothing and entertainment. It sounds easy, but it scares the shit out of me. Considering I can easily spend $300 in groceries in one day, this seems very limiting. I just have to remember this is actually the opposite of limiting, it’s freeing. It is giving us money in the bank for when we really need it. I am going to have to learn to spend less than $100 a week on groceries. This is going to be interesting. She also said our chiropractor appointments and other appointments like hair and massage need to come out of this money. So goodbye services. Hubs thinks all of those are very unnecessary expenses and is not really down with our only spending money going to those things he deems unnecessary. I think we may have to figure out another way to pay for these since I feel they are important for our health and my mental health. Already we had a disagreement leaving the financial advisor’s office. Money is a tough issue!
Wednesday was International Women’s Day. It also happens to be my MIL’s birthday. It is very appropriate that such a strong, passionate, and diligent woman was born on a day set aside to celebrate women’s rights and freedoms, to bring light to the need for equality for all, and to reflect on how much further we have to go. My Hubs mother has stood for equality and is passionate about safe-guarding the rights of those most vulnerable in society. When we celebrate her on International Women’s Day every year I find it very fitting. Happy Birthday Momma T!!
On International Women’s Day I took my sons and nephew out of school and daycare a bit early, picked up my friend Paul, and headed to Bayfield to participate in a women’s march organized by some very strong, passionate women. It was a way to participate in the “A Day Without Women” movement, a very important and moving event. There were mothers, daughters, wives, girlfriends, grandmothers, aunts, sons, husbands, fathers, friends and neighbours all standing together in solidarity and speaking out with one voice. I was extremely proud participate in that event and to have attended, not with a van load of women, but with my sons, nephew, and good friend Paul. I attended a march for Women, an event celebrating feminism, with all males in my party. This was a big deal to me. Teaching my sons and nephew about the importance of equality, about why we have a day to mark Women’s liberty, and standing in solidarity with others who are standing for justice and equality, these are all things I feel blessed to do.
Today I am focusing on finishing sorting clothing and getting some extra stuff down to the basement for a garage sale in the Spring. Carting my old laundry system over to my SIL, dropping stuff off at goodwill and cooking up some yummy food. Maybe cleaning the fridge if I have time.
Wish me luck!!