All in my quest to stay active and healthy both physically and mentally, I’ve been calendar-driven and goal-focused to the max. It’s not only friends and family who can’t believe how full my days are; I, too, wonder how I’ll get through most everything on my list. I mentally check off everything a week contains: a writing-critique group meeting, dog classes, 2 clay classes, photography club, calling (and maybe trying to get over to see) my parents. The list goes on and on. But then I take a deep breath and think, So what if not everything gets done? It’s working on the process that counts, and whatever goals and tasks haven’t been “checked off” should be worthy of my continued attention over a longer period of time.
So I am left wondering about the “whys” of overfilling my lists each day, week, month. There’s no doubt that keeping busy staves off overeating and my fears about the future. But then I take another look, noting that most of my activities are fun. Meaningful, too. Staying so busy, keeping my daily life brimming with learning opportunities and connections with others makes me happy. Provides a road toward new skills, some laughter along the way, and anticipating new challenges with more zest than trepidation.
But I know, too, that building in some give time is essential. “Give time” . . . as in giving meaningful time to connect to others, and allowing myself time to reflect, to revamp direction and some of my efforts, where necessary. Thus comes the big question on how to manage adding too much: 2 new writing groups; 5 dog classes; a multitude of springtime dog trials and shows; 1 new mentor photography group filled with amazing women and potential friends; weekly visits with one dog to hospice patients; all important, rewarding, and somewhat altruistic, right?
So why the nagging? Why do I still find myself struggling with how to embed the highest priority item of exercise into my routine: walking every day, for instance, or exercising somewhere–anywhere!–to manage my blood sugars, keep my heart healthy, and help my body and mind stay strong after so many years of living with Type 1 diabetes. So I’m struggling, realizing that the 3-4x I’ve committed to x-c skiing and snowshoeing every winter month–for me an extraordinary commitment–are still not enough.
How much IS enough? Am I being too hard on myself? Or do I reluctantly realize that the Number One priority of physically taking care of yourself every single day when you live with diabetes cannot have much “give” to it month after month, year after year? So many of us can rationalize this issue by saying: both physical and mental nourishment go hand-in-hand. One is void without the other. But I sure wish–I think I wish–I knew the answer!
Until next time. B well, b happy, Kath