Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The Power in Planning

Have you ever felt as if life was completely out of control and you're holding on by a thread? You have these people in your Facebook feed. It seems like one bad thing after another seems to happen to them and you don't understand why. I'm not one of them, I can't be.

In the chaos that it called life, I am The Planner. While we figure out what the next year is going to bring to us, I'm planning for all possible scenarios. Staying home and living life day after day is the easy one. Jose goes to work, I go to work, the kids go to school, and life passes us by.

Wait, what?!?!

I am not going to let life pass us by any more! This might just be fine and dandy for everyone else but I really feel like life is passing us by while we sit here and wait for something to happen. Erika is a middle schooler now and thus our day starts every morning at 6:30am. It means she has to go to bed at 8pm and our time together is reduced to two hours after I get home from work in which we also have to eat dinner, do homework, and get ready to do it all over again tomorrow. I never planned for her to attend middle school. This is her choice. This is Erika having a say about what she wants to do and I'm letting her. Do I think it will be short term? Absolutely but at least she knows that she gave it a try and it wasn't the right thing for us.

Mia is a first grader now and she loves school most days. Are there things wrong with elementary school? Absolutely!! Will the benefits outweigh the negatives for her? I believe they will. She loves her teacher, she hates how the behavior of others in her class equates out to her losing out on reading time as well she should but she is reading so much every single day and I love to see that light bulb pop when she figures out a new word. Mia is exactly where she needs to be right now and we are going to take it one year at a time for her. By the time Mia reaches middle school, Erika will be finishing up high school and we'll be able to focus on helping both of them with their educations. Mia doesn't know what she wants to be when she grows up and that's perfectly fine. I'm still trying to figure that out myself.

I'm a planner, a maker of a million lists, with a hundred reminders set up in my phone to keep on track with everything that is going and so I don't forget the little stuff like going to bed at a decent hour or picking up the kids from school. I don't know how much relates to my PTSD and what is just old age but I struggle with the little stuff the older I get. Yesterday I was driving to pick up Jose and by the time I reached the traffic signal, I had forgotten where I was going and went the wrong way. It's frustrating because then I feel like I'm out of control and it usually triggers an anxiety attack. I try to use the GPS on my phone as much as possible to help me get from Point A to Point B. The sad part is that I actually do completely fine when I'm in a new place and don't know the layout but if I'm on familiar ground, I make one wrong turn after another.

In order for something to happen in my life, I have to plan it. My bucket lists are my hopes, dreams, and goals all rolled up into one plan. I'm a visual planner too, I like to see my lists, carry them around, jot down things, and add little graphics to it.

Right now that is being materialized in my smash book

Adding all the little bits and pieces of my dream
I must confess that this is my first time making an actual smash book. Normally I use a traditional paper journal and just write down everything that comes to mind. This is more than a simple vacation though, it's another international move and this time to a country that we've never been to. To me, information is power and I must be in control. There are so many things to prepare for with this program as well so I'm trying to get ahead of the curve now. I have yet to read about anyone else in the program ever going as a family of four! By the time I reach the point of Spain or Bust 2015, this little smash journal should be completely filled with my dream.

How do you plan? How involved do you get with making your dreams come true? Are you a do-or-die planner too?

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