Sorry in advance for the random thought process. Sometimes you just need a good old fashioned mental purge, which can only occur after a healthy dose of meditation- preferably in a quiet place. I found mine in the middle of a field out in the boonies...
I suppose it's harmless enough. But does an 11 year old really need to be facebooking? I mean, I didn't even have a computer until my college days, and it was a word processor at best. Not to mention all the crazies and cyber bullies that are making headlines.
Then that's when he said it. "But mom, you have one. And you're popular. You even have a blog and an email and twitter." Little does he know I also have a blogfrog community and a new-to-me stumble upon account. Shh...
Just words, but they were words that stopped me in my tracks. Why was I feeling so defensive? Was it because I felt guilty of the time it took me away from my family? Or was it because I was in fact so completely not popular?
Don't get me wrong. I love the friendships and connections I've made in my virtual blogging, tweeting, facebooking, commenting, stumbling, blogfrogging, linking world. Unfortunately virtual hugs only go so far.
But those two words. Those two tiny harmless words from my 11 year old son made me realize that I'm only popular in a made-up world.
Thoughts started racing through my head. How often do I enjoy lunch with a friend? Or a night out with the girls? Or a double date? Or dinner guests?
Sadly enough, the answer is disturbing, especially of late.
As much as I have enjoyed interacting with so many of you, I think we can all agree that real life friends are of equal importance. And should possibly be even greater on the scale. Perhaps you were an easier, more comfortable fit, particularly in light of the recent less then perfect things unraveling in my life.
I spend plenty of time with my family and enjoy our moments together, but outside of that I have started to alienate others. Between club soccer, managing this household, dealing with HOA nightmares and short sale drama, hub's crazy schedule, pre and post school activities, and lest we forget-- BLOGGING... I have little time left to socialize outside of these 4 walls.
Plus, holidays are upon us, which I LOVE. And every year I vow to not let the crazy, commercialized ways of the world creep into my heart or mind, and yet somehow they always do. Eating up valuable minutes. And sucking the life right out of me.
And there is another biggie in my life right now. Something I've been debating whether or not to share publicly, but regardless it is there. And it reflects in so many of my thoughts and decisions on a daily basis. My son was recently diagnosed with non-verbal learning disorder (NVLD). It is a mild form of autism. I have known he was a little different for years now. Possibly dating back to tantrum throwing toddler days. And although I think he is a remarkable person- intelligent, witty, thoughtful, and passionate about life in general- he has challenges that not every child deals with. So, we are working hard to understand him better and teach him how to properly interact with the human race. I'm not sure I've been the best example of that lately. Hubs always says that we overcome weaknesses and phobias by doing. So, motherhood beckons me. My son needs me. (And if you read my bully post this might shed more light as to why it was so heart wrenching for me or why I'm not convinced homeschooling him is the best idea for either one of us.)
But I think it is time to stop hiding behind the fear of labels. Autism is becoming more of the norm than the exception these days. It appears to be almost as common today as any household cold. Ok, maybe that's a stretch. But you get the point. Unfortunately it has a much longer lifespan and there is no cough syrup or decongestant to mask the symptoms. There are no black and whites and triggers are as confusing as the disease itself. But speaking out about this will certainly open more doors and opportunities that will hopefully give way to a happier, normal, more productive life for him. Junior High is hard enough without added obstacles. He battles his own inner demons on a regular basis and I know that his life has not been easy. He has already defied so many statistical odds. Most children who have NVLD are unable to do any sports, yet Little Man excels at soccer. Just today he made 2 goals and had one assist. So, we have done all that we can to encourage this passion of his. And I couldn't be more proud of his achievements. I will continue to be his biggest advocate, whether it's bullies or his own inner demons, I will always be there helping him battle the bad guys. And cheering him on.
So, yes. Those sweet, innocent enough, heart tugging 2 words have given me just the push needed in my quest for balance.
So, I did the impossible. I pushed the delete button and emptied 1,000 emails. Talk about a virtual detox. I already feel lighter, like a giant weight has been lifted. I had no idea I was a virtual hoarder. I suppose I was holding on to those in the hope of finding time to respond. But let's be real. Time to wipe the slate clean and start anew. I've spent the better part of my life purging, decluttering, and keeping life around me perfectly manicured and organized. Those millions of words may not weigh anything in terms of pounds, but they can certainly bog us down just the same.
If there was something important that I missed please let me know or resend the info. Otherwise, I've set up a new strategy. I have organized different boxes to catch the important stuff and will be responding and deleting much more promptly. If I were really organized I'd have a separate email account for just my blogging, but truth be told I don't think I can deal with one more thing. Especially something that requires a new user name and password. Or number.
If you were to sit and tally the numbers that define you, would you be able to? Or have you lost track of them? I think I fall into that category. Just as the cyber world needed a detox, my head could certainly do without most of the junk that is taking up residence up there, particularly all those numbers... bank accounts, credit cards, passwords, SSNs and medical ID numbers for every family member, library numbers, insurance IDs, auto loan numbers, student loans, school lunch accts, not to mention phone numbers, house numbers, garage codes, or dates. The list is endless. Then there is a separate code for each and every account set up on the internet. Is it any wonder our brain short circuits from time to time? I miss the days that people just had names.
I am also working on streamlining my google reader. I recently learned that there are folders for categorizing. And I've been attempting to tweak it a bit. Any tips or hints?
I will also not be blogging on the weekends except for an occasional project 365 post. I will only be doing 2-4 posts per week. I will keep the Tasty Tuesdays and Wordless Wednesdays going for now and will only post others when I feel so inclined. Up until now I have always visited every single linkup. As much as I love it, there may be days that I won't make it to everyone's post. Some days allow for this, others don't. Life doesn't always go as planned. So, that's where I'm at now and I will reassess later.
I hope that we can still stay connected. I will spend an allotted amount of time visiting blogs and commenting. If you don't want to miss a post make sure to subscribe to my feedburner so that it will go straight to your email (located just under my photo to the right). You can also friend me on facebook. I tend to visit more of those that pop up in my status updates. Mostly because I can access it from my iphone.
But don't be alarmed if you don't see me around as much. I'm not going anywhere, I'm just scaling back in an attempt to find harmony and happiness in my life. To be the kind of wife, mother, and person I can be proud of.
I thank you for following my beautiful mess.