Monday, May 27, 2013

Advice For When You Get Bad News

Inspired by Angelina Jolie and on my doctor's insistence, I scheduled a mammogram last week.  A day later I got a callback that I needed to come in for a follow-up ultra-sound because something "unusual" had been detected.  I was already working on a draft of these suggestions, so I was able to put them into practice before spiraling into my usual reaction where I am sure the worst is going to happen and then setting the funeral in motion.  Here is the list I came up with, compliments of the wisdom of ages:

It's not always bad news.  It's just news.  Bad is what you make it.  That's a judgment.

What starts off bad often turns into something good if you go with the flow.

Who knows where it will lead you: maybe down some very cool paths that you never would have discovered otherwise.

If you believe things happen for a reason, it gives life a lot more purpose.  Choose to believe it.

Question the validity of your news.  Is it really true or are you exaggerating it or its repercussions?  Think of the worst case scenario and think about what you would do under those circumstances.  Then think about the best case outcome.  Visualize having the best case outcome, but know what you are going to do if the worst happens.

Don't live in denial, but don't live in your imagined apocalyptic future, either.  You are right here right now.  Try to stay here.  Be present: you heaven and your hell are being played out in each breath you take.

Is it even YOUR news to take on?  Byron Katie says something to the effect of: there are only three kinds of business: your business, other's business and God's business.  Is it's not your business, stay out of it.  You've got enough on your own plate.

Are you going to even remember/be thinking about this five years from now?  How about a year?  A month?  How about a week?  If you won't be, just do what needs to be done and move on.  Don't overreact.  Being a drama queen seldom helps anything.  I should know.

"Is anybody dead?  Is anybody missing a limb?  Good: we can start from there."

Profoundly uttered by the Delta Airlines man to me after I caused our whole family to miss an international flight home.  It all worked out in the end with minimal disruption.  The same goes for my breasts.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Putting the To-Do List Aside

"Let's not work; let's play instead."

I've got a list up to my cleavage of things to get done (including this blog), but I've decided that for tonight I'm going to ignore the vast majority of them.  In fact, after I post this shortish blog, I am going to turn my computer off for the night.  The only condition on which I will turn it on again will to be watch Portlandia or Parenthood or Scandal on Netflix.

Blog aside, my other obligations I shall meet are reading with my kiddos, tucking them in bed, and spending a nice chunk of time with that sweet chunk (Oops, I mean hunk) of a man I call my husband.

I'm blessed.  I love my life.  I love my family.  I love my job.  Sometimes it all seems like too much, but a bit of perspective helps with that.  My "too much" is somebody else's idea of paradise.

So what doesn't need to get done, won't.  Nobody's going to get hurt; nobody's going to judge me; nobody's going to even notice: except for me.  And I've decided that just for tonight, I'm not going to care.

That's my new start for today: to give myself a break once in a while.  Like I said, I love what I do, but sometimes I just do a bit too much of it.