In the immortal words of Cartman, “Poor people… they tend to live in clusters.”
If I’m not careful, I can resemble that remark. Yes, I have a roof over my head, but my poverty mindset is always licking at my ears.
“I’ll never get a job that works for my skill set…” (Note: Highlites of skill set include being a six one white mom rapper and the ability to get life stories out of homeless people and Costco shoppers in five minutes or less. Sometimes four minutes if I’ve downed more than one coffee sample.)
“I’m a bad mom for not being able to suppress Stink’s tics after all this time…” (Note: The whole ‘I can cure Tourettes thing?’ That’s up there with my other skill set: Denial Clinging. I’m so good at it!)
“The credit cards… they are still not paid off.” (No comment)
“This friend cut me off… that family member is annoyed with me.” (The good news is I have more time for random strangers. Lucky!)
“Stink was bullied in school. Again.” (Hey, at least he’s not at private school. I’m sending him to public where he gets bullied for free. Win win!)
“Another temp interview today. But I can’t find my Social Security Card. So even if I get hired, I can’t work because I can’t prove I exist.” (If a woman blogs three days a week, but has no official paperwork from the government stating her official numbers, did it actually happen?)
This morning I got up at 5:30am to go running.
Like every morning, I aim to reverse my poverty mindset with one of abundance.
“Today I might not get a perfect job, but I can put myself one step closer to one that will put me one step closer to another which will put me one step closer to my dream job.” (Back in TV! Write that musical! And tap dance! Oh, that last one – I can do that for free at the YMCA beginning on Tuesdays. Who’s ready to “Put another nickel in… in the nickelodeon…!” Aging myself. Moving on. )
“I don’t have to be a perfect mom. THERE IS NO SUCH THING. Stink might tic, but he is confident and strong. Why not concentrate on that?” (It beats staring at his mom job bowl haircut. Seriously, Andrea, not good. Put the scissors down.)
“I can pay a minimal balance on my cards each month.” (Though what I really want to do is spend MORE money on things I can’t afford. Like a this $125 Cath Kidston backpack. To carry the scripts for the pilot that will be written after my book gets marketed and I finally remember to buy sandwich bags for the kids so they don’t go to school with their sandwiches wrapped in left over gluten free bread bags. Yup, I’m organized!)
“I can’t please the world. Apologize, let go and your real friends will remain.” (You know who you are. I love ya!)
Abundance! Grace! Forgiveness!
That’s what I’m aiming for! It’s only 7am! What can go wrong?
My daughter: “Mooooommmm… my alarm didn’t go off. I have to finish my homework and clean my room and I’ll never be ready for our walk to school.”
Me: (Annoyed as I watch her slowly eat cereal.)”Why didn’t you do it yesterday?”
My daughter: “I was making dinner for the family!”
Me: “That’s your chore for your allowance! You have to prioritize your time better!”
My daughter: (Now really crying) “I’m doing the best I can!”
Me: (Inside voice) “Me, too.” (Outside voice.) “I’ll help.”
But I don’t want to.I want to stew in my head and be hungry for things I can’t change. Poverty Mindset.
My daughter: “Okay.”
We’re now not walking to school. I can hear my son tick tick ticking in the room next door while I fold sheets for my daughter and she weeps in frustration. I am ready to join her but I don’t.
Because this is life on life’s terms. Abundant living requires abundant acceptance that sometimes things just don’t work as planned.
Me: “Pip, you know, you don’t have to be perfect. You just need to do what you can do for today. Be kind to yourself.”
Abundance! Grace! Forgiveness!
She’s not buying it. I get it. She will one day. So will I.
Me: “Want a hug?”
I walk toward the stairs. I hear Stink in the next room. Tic tic tic.
Me: “Hey, Stink, got a hug for your mom?”
Stink: “Of course!”
He is soon at my side in the hall way, moppy head buried in my shoulder. He’s so tall now, I can practically look him in the eye.
His hug is expansive. Wrapped in his 13 year old arms, I am no longer in a poverty mindset, poor and living in a cluster. I’m clustered in what I strive for most.
Abundance! Grace! Forgivness!
All this by 7:45
I can’t wait to see what 8am brings.
Until next time, may God grant you the serenity to accept the tics you cannot change, the courage to change the tics you can, and the wisdom to know the difference.