What are you up to this weekend?
I'm spending it in Colorado(!)
Thursday I kissed my husband, gave pets to everyone furry, and drove from Iowa to Fort Collins. Our neighbors have a condo there and share it with friends. So, for the next week, I'll be doing my favorite workout, going for walks at different parks, visiting new coffee shops, and re-finding my zen
After that, I'm heading to Billings, Montana, to visit my daughter and grandsons for a few days. Fall is my favorite time of year, this part of the world is beautiful, and I need some mental R&R
It all sounds so wonderful at the time. Yes, I'd love to join the community garden. Yes, I'd love to help a friend-of-a-friend. Yes, I'd love to sign up for classes. Yes, I'll lead the big project at work. Yes, let me help make your business a success. Yes, I'd love to help with the fundraiser. Yes, to the weekend getaway.
It all sounded perfect
Until it didn't sound perfect
The days grew fuller, and the nights grew longer. I wasn't sleeping, and work wasn't working. While my husband was kind enough to stay mum, he was starting to look at me like maybe my brain was on the fritz (ps: Quite honestly, I was too)
All of the things I'd circled on the calendar in bright colors, started to pale.
So I started doing the strong/not-strongest thing I knew how to do. I started canceling. Heartfelt emails and phone calls that told the truth. I couldn't muster the strength to show up
— — —
The truth is, these days I don't really want to to be strong anymore. I think that perhaps strong/not-strong is the sweet spot, the place where strong doesn't mean holding your breath and plowing through. Where being strong means, you'll certainly look weak while you're doing it
Kind of like pilates, where you move your leg just a little bit in one direction, how hard it hurts after just twenty seconds. “Never underestimate the power of your own body weight,” the instructor says. The class keeps moving. Amazed at how effortless it must look to an outsider, but how hard it is when you're doing it.
How weak it looks / how strong it is
Of course, everyone understands. They celebrate my honesty, and go forth with their weekend brunches, find other people to help with their projects, and share the spoils of the garden.
It wasn't until I had lunch with a friend. She encouraged me to keep going and applauded me for not making up an excuse to cover up the truth. I realized, yes. This is what we do, isn't it?
We make excuses, attempting to maintain the relationship, avoid hurt feelings, or just keep the peace. Sweep it under the rug. “We can't leave the puppies home alone” and “Work has been crazy” Or any other armor we're able to put on, helmets of excuses, shields of schedules
Sometimes we’re not even strong enough to muster an excuse. We push through and show up bruised heart, limp smile, and we come home feeling more battered than refreshed. Less rested, more frazzled. No good to the people we love, and certainly not to ourselves
I'm not the best at a lot of things. I'll never turn down a cheese plate if our neighbor makes his salsa I'll eat the whole thing (every time). I'll never be the friend who handcrafts you a bouquet of flowers. But I'm about to get really good at being strong / not-strong. After all ..
we should never underestimate the power of our own weight
Whatever you're up to this weekend, I hope it's a happy one. xo
(Featured image photo credit: Wikimedia – Mount Elbert as seen from Turquoise Lake, Colorado)
Friends and I took off to hit local craft fairs. Tonight out with hubby for dinner and a movie.
Quiet weekend at home because my students shared their stomach bug with me:( Sounds like a wonderful, beautiful weekend for you. I applaud you for saying no to the things that aren’t serving you right now.
I love this post so so much! I am so guilty of overdoing it with the volunteering and helping too. I need to find the strength to just say no some times.
I love this post so so much! I am so guilty of overdoing it with the volunteering and helping too. I need to find the strength to just say no some times.
Happy weekend! I have to say that I’ve actually been quite ‘selfish’ this summer. We’ve recently moved to Sardinia and I have thoroughly enjoyed lazing around for the last two months. On that note, I used to volunteer here at a local dog shelter and as actually planning on starting up again this fall!
I do love a road trip. We’ve made some great memories while on the road. It’s been a long time since we’ve planned one.
We spent the weekend in Madison, Wisconsin. The highlight was attending the Isthmus Oktobeerfest. Lots of fun and great road trip from Chicago.
I am definitely guilty of spreading myself thin like that as well. So many things sound appealing, then you’ve heaped up too much on your plate. Wishing you happiness soon!
I am so glad you are taking the time to do self care. And that you are honest enough with yourself and others about what you need.
I spent the weekend planning out my week, strategizing and such! I also took time to read and find awesome blogs, such as this one. Thanks for sharing this, it made my evening!
I love this, it’s such a good reminder to learn how to say no especially when you’re already too overworked to go and do the things they’re asking you to do! I hope you enjoy the week of R&R and come out feeling refreshe, rested and relaxed!
I hope you had a great weekend! I am in Denver Colorado – Colorado Native here!! 🙂 In my opinion, Colorado is the best. You got a little taste of cool fall here this weekend! So fun!! I hope you got a chance to relax and breathe!
