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What's it going to take?

Thursday, October 07, 2010

The second part of that question should be - to stop making the same mistake and putting myself LAST? I'm borrowing the title of a song from a certain ding-bat pop star, but it's how I feel - Oops, I did it again! The past year since I've been here on Spark I've learned a great deal about myself. Some good and some frustrating. I keep asking myself WHY I keep making the same mistakes and putting myself last. It's been a habit since I was a teenager, but one that I really want to brake.

Since my MIL passed away in August, I haven't been on Spark. I thought that dealing with the mess we were left to deal with was a priority and that once things settled down I would be back. Dumb idea! The woman never threw a thing away and my DH and I have been clearing out YEARS of clutter. There are days that I feel totally overwhelmed by all of this. For the last two months we've spent our weekends working on her house - sorting, packing, cleaning, donating, and throwing away. The days I'm working at her house I'm so tired at the end of the day, the last thing I feel like doing when I get home is cook dinner. So we've had take out food followed by plopping our tired butts on the sofa. Another great idea! Besides feeling like a limp noodle, I've gained 10 pounds, which landed directly on my @ss! Hey, I can't change what I don't acknowledge!

The last few nights I've had a hard time falling asleep because the error of my ways finally sunk in. I ignored the hints in the previous weeks by doing what I've always done - ignore myself and push through it. Did I pay attention when I had a fever of 102.8 for three days and couldn't drag myself out of bed? Nope! Or how about when I lifted a heavy box at her house and pulled my back, which took a little over a week to get better? Nope again! My body was trying to tell me to take better care but I didn't listen. That was my first lesson, which I failed.

The next lesson involves my lazy-@ss SIL. When she was here for her mother's funeral we asked her if she was going to come back and help us clear out the house. Her reply was "no, I don't have the time", which caused my chin to hit the floor and my blood to boil. She went back to California and her life and left us to handle a mountain of paperwork and years of crap to get rid of BEFORE we could even sell my MIL's house. She has however 'found time' to call me EVERY week to ask WHEN she will get a check from her mother's trust and to tell me how busy she is getting ready for cruising on her boyfriend's boat for 1-3 YEARS! Yep, I'm still boiling! Last week I called her to bring her up to speed regarding my last appointment with our attorney, only to be told by her "that she doesn't have time because she's SO INSANELY BUSY that day and must leave for the gym and an appointment with her Dermatologist" - to get MORE Botox shot into her already frozen face!

The clincher was when my DH told me about his sister's postings on Facebook, saying that she was sitting in the spa at the gym because she needed to RELAX. Then she posted a picture of herself at the beach with a caption saying that she was spending the day 'relaxing' at the beach. I however spent that day sweating like some kind of farm animal at HER mother's house cleaning my now 10 lb heavier butt off! That did it, I felt like a fire-breathing dragon. I have been aggravated for weeks by her lack of responsibility and the feeling of being burdened by this mess which has been dumped upon us. Yes I've felt resentful over this, but my anger shifted towards myself as once again it dawned on me - I did it to myself! I'm not saying that my SIL's behavior of always putting herself first, without ANY regard for others is right, but it made me see that we were two opposite extremes, without balance.

The third lesson hit me while we were watching The Biggest Loser the other night. One of the contestants was thinking of leaving and Bob gave her some words of wisdom about putting herself last. At first I commented to my DH that she was foolish for even thinking of walking away from an opportunity to change her life. The next words out of my mouth were "OMG, how could I judge her when I've done the same thing"? Talk about foolish!

It's obvious to me that I'm still learning and that I have a way to go. I know that old habits are hard to break, but I'm ready to try! I keep a day planner with a list of things that I need to take care of, in order of importance. Why is it that my healthy meal planning, cardio, and weight training are NOT on my list? When did I decide that everything else was MORE important? This morning as I looked at my planner, I fought the urge to blow-off my workout because there was too much I needed to take care of. I put my sneaker on and jumped on my bike, followed by a healthy breakfast and Sparking. The only person that's telling me to put myself AFTER everything else - is ME! Enough already, I'm tired of repeating the same mistakes and I'm ready to learn from them. Stop being a self-sacrificing fool and find some balance - THAT's at the TOP of my new to-do list!!!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I just wanted to say that I can totally empathize you how you put yourself last. I started that as a child because of the kind of mother I had and I am still struggling with it at 46. Sometimes my 13 yr old son will say, "You need to do that for yourself Mom". Out of the mouths of babes!! I also had a sister like your sil and sometimes I wish I could be more self-centered but its not in me. emoticon You need to hear that more!
    2661 days ago
    Glad you are back and ready to move forward. emoticon
    2662 days ago
    I am soooo glad you're back! It's good to know you're holding your own. I know, it's rough right now, but just think of it this way. All this sparkling going on can't help but distract you from all the other upheaval going on!

    Have a good day!

    2663 days ago
    Hey Dor, glad you are back and pissed off.....seriously, you do your best self-reflection and reality checking when you are good and angry. I'm not surprised at all by any of this blog. I went through the exact same thing with my mother's things and my lame brother doing zero to help (same as when she was alive, and when she lay dying and he went off on a vacatation to France). I'm with NATF. Why are you doing all the digging out? Let her estate pay for somebody else to do it (guess it's a little late for that). You'll get yourself back on track, don't put yourself through any more anguish over this woman. Your revelation during the Biggest Loser was an AHA moment for your to live by. Time for Dor to start living again! Be well my dear and welcome back! emoticon emoticon
    2664 days ago
    Well I'd be lying if I said I was surprised about anything you wrote re: the MIL's piles of crap or the SIL's lack of interest in anything but the money. Are you able to have an estate sale? Get all of the paperwork out of the house and let people go through and make offers. An auctioneer can take care of it all.

    Now, get thee back to taking care of thyself and stop letting that woman rule you from the great beyond as well! Got it mamacita?
    2664 days ago
    Boy have I missed you. I have been so busy too and my Sparking has been sparse due to my job but I still have been keeping my eyes out for one of your blogs.

    We all fall into those traps of not putting ourselves 1st. I have been putting in a lot of 12 hour work days and it is killing me. If my freezer was not full of pre-planned meals from batch cooking on the weekend I would fall into the same boat. Trust me, coming home at 8 or 9 PM at night i am not in the mood to cook. I am forcing myself to keep up my fitness minutes because i know myself only too well. If i sleep in a little later rather than go to the gym and just go to the office I will let that become my new routine. I am forcing myself to get up before the crack of dawn to hit the gym.

    Don't beat yourself up - actually it is your SIL that needs a beating, but I digress. emoticon Just start all over again and make yourself a priority. So what if it takes you longer to complete the task of clearing out Vampira's belongings. She is no longer there and she doesn't need them. Don't put yourself on a time schedule dear SIL didn't.

    Take care of you! emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2664 days ago
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