Friday, November 9, 2012

Great Expectations

Are you - like me - an expert in identifying your many different character flaws and failings ?

Lately I've been troubled by my tendency to come up with great ideas - a new blog, a business, a study plan, a hobby - and be completely full of enthusiasm for, oh, a week or two at least! The morning always comes when I wake up to what seemed so fabulous yesterday and so deadening and undesirable today.

Maybe all those seeds of loving kindness my meditation teacher has been assuring the class we are planting are starting to sprout and unfurl, because I caught myself this week giving myself a hard time over the latest 'failed' plan. And instead of putting the mental energy into a mental self-flagellation session, thought long and hard about the things to which I remain committed.

My relationship with my partner. You don't make it to 17 years without a huge dose of tenacity.

My parenting. I put a huge amount of physical and emotional energy into parenting my three. It's done for love but it's sometimes work. I don't claim to get it right...I do know I've worked hard at educating myself and behaving as a parent for over 15 years. That's commitment.

Home education. This is the baby of the 'big' projects, at only a decade! Still, I think 10 years and counting is evidence of a certain kind of stickability.

Books, words and writing. Not just reading! Sharing - a love of literature, of communication, of the written and spoken word. I do this through reading aloud, through choosing great books for my children, through six years of running homeschool book clubs. Through sharing book recommendations, through buying books. Through writing and through modelling writing to my children. Through believing that writers do valuable work.

Like many introverts, I don't have an extreme social life! I do however have several key friendships, most of which have developed over the time I've been a mother, which I value and try my best to honour and grow.

Most of the time I cook pretty much from scratch. We don't follow any extreme eating patterns. although I am mostly vegetarian again for the first time since Lucy was born, but I put work into my part of the food preparation to have a somewhat healthy and balanced diet for us all. Thankfully, it's never been only on my shoulders.

Tutoring is a small part of my week, but it's been ongoing now for the last two years. It's another way of sharing the enthusiasm I have for words and for putting words together in ways that communicate ideas effectively. It's a small way of bringing some income into the family.

The newest additions to my stable of things I do reliably and with tenacity are meditation and exercise. At meditation, I'm a beginner, and learning how to make peace with being a beginner. With exercise, I'm learning how to sweat :)


That's a lot to fit in to a 24 hour day. No wonder the ideas I have for other things, enticing as they seem, don't get a lot of oxygen right now.

My children are getting older, but my youngest is only eight. There's enough to be going on with for now.


What are your great achievements ? And do you focus on those things you are already doing well and reliably, or do you also get caught up in how you measure up to self-expectation ?


  1. That IS a lot to fit into one day.

    I've been other things, that some people might consider more "exciting" than what I do now,
    but they are wrong.

    Now, I too put the most of my efforts
    into the same things you mention -
    my family - good food, exercise, and education,
    and I have never felt more satisfied :)

    Love this post!

  2. Mommy, you have to do a another post. maybe about how great i am.

  3. nooooo it are my cookie