It is OK for the glass to be half-empty sometimes

I don’t know where the last week has gone. It is a semi-blur as I look back. Last week was a very EMOTIONAL week to say the least. I was basically strapped on a roller coaster for seven days and BAM now here I am back at the beginning…

My mom is my rock. She is my constant in life. In a world that I feel will conditionally love you (the world and PEOPLE)…she is the one who has taught me that I can call at any hour and say ANYthing I want and feel anything I feel and she just LOVES me more because I show up and show her that I trust her and am vulnerable and am a beautiful messy human and then she makes me laugh and ALWAYS says the right thing. What is it about mothers…they ALWAYS say the right thing. And it is always profound. Or funny. Or loving. Depending on the situation and need. Basically what I am saying is that my mom choses me. Every.Damn.Time. In any state. At any time. In any condition. The past few years I have learned more about being a mother from her unconditional love for me than I previously learned in my almost 7 years of being a mom myself.

The advice MOM gave me this week was this:

“That has to be a magnificent feeling to recognize. Once the glass is empty, there are so many other fluids to fill it with” (insert a lot of water emojis…Mom’s emoji game is on point!)

The reason Mom rocked this advice is because sometimes that glass isn’t half full and sometimes we are NOT negative people for saying that glass is half empty. Sometimes the glass really IS half empty. Or just simply empty. Or broken. Or we take the half empty glass and toss it on the ground and now we have a mess of half full liquid and glass to figure out how to clean up and we need to buy a new damn glass.

YES…yes…yes…We should always be thankful for what we have. Truth. Humility. BUT another “Momism” is this:

Just because you have no shoes and the guy over there has no feet…It doesn’t mean that having no shoes doesn’t suck too. 

Sometimes life is half full or all the way full. My point being that the highs and lows are OK. People who are ALWAYS happy and positive kind of scare me. Because I used to be (or portray) to be one of them and I know what darkness was looming behind the scenes. I would rather people see the ups and the downs and know they aren’t alone and what they feel is normal and that saying out loud that hard times just plain SUCK doesn’t mean I will look at them and say…Wow…I need to keep distance…That negativity is too much. There is such thing as negative behaviors that can bring you down in relationships and those I hope you have the courage to let go of, BUT having a bad day or bad week or going through heartbreak, grief, trauma, addiction, healing, divorce, infertility, mental illness, physical illness, death…ect…ect…ect… ARE LIFE TYPE OF THINGS….and we should be open and BRAVE enough to share our emotions and experiences because guess what else Mom taught me…

You aint the first person to ever feel what you are feeling. LIFE is universal if you haven’t noticed and as much as it FEELS like you are the only one to ever experience heartbreak for example…I promise you over in Siberia there is another man/woman who is feeling the SAME emotions as you…different situations but same emotions.

So there is no need to cover up or feel shamed for FEELING. This is LIFE. And a life without feeling is a life that is lifeless.

So through my own week…my children being sick and feeling the intense emotions and physical responsibility of taking care of them alone (can I just mention…NEVER…and I mean NEVER google…children.headache.fever…because you will find so many reasons why your child is dying that you will start bawling and start packing them up to go to the ER and then on the way they feel better and want a milkshake and to go to the park…because that is how kids roll…deathly ill one moment and the next they are jumping off the couches leaving you in a pile of confusion and emotional exhaustion because you just diagnosed them from google…just never google when sick…especially when it’s your kids!) I also experienced setback for training and feel intently not ready for this upcoming race…So much of me wanted to pull out and part still does but that is for a different post (and I am not pulling out)…Heartache came in a lot of forms this week.

So as I look back at Mom’s originally statement…the glass was emptied for sure this week on a lot of levels.  Perhaps it is constantly being emptied and refilled. It is the cycle of life…rainy seasons and dry seasons…

I chose to refill it this week through the people I love.

I relied on Mom for advice. I laughed and cried to her. We shared stories of service and love.

