There are only so many hours in the day, and no matter how well we plan or organize ourselves, unexpected hurdles will eventually find a way to impede the path. We can only anticipate so much, and each of us can only pile our plates so high before the contents topple over and create a frustrating mess.
I had a different post planned for earlier this week, “Checking Our Perspective.” It didn’t make it. I had a draft, but I felt unsure about it—and then a few roadblocks got in the way of my being able to revisit it.
I work at my day job for an average of 45-50 hours each week, sometimes a little more. This blog is a passion project, but as it stands, I can only work on it during my spare time. Currently, I have an additional workload I’ve taken on during the weekends; it’s temporary, but it means I have no spare time unless I’m willing to compromise on my sleep. As luck would have it, I also needed to fill in for a coworker this week, adding a few more hours to my daily workload. I’m doing it happily, as this person would also cover me in a heartbeat, but the additional work ended up putting a massive dent in my carefully planned logistics.
“Checking Our Perspective” is going on the back burner. Even edited down, it delves too deeply into a few issues that might rub too many people the wrong way—and we just don’t know one another well enough to go there yet. “Shedding a Narcissist-Ex” is going to need to wait awhile too. I’d thought I was ready to share about that journey, but I am not. I learned some vital lessons from it, however, so it will remain floating in the queue.
I came to a slight breaking point yesterday. Just when I felt like my workload was going to topple all around me, my bathroom sink clogged. I’m talking a near-standstill. I tried to fish out the offending mass with a crochet hook, but that did nothing. I tried a plunger. Nada (save a lot of mucky water going everywhere). I began to fear I was going to have to get a plumber to look at the problem, and on top of the rest of my hectic schedule, the idea was overwhelming. My morning was half over, and I hadn’t been able to find the time yet simply to eat. It was that last straw on the camel’s back.
I’ll admit it, I cried for a few minutes.
But then I opted to leave the sink for an hour or so to drain, pushing myself to shift my focus back on work. I told myself, I can deal with this—one step at a time. I had to force myself to concentrate, but I was able to stay on task. I put some water on the stove to boil, hoping one last trick might fix my clogged sink, and then pushed through my morning tasks. I moved between work and the sink, hoping for the best but mentally preparing myself for the worst.
Two pots of boiling water later, I had the clog cleared.
At the end of the day, I patted myself on the back for working 11 hours and getting the sink cleared and cleaned (among one or two other tasks). I rewarded myself with some self-care: a long soak in a hot bath and extra meditation time. I made sure to take inventory of all I felt grateful for, and I emerged from my bath feeling both invigorated and relaxed.
Life is going to get in the way of itself every once in a while, but we can see either roadblocks or detours. Only one will keep us moving toward our goals. Remember, even tiny steps are better than none at all.