Saturday, September 18, 2010

Resolute or Inflexible?

I have these reasonably inflexible (perfectionist?) kids.  Come to think of it, Jaedon may not be inflexible because of autism, since in our family, we are scoring 5/5 for inflexibility.  Anyway, Simonne was illustrating a verse she had copied in her notebook, when she bent over her page, not seeing my recently placed coffee cup close by, and a few locks of hair got in the coffee.  She lifted her head quickly and some drops of coffee got on her page.  I could hear her response from the other room.  There was no consoling her.  I encouraged her to let the page dry (after blotting the excess coffee).  Sadness continued, because the now dry page was crinkly, not flat.  I couldn't rescue her, so I left it alone.  Later that evening, she brought the page to me.  "I finished it, Mommy!" she said, showing me the page.  She finished her illustration of the verse, coffee splashes and all.  I was extremely excited to see it.  She moved through, even though things hadn't gone exactly as she wanted.  I'm so glad she is learning this at 9...she has a few years on me.

Inflexible and resolute sound very similar.  Inflexible is when the resolution is getting in the way of where you want to be going.  I have created some resolutions around predictability in the past because they helped me feel safe.  However, insisting on predictability in the face of the varying things I don't control, was a recipe for insanity.  Now, I'm resolute about a particular outcome, but I'm learning flexibility about the particulars of getting there.  I am also flexible about my resolutions.  I give myself opportunities to change them.  So today, I set some resolutions/intentions for the day, inspired by a recent post.  Thinking back on the day, I'm certainly glad that I did!

It was the first day of a group meet-up my daughter attends.  We went to bed early (11 p.m.) so that we could wake up early (8 a.m.).  Everything was going smoothly until the neighbor rang the bell, letting us know that my van's window was down, and I should check to see if everything was ok.  I looked at the van for a few seconds wondering why the window was down.  Then, I realized: it's not my van!  It's my mother's.  We both drive grey minivans.  Mine is a Ford Windstar, hers a Dodge Caravan.  A quick look up and down the block helped me ascertain that the Ford was nowhere in sight.  It was now 9:55 a.m. and I was just getting ready to get my keys... my keys are missing from my key ring.

At about this point, I feel the tension in my shoulders.  Simonne needs to get to the Adventure Center in 30 minutes.  A quick call to my mother revealed the details.  Her car had a flat at 6:30 a.m. when she was leaving for work so she took mine and asked my brother to get the tire fixed so I could have the car.  I hurriedly called a cab to take Simonne to the meet-up, piled everyone into the cab, had it wait for us and hopped back in.   $25 dollars less, I'm back home thinking about my appointment in NJ that I needed to leave for in 30 minutes.  I'll spare you the details.  In an hour I was on my way, just to realize that I had no GPS charger, no phone charger, no IPhone to radio attachment, no EZPass!  They were all in my car.  Good thing I hadn't paid the babysitter.  I then had some money for tolls.
On the NJTPke, I remembered my intention to savor every moment.  That and my constant assertion that I'm flexible and can constantly figure out new ways to get what I want helped me to get to my appointment, have a great visit and return home (sans GPS!).  Sometime on my trip, while wondering if the tire would lose air again, I noticed a black strip of rubber flapping in the wind close to the windshield wipers.  This strip was attached to the windshield at the base.  I'm driving at 70 miles an hour and this strip is quite hefty.  I decided not to indulge in anxiety.  I stopped looking at it.

All in all, I had a good day.  It was like a day at the gym.  I had a good workout.  I stretched myself, and I can feel the effects, the slight soreness of the muscles, the good kind of tired.  Yet, It's great to get a good workout and see what you can now do, that you couldn't do before.  So, I will bend, I may even break, but I definitely won't stay the same.  I'll grow.

Be resolute about your flexibility today!

1 comment:

  1. Iris and I are laughing and smiling. Thank you Faith.


Read, smile, think and post a message to let us know how this article inspired you...