I drew on Bob’s happiness. He has seen some of the ups and downs I have recently been going through and he always sends me the perfect emails at the perfect times. He makes me laugh and is CONSTANT encouragement.

I loved on my kids and spent time with my neighborhood. I have amazing neighbors and we talk everything from life and love to beer to Survivor.

I spent an evening enjoying Tacos and Margaritas with my friend and laughing and plotting races. It is amazing how the Universe brings new special friends into your life at the most random times.

I reconnected with a friend I hadn’t heard from in years. I initially reached out to give her encouragement but in a weird turn of events she brought me more happiness and encouragement than I could have ever given her…in my mind at least.

I stopped to have a long chat with a girlfriend who I have known here in Chicago for 11 years. We were friends before children and raised our babies in the city together and now her family moved out here by me and we go to the same gym. The world is small. She brings me happiness whenever I see her because it is an intensely REAL relationship and we can just laugh about all the craziness of motherhood and LIFE without superficial BS “chatter”.

I saw my best friend, Liz, multiple times this weekend and she always makes me feel peace…and I laugh until I cry…and learn about amazing new lipstick colors…and she is fiercely on my side and yet is straight with me. She is my angel here…a very hot and beautiful angel!

So that is that…my liquid…I love my people. I am learning to rely on people. I didn’t for so long. I wore my solo warrior badge of honor loud and proud. But here is what I learned. Life isn’t meant to battle through and LIVE alone. It is meant to be LOVED with others. The good and the not so good. Your tribe will be ever changing but some of the core people in your life will be there forever. Be vulnerable and BRAVE and you will attract more love into your life than you can even comprehend. Admit the lows and ride the highs.

Keep filling that cup of yours with all the beautiful liquids you can imagine. Because you are worth it.

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10 comments

  1. Jennifer says:

    Love this! Our moms always know the right things to say. I’ve been going through a really tough time – for me. For others, my tough time would be a walk in the park. Nothing in my life is THAT bad. But my mom told me it is still ok to feel sad, as long as I get up and keep going. Remember to be grateful, and in the end it will all come back around.

  2. Natalie says:

    Oh my goodness yes! I feel like I really needed this post – I can totally relate to that “strapped in a roller-coaster” feeling of last week… The pressure to always be positive no matter what, and the reality that sometimes that damn glass is empty!!! Your mama is so wise “so many other fluids to fill it [empty glass] with” Thank you for sharing! <3

    • YES! And that is ok! I like the concept of rainy seasons that fill the glass and dry seasons where maybe it just isn’t as full…but always having HOPE that the rainy season will come again. 🙂

  3. Julie says:

    I really appreciated this post. It all comes down to authenticity and wholeness. To live with authenticity and wholeness means we must experience both happiness and sadness. Personally, I think we put far too great an emphasis on happiness in our culture. I wish we placed more emphasis on wholeness. Okay, I’m starting to plagarize this quote by Hugh Mackay (which I think I’m going to make my family motto when I have kids so they learn that there’s a huge gamut of emotions and they’re allowed to express them appropriately).

    “I actually attack the concept of happiness. The idea that – I don’t mind people being happy – but the idea that everything we do is part of the pursuit of happiness seems to me a really dangerous idea and has led to a contemporary disease in Western society, which is fear of sadness. It’s a really odd thing that we’re now seeing people saying “write down 3 things that made you happy today before you go to sleep”, and “cheer up” and “happiness is our birthright” and so on. We’re kind of teaching our kids that happiness is the default position – it’s rubbish. Wholeness is what we ought to be striving for and part of that is sadness, disappointment, frustration, failure; all of those things which make us who we are. Happiness and victory and fulfillment are nice little things that also happen to us, but they don’t teach us much. Everyone says we grow through pain and then as soon as they experience pain they say “Quick! Move on! Cheer up!” I’d like just for a year to have a moratorium on the word “happiness” and to replace it with the word “wholeness”. Ask yourself “is this contributing to my wholeness?” and if you’re having a bad day, it is.”

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