My computer just got back after a week in the shop with a stuttering hard drive. “It's the nature of electronics,” the tech shrugged. “There are weak points. When one fails, everything starts to fall apart.” I violently shook my head and clung to the no-longer-made 17-inch screen, insisting that he fix it.
That old lady is now blinking up at me, cozy in our collective position on the couch. The strong scent of urine and the guilty look on Some Boy's face tells me that our 3-year-old just peed on the cushion beneath him. No less than five laundry baskets litter the floor.
We've been traveling a lot, so things are crazy as ever. I insist on broadening the boys' world view. The truth is that lately, these adventures are an escape from tedium. They remind me that there are lakes and valleys and vistas beyond the scope of our four walls.
Tech trappings are my constant companions. Blogging and photography are passions, but they're also something of a crutch. They distract me from my own frenetic pace. Reflections of myself nag at the corner of my eye and I'm startled. It's not often that I take time to see ME.
This is a familiar feeling. When our other two children were about Minion's age, I recall reaching a similar point.
At least now, it doesn't feel inescapable.
This time around, though, I have tiny witnesses. It's easy to forget what kind of example I'm setting. Nate and I have the same all-in spirit, and the boys are starting to take after us. I see it in their anxious rebellion at bedtime. In their overwhelmed wails as they try to push the boundaries and resist the confines of a schedule.
Having a baby sure does a number on your lifestyle. It's inevitable that parents lose their grasp on the details of life. Bills pile up, lost amidst the vigorous bodies until something finally crashes in; The tipping point of disorganization. Anthem had a security breach in the midst of our recent chaos, and it was nearly enough to push me over the edge.
“Cyber attackers executed a sophisticated attack to gain unauthorized access…”
We used to be customers of Anthem Blue Cross, so our data was among the information released. Again.
Fortunately, this time, we have Lifelock #BreachProtection in place. A lifesaver for these times when I simply can't handle one more task, someone is on the alert for us. Their system is looking for evidence that our Social Security numbers have been misused. It's one of the most damaging forms of identity theft as any action associated with that number can impact a person's entire universe: criminal files, education and work background, credit checks and more. There are numerous agencies and companies to check in with for years to come, as criminals sit on data for long periods of time.
It's a relief to have peace in this arena as I rush to tend to other fires. My computer, my children, the taxes, business, bills. I'm slowly learning to back off and delegate things to agencies like Lifelock so I can restore balance in our day-to-day existence.
Stillness and peace are things that I've only recently become familiar with. Accepting tranquility as anything but the calm before a storm is difficult for me, but I'm realizing the importance of prioritizing these tasks. Without leaving room for self-reflection, how can I ever care for those around me?
Slowly, we're shifting our days. I make sure the boys see me tending to details so they know that this lifestyle requires diligent organization. Growing up with a “what next” mentality isn't what I want for them. Excitement for the world? Yes. Beyond that, though, I hope to instill in them a respect for hard work and a diligent sense of protection towards their own inner calm.