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I am a terrible juggler

standard October 21, 2016 Leave a response

Like most moms, I wear a lot of hats.

Wife. Mom. School volunteer. Family organizer/manager.

Like every mom who also has to bring home a paycheck, I wear even more hats on top of those.

Since I freelance, those hats, on any given day are doubled, tripled, and sometimes quadrupled depending on what I’ve agreed to take on.

I currently have two regular clients, one project I’m co-founding, and one on-again-off-again client.

So, yeah, a lot of hats.

And a nearly unmanageable amount of chaos.

Which I hate.

Because I hate disappointing people or not delivering what I’ve promised.

I keep trying to juggle everything I’ve got going on. Keep trying to stay on top of the requests, demands, deliverables. Keep trying to remember it all, keep it all straight, keep every ball in the air.

And, for the most part, I manage. No, the juggling isn’t gorgeous. Sometimes balls get snagged out of the air just before they hit the ground, sometimes two balls get caught at the same time, some balls don’t get the attention they deserve, but it all happens.

Until something happens to upset the balance and then it all goes to hell.

Two weeks ago, I switched phones. From an Android to an iPhone.

You’d think that would be fine, but, as it turns out, I rely on my phone rather heavily and having to change operating systems threw me.

My calendar got messed up.

The way my emails are sorted got changed.

The notifications are different and not as intuitive.

Tiny things. Big repercussions.

I scheduled an event on Yom Kippur.

I dropped the ball on a volunteer thing that will affect a bunch of people.

I forgot to calendar a meeting with someone at school and only realized I was missing it when I was already 15 minutes late.

I didn’t check the date that my sister had said she’d come see C in her play and told her to come on a day C isn’t performing.

Not one of those things is groundbreaking or disastrous. No loss of limb. No blood. No death.

But they’re adding up.

They’re adding up to me feeling out of control and with each ball that gets dropped I feel less capable of keeping the others in the air.

I feel the need to press pause. To breathe. Ground myself. Pick the balls up one by one again and start fresh.

But I can’t. Too many balls still soaring and needing to be caught and thrown back up.

So this is my truth today:

I’m juggling a lot of balls. Each one really, truly important to me.

And I feel terrible that I’m doing a terrible job of it. But I’m not going to stop trying.

This little block crafted by Robin Plemmons has sat on my desk for years. Maybe I should read it more often.

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