Fall is my fav season too! I hope you have a great weekend. Thanks for sharing this!
Rightly said, these trips make more memories than staying home for a weekend or even reading a book! As long as you don’t keep coming up with new excuses for not travelling, you will enjoy every mile on the road!
I relate with you so much. It just so hard for me to say no or think of an excuse so I end up doing something that I’m forced to when I’m not actually being forced. :/
Seems like you had a busy one mentally as well as physically. I have to be the strong one in the relationship with certain things and sometimes you really do need a break from it all. I was working part of the weekend as always.
Wow, you hit the nail on the head. I can relate to everything you’ve mentioned, especially the making excuses part – I’ve most definitely used the “I can’t leave the puppies alone” one. And sometimes I push on through, forcing myself to smile and go out just to avoid disappointment. I’m still working on my strong / not strong sweet spot to this day.
So true, I feel exactly the same way. We had a quiet weekend together, the weather was quite nice yesterday so we had a day in the park. xx
Haha that little sketch is adorable and so true! Oh, you are in for a treat! Relaxing time is a must and it seems to me you will have an amazing time and I wish I were in your shoes! Have fun and enjoy your precious vacay days with your daughter and grandbabies!!!!
I hope you will enjoy the time spent in Colorado. Sometimes, we just need to take some time off just for ourselves. I have learned this the hard way during the past year. I can’t remember when was the last time when I actually felt relaxed. My health is bad, my mind is blurry and all over the place… so I said stop! I am taking time off. I am having my eat pray love moment so I’ve booked a month away, rented a room in a house on a remote hill in Tuscany, sorted out a motorino and I’m going to leave in solitude for a month, surrounded just by nature, to recover my strength.
I would love to visit Colorado someday. We just came back from Iowa. It felt like it took forever to get home and happiness was definitley the last ten miles until we saw our home. haha.
I spent my weekend working. LOL no fun I know! Would have much rather spend it in Colorado!
Oh hun 🙁 I am sorry to hear about your state of mind recently. But it is so true, we do make excuses or sometimes even when we turn up we are barely present . Sometimes its important to explain why you are cancelling on someone because they can take it personally. But we are only human after all. Hope you have a good time with your family x
My husband spent his college years in CO! My weekend was pretty good, my husband and I took the kids to the children museum.
I would love to visit Colorado one day due to its beautiful nature. I really love to spend weekend in quiet and relaxing manner. Near the sea or over the mountains that is my favorite thing to do. This weekend, I was busy in back to school activities with my children. Next weekend hopefully will sit near the waves.
Yes, it’s always a delicate balance, isn’t it? I overextend myself at times until it all catches up with me and then I have learned to do what you did, be honest and just opt out. Taking time to refresh is strength!
Ugh, I am the queen of making excuses. I take on too much and then end up regretting it. I need to just learn to say no or delegate more to begin with.
That’s so true, we pretend to make life merrier but there is so much inside it. There has been bouquets of shields, and we seem to be just lost. It was a lost weekend for me as well since we had some crucial decisions this week. Hope to unwind in next few weeks!
I miss the days I had too much to do, days where I could get up a go. I cooked a cheese sauce, some veg and pasta yesterday and it has worn me out, I don’t think I’ll leave the sofa today.
Have a blast in Colorado! We used to go to Fort Collins quite a bit when we lived in Wyoming. It’s such a pretty area.
Oh, and I’ll never turn down a cheese plate either 😉 So good.
Gorgeous pic. I’ve always wanted to visit Colorado and have a friend who just moved to Denver. I’ve actually never been to any of the NW area. On our list to see.
There is nothing wrong with being strong and “plowing through”, but sometimes strength comes from saying, “no”. I am still learning this lesson. Prioritize and do something every day that is just about you. Invest in yourself. We’re all in this together. I’m cheering for you and celebrating your strength–even in the “no”.
Taking off on a road trip is exciting and wonderful. Seems like everyone just wants to sleep and be cranky coming home. Especially the last ten miles. Doesn’t matter if they have something to watch or do.
I have lived my life being the “yes” person so I can relate. Here lately though, I’m saying no more and more. For no other reason than wanting to do things that interest me. I didn’t have an eventful weekend. I stayed home and crocheted on my chunky blanket. Boring, lol.
I have recently discovered the beauty of saying NO to things and I’ve never felt better! It is so freeing to only do things that I actually WANT to do.
I hope you have a lovely time and get some well deserved rest, I know when I burn out the best thing I can do is take a step back or go off grind for a minute.
Our weekend was amazing. We were returning from a weeklong cruise and as much as I enjoyed the getaway, I was beyond thrilled to return to the comforts of home.
