(I posted this a number of years ago but I could have written it this winter because we’ve had a lot of snow this month.)
We are getting hammered with snow here in Michigan, over a foot within twenty-hours.
The snow is so heavy the pine trees that border our house on three sides look like they’ve been frosted with the most beautiful white frosting ever. They are almost bent over to the ground. the patio lights that border a path in my garden are completely covered but the light shines up through the snow as if it’s a sheet of gauze.
It’s all so breathtakingly beautiful.
I like getting snowed in (as long as I have everything I need to cook, bake, etc). I find snowy days like this empower me to think better. Of course, it could be because I couldn’t go anywhere. I like sipping my hot tea and sitting in my “prayer” chair and just think.
I try to avoid introspection, however.
Today I thought about some people in my life for whom I’m their major source of comfort, advice, and encouragement. Their needs are as individual as they are so I respond to each of them accordingly.
Sometimes though, their “neediness” overwhelms me, not because I resent it but because I can’t always help. So today I prioritized who needed me the most during the next few weeks. (That can change tomorrow, of course.)
I didn’t prioritize according to their issues but by their support system. If they have a support system in addition to me, I can back off a little. (I hope that makes sense.) It might seem “cold” but I had to. Here’s why.
There’s only one of me. My hubby has to remind me of that often. I easily forget that I don’t have as much stamina and emotional energy as I think I do, especially when they all need me at the same time. That ultimately (with the adults anyway) the buck, so to speak, stops with them. By that, I mean that as with all people, we can only do so much. At a certain point, they have to pick up the ball and run.
Besides, if I’m going to be available for them in the long run, I have to pace myself.
It really helped me analyze their individual circumstances to determine how to divide my time. I know there will be days I will still try to meet everyone’s needs all at the same time as I suffer from “knight on a white horse” syndrome.
But that’s o.k. I believe we’re on this earth to help each other. Besides, there might come a time when I’m not needed and I’ll just bet that will be even harder for me.
I’ll end this short post with something I try to always remember. I can’t quote the source because I don’t know who it is, but here goes.
“Do as much as you can,
for as many people as you can,
in as many ways as you can,
for as long as you can.”
(A postscript. I read these last few lines and I want you to know that not having my mother need me anymore is even harder. I didn’t realize how I need to be needed.)
- Snowy day on the Moors (amyorangejuice.wordpress.com)