It is amazing what happens when the mind is set on growth. Chemically the brain changes and anything that isn’t aligned with what the goal is falls away; like the wolf, it’s the hunter’s mentality if we want to continue the analogy. The focus is complete and intense and singular. Our body becomes capable of doing things we didn’t think we could. We are more tolerant of the little things that may normally annoy us, because now it is a means to an end instead of the end of the world. We become different people when we let the bullshit fall away.
We’ve just spent the last week packing up our old home, closing on a new home, and moving into a new space. Even though we are only a few blocks away from our old home, this is an entirely different lifestyle for us. We have the space we’ve always talked about having for where we currently are and for anything we may need in the future. Our son has all the room he could possibly want to play and build and learn—and there are a ton of kids around his age to interact with. Our dog can run as wild as she wants to. The cats can spread out and find new nooks and crannies to play in. And we have set up a place to host and hold our family for the future if anyone needs it—parents, siblings. It is honestly more than what we could have hoped for and I don’t intend to waste the opportunity.
This move has taught me a ton about myself as we worked through this change. First, I had to learn to hustle—like really physically hustle. I had been packing up and moving things practically on my own for the previous few weeks so I thought I was moving—I was dead wrong. The actual signing on the house went incredibly smoothly. I made the mistake of commenting on it and anticipating the other shoe to drop. Drop it did. By the time we were done signing and going back to the old place to finish our clean out, we received word that we needed to be out of our place in the next hour and 45 minutes. I felt the fires of hell light up beneath me as I repeatedly ran up and down the stairs bringing down last minute stuff, cleaning out the fridge, coordinating between the old house and the new house. I thought I was going to die—but I did it. Over the next few days as we loaded and unloaded all of our crap (more on that) I pushed more than I had in years. It hurt at first but after a few days it actually felt incredible. I was lifting and moving things I didn’t think I could.
Second: following up on feeling good with movement, is accountability. I know it feels good to move, I know it’s good for my body. And it wasn’t that I was making excuses because I would always try to get some movement, but I didn’t do nearly as much as I was capable of. Through what I’ve had to do over the last few days, I see that I was half-assing what I was doing. What I previously thought was enough was no where near the capacity of what I was able to do. I really surprised myself with it and it was even more surprising how good it felt. I have been sleeping a thousand times better and I am more able to focus and I have a better recovery and ability to get back into it after.
Third: the actual integration of adaptability. We had to pivot what we were doing hundreds of times over the last few days, often on a dime. At first, I bitched about it as I tried to maintain control over the situation. I had a plan, damn it, and it was going to work! But as time went on and we had to shift, I slowly felt myself going with it. The point of moving to a new house was to allow for new experiences, not to judge them in the same way I previously did. Not to collapse myself into the victim mentality and whine about what wasn’t. We have been so fortunate with what we have that there is no room to complain about how it goes down.
Fourth: putting things in perspective. At one point we had to help my dad move some things out of his office (they are currently closing) so we could pick up a few more things for our place and my aunt was there. She made a comment about my weight that normally would have set me off. Initially I felt myself feeling hurt—I haven’t seen her in a few years and one of the first things she says to me is about my appearance. Within seconds I thought to myself that she is going through a lot of changes as well and she is struggling to let go. I have a lot of good things going on in my life so why let one comment ruin that? There is no need to make someone else’s cruel comment your truth and I wasn’t going to make that mine. Plus I know with all of the work we have done over the last few days that I am physically improving anyway.
Fifth: flexibility and when to stick with what you say. I realize that I haven’t been as good to my word as I would like when it comes to my son. I have a tendency to give in and allow him to do what he wants because he never asks for a lot—he likes to play, he has my tendency to want to complete collections, and he likes to watch some TV. It has created a bit of a spoiled child because he is used to being able to do what he wants and he is used to getting what he wants when he wants it. We haven’t been able to play as much because we’ve been moving but he met a little neighbor boy and he’s been wanting to play with him all the time. It has been great that he gets to interact with kids and at first I was limiting it because I couldn’t be there to supervise. But one of the kids made a comment that he could watch him and I realized that my kid can definitely be a bit more independent than I’ve allowed. I mean, he’s four so I’m not talking about letting him ride off with the older kids, but he is able to play outside in the yard with the other kids for a while. As we were moving boxes upon boxes of toys I realized that I haven’t made my kid do enough—I always do things for him. He threw a fit when I asked him to help and I knew in that instant that I need to do that more often. It’s my job to teach him how to function, not to do things for him. He’s going to be miserable for a bit, but that is growth, right?
The most important thing I’ve learned is that we can all do things we don’t think we can whether we are 4 or 84. It’s all about your mindset. That is THE most critical thing. How you approach the situation is more important than what the situation actually is. Sometimes we know these things logically but actually putting them into practice is entirely different. Our old mindsets creep in, often before we can even get in front of it. With determination and focus—and sometimes just sheer will—we are able to shift what the world looks like to us. We can always surprise ourselves—I know I did.