I can think of a good number of times where I’ve been just too tired to offer an excuse. When I’m really fighting depression I just withdraw, which doesn’t help but makes it so there’s no excuses to have to give. It’s a vicious circle.
I just love this post. It speaks the truth, as a strong person usually does! Hope you come to peace within yourself and seek time for yourself.
My husband and I are always waiting for the busy-ness to slow down, but it never seems to do so. We’ve decided that it’s not going to unless we make changes. We do try to enjoy our weekends with the kids, though!
I did home projects all weekend. Its been such a long time since we took a fun road frip!
Heading to see Jurassic quest with the kids, I love Colorado, garden of the gods was one of my favorite things and of course cripple creek is amazing plus all of the mountains!
Lovely post, I felt the same last winter and there were points I didn’t know what to do anymore. It’s so hard to admit though! Hope all is good now and you’re feeling much happier Xx
I had such a relaxing weekend. It’s been a while since I enjoyed writing and strategic planning! I spent quality time with my girls and realized how grateful I am for simplicity!
Enjoy your Colorado trip and your visit to your daughter and grandchildren. You have so many schedules coming up andI am sure it will be a blast and don’t forget to take as many pictures as you can.
It is so easy to let all those obligations pile up on us. We had a great weekend just staying close to the house and playing lots of boardgames.
I’m glad you have such a great adventure in front of you. I could definitely use one of those getaway weekends myself. Between my job, working towards the promotion and my blog I feel like I am being stretched too thin sometimes. And then I end up not giving enough to people who need my attention. I don’t know. I have such mixed emotions about everything sometimes. What I have realized is the power of the word no. It sets my boundaries and allows me to make better and more honest decisions with people. Hopefully, I do not lie to people while telling them no, but know is so very important.
I see myself in your words. Being the eldest child, my siblings feel that it is my responsibility to look after everything, to be good at everything! I have my own family to attend to too. I can’t say “No” because I don’t want to hurt their feelings so I just take everything with a grain of salt.
What a great place to spend the weekend! I was born in Colorado, but we left when I was just around a month old, so obviously I don’t remember it. I would love to go back and see my birthplace. As far as scheduling all sorts of things that sound great at the time, but lose their luster as they get closer, I can totally relate. I have a hard time saying no to people, then I suffer mentally and physically as I try to give them everything and leave nothing for myself. I really need to find better balance.
It sounds like you had a pretty busy eventful weekend planned. Sometimes too many things pile up on my calendar and then I feel overwhelmed too. It can be okay to say NO – I’m still learning this lesson. And Ive had to cancel plans before too because I was too busy and stressed .
It sounds that you had a great weekend in Colorado. I’ve always wanted to visit Colorado. Hope next month with my loving daughters. I think this is the right place to unwind.
We love road tripping too the view is breath taking that looks like the mountain we saw in Pikes Peak. I love that area of Colorado wherever you go is picturesque.
We want to road trip to Colorado in January. My husband has his heart set on a New Years vacay. Our weekends are usually filled with soccer games and visiting grandparents.
I am the same way with saying yes to too much sometimes, it is so difficult to admit limitations when it comes to helping out. On another note, we love Colorado, every year we spend a few days there in the summer and love it. We drive from Wisconsin to California (where I am from) and we take a pit stop in Vail, enjoying a few days of fun outdoor activities in between the long drives.
I love Colorado. It’s so beautiful! My wife and I are the same way with everything always being so busy. It didn’t hit me until my oldest daughter started experiencing anxiety. She couldn’t put a finger on what was causing it, just kept saying “everything is going so fast”. In our world of 24/7 plugged in technology, it’s no wonder that we get burnt out. It’s nice when we are able to take a road trip and escape, no matter where we end up!
I hear you. I have to be strong every day as a working single mom. Frankly, it’s exhausting, and I would love to not be so strong all the time.
Road trips are so much fun, and as you mention, after a long road trip and you are heading towards home. The last few miles have a strange exhilaration.
Sometimes the other person you’re trying to make plans with probably doesn’t really want to have to spend that time with you. I mean, it’s always lovely to see friends but when someone visits, they’re usually on YOUR time which is not always convenient for that person so they can’t always say ‘no’ to you either. And sometimes you really have to just do what you did and have the time for you.
I hope you had a great time in Colorado! I heard Fort Collins has so many lakes! Anyway, we all need some time “off” the routine and reality to relax and unwind. To find ourselves. So I’m really glad you took a weekend off… Mental health is really important and we have to treat ourselves as well as we can!
I miss that roadtripping with my Amore, I think we should do it again 🙂
My weekend went fruitful – had finished my blog posts and scehduled it. Now am planning posts for the 2018!
I absolutely loved reading this! I try to take weekends off as well! Powering off and disconnecting is essential to our sanity ?