Digging Out , Part 2

Last week, I thought I was all dug out—from snow, from work, and from personal stuff that kept happening. But I guess the thing about digging out is that there can always be another storm just over the horizon. Because on Tuesday (my birthday), I got hit by an avalanche.

I woke up to a family medical emergency that caused me to spend most of the day in the emergency room. I also spent two nights at the hospital, feeling grateful that they allow family members to stay overnight in a patient’s room. And I’m deeply grateful that the crisis has passed and things look OK.

I’d originally planned to use my birthday as a day to reevaluate the promises I made to myself at the start of the New Year. Two months down the road, another milestone—it seemed like a good time to take stock. To tell the truth, I didn’t think I was doing very well keeping my self-promises and meeting my goals. But sitting in the emergency room, it didn’t matter so much. Don’t get me wrong—I’m all for goal setting, and I intend to get back to that. If I don’t have goals to work toward, I end up drifting from day to day without getting all that much done.

But there’s nothing like a sudden crisis to throw you into a different perspective. Things that seemed to matter a lot the day before just disappear. They’re still there, and they’ll matter again, but I can see them in a different context now. I have a tendency to let small things inflate, until they take on an importance that’s way out of proportion to reality. So I’ve been thinking about what really matters to me. Those are the things I want to emphasize in my life.

Now, I’m behind again at work and will spend the weekend getting caught up (digging out again!). Then I’ll go back and look at those goals and promises I wrote down in January. I think the most important promise I can make to myself (and I don’t remember whether I wrote this down at the beginning of the year) is to take time to appreciate the good things that I have in my life right now. That appreciation is another thing I’ll be digging out—and I’m not going to let it get buried again by overinflated problems and worries and responsibilities that, in the larger scheme of things, don’t really matter all that much. I don’t want to look back in regret at something I’ve lost. I want to appreciate what I’ve got while I have it.

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About nancyholzner


5 responses to “Digging Out , Part 2

  • Moonsanity

    First, there has got to be something in the air this week. I have read of several of us having rough weeks. I’ve been there on spending time in the ER and know how rough it is. I’m sorry you had to go through it and hope all is well now. I think you are right about small things building up and seeming SO important until something happens to make us step back and really look at things. I remember when my husband had a mild heart attack it was one of those moments. He’s fine and has been for years now, but it was scary and really made me look at my life. {{HUGS}}

    • nancyholzner

      Thanks, Brenda, for your thoughts. (And for the belated birthday wishes as well–I think I’ll plan something fun for next weekend, after I’m caught up with work again.)

      It’s amazing, isn’t it, how one event can throw everything into such a sharply different perspective? On Wednesday, I managed to get away from the hospital for a couple of hours to go home, shower, and take a walk. During the walk, I kept thinking about the last time I’d taken a walk, the things that had occupied my mind then, and they seemed so insignificant I wondered why I’d thought about them at all. Of course, I realize that’s also the stuff of life — the moment-to-moment experience of other people and the world — but it was also a reminder not to let such things get out of proportion. So, for a while anyway, I’m paying more attention to what I give my thoughts and my energy to.

      Thanks for the hugs. 🙂 And I’m glad to hear your own scare turned out OK.

  • Moonsanity

    Ooops, forgot to wish you a belated happy birthday!

  • Deborah Blake

    One of my goals this year was to work on the balance between work and play–to reach for joy in all aspects of my life.

    So far, I’m doing prettty well, but I do remind myself every day of how lucky I am to have most of what I need and much of what I want.

    Going back to digging out myself, since the big news from last week sort of stunned me into immobility for a bit 🙂

    • nancyholzner

      Hi Deborah,

      I think that’s an excellent goal. In fact, I think I could just about scratch all of my other goals in favor of that one. And your big news definitely deserved some processing time. So happy for you! 😀

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