Breathing with Self-Kindness
Not much has changed since last week with the exception that I’m physically feeling much better. Still not 100%, but definitely on the mend from whatever illness had me in its snare. However, the swirling continues, rather intensely. I’m working on accepting that I will likely feel swirly until all these deadlines hit. Rather than pushing against the stress and anxiety of all that is on my plate, I’m trying to take deep breaths, continue to work, and treat myself and look at myself with as much kindness as I can.
I have this image in my head – it’s actually a metaphor my graduate school mentor shared with me years ago – of a row of plates spinning on tall poles. Do you know what I’m talking about? You might see this “trick” at a circus or carnival. The person has about 10 poles set up vertically, and then she places a plate atop each pole and starts them spinning. To keep them all going, she has to continually run up and down the line of poles, keeping careful watch of plates that might be slowing down so that she can give them a gentle nudge to keep them spinning. If a plate stops spinning, it will fall and crash into a million pieces. My mentor told me that this image is what comes to mind when she is managing multiple projects and deadlines. And now, that’s what I’m thinking of…spinning plates, running up and down the line, giving a touch to the ones that look like they’re slowing down, and then checking on the others.
With my focus on spinning plates, I feel a bit out of touch, out of communication, out of the loop with friends and my community. I’ve hardly been on Twitter or Facebook these past couple of weeks, and I also have not been able to respond to emails, phone calls, or letters in my usually way. I don’t like this side of the spinning plates and the swirling very much, but I imagine this disconnection will persist for a few more weeks as I manage these work obligations. Know that I miss you all and send me good work vibes. Please.
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