Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Change is Hard

After a long day of doing pretty much nothing yesterday, I found myself lying in bed thinking how much I miss my days as a missionary. It was kind of a random thought. I mean, I've been home for over two years now and I'm quite settled into life, but there are just some aspects of life as a missionary that I started to really miss. So I started making a list in my head, trying to pinpoint what I missed that I could probably still have, even as a non-missionary. The list ended up being:

1. Getting up in the morning, praying, and getting right to exercising.
2. Having an hour after that to eat, get dressed, and get mentally prepared for the day.
3. Set time to study the scriptures and the feelings that come with that - invigoration, enlightenment, excitement, and the sort of indefinable feeling that my testimony was constantly growing.
4. A sense of purpose to my day.
5. Sharing the gospel. (You knew that had to come in there somewhere)

Then I started formulating a plan of how I could do those things.

A. I could get up about an hour earlier in the mornings and instead of having James bring me my laptop so I can start working in bed, I could get up, pray, and go turn on the wii fit. Exercise, check.
B. Even though I loved having that hour as a missionary, maybe I could cut it down to half an hour (that way I can still start work around the same time) - I can eat, shower, and get ready rather than having James bring me breakfast in bed and hanging out in my pajamas all day.
C. Put off starting work another 1/2 hour (I'm on flex time and I work from home, so this is all feasible) so I can study my scriptures. It's not the two hours of a missionary life, but it's something and I think it would bring a lot of those same feelings.
D. My fourth item on the list is a little bit more difficult to pinpoint, but I just think if I did more with my day than complete my work and then flail around on the internet trying to find something interesting to read or look at for hours on end I would feel more like I had a purpose and I would definitely feel more of a sense of accomplishment at the end of the day. There are so many things I want to do - sew, write, clean, get organized. If I just chose one of these things to do a day I think I would feel better about myself and my life. But I very often use the excuse of how sick I feel to just not do anything but sit on the couch and quietly lament the queasy state of my stomach and watch reruns of Friends. Anyway... moving on to the last one.
E. Our ward has invited us to participate in the set a date program. There, right there is one way I can get back into the gospel sharing mode.

So, Ha! I hatched this brilliant plan for how I was going to improve my self and my day. I had a plan. I set my alarm clock for 7:30 (not the hour I was planning, but you got to ease into these things sometimes) and snuggled happily into my covers. It was 11pm - I was going to get plenty of sleep and have plenty of energy the next morning to fulfill all my plans. Then it was 11:30. Then 12. 12:30. Ugh, I was still not asleep. I got up and wrote an article for an online magazine (we'll see if it gets published), went back to bed. 1:30. The last time I looked at the clock it was 2:00. I turned the alarm off. Ugh.

And so my day today started pretty much like every other, except that I slept in until 9 rather than 8. James brought me my Ovaltine (are you getting the impression from this post that I have the best husband in the world? because I do.) and here I am still in my pajamas, with my laptop, in my bed.

Basically, change is hard. But I'm not giving up. I'll try for the getting up early tomorrow, but even today - as soon as I finish this post, I'm going to go, get dressed, and try to salvage what I can of my plan. Because if I learned anything on my mission it's that even though change is hard, people do it. They really do it. And I can too.


Tracie said...

You've motivated me to start making changes too. :) I need to do most of these things too. (Though I never went on a mission.)

Heidi said...

I have a lot of those same feelings - where did my personal study go - does companionship study count as the replacement - thanks for the call to be better!

Evan and Holly said...

Can you salvage all of my days for me? I often, too, am in my pajamas until right before Evan gets home from work. I got in these lazy bad habits while I was pregnant and super sick and on bed rest. Then Kyle came and they tell you to sleep when the baby sleeps. I do that, but it means that when he is awake I am often holding him or playing with him and so nothing gets done. I've been coming to the realization that I need to make changes in my schedule too. Unfortunately, the same thing happens to me---he is either up more than usual, I can't sleep, I feel poorly, he's having a rough day, or some other excuse. So good for you, and thanks for the motivation. Because of you, the bed got made and the floors vacuumed. Keep us posted.

Christian and Jennifer said...

I meant to comment on this several days ago but didn't get a chance. Christian and I have been thinking th same thing . . . something's gotta change and we need to recapture that excitement for the gospel that we felt on our missions. Life gets complicated and busy, but if there is no room in there for scripture study and fervent prayer, then life becomes less meaningful and more stressful. I do so much better with patience and love for my kids when I've taken time to prepare myself before a day of chaotic toddler-dom. Thanks for your post and for inspiring me to do better, as well. I love you!

Buffy said...

I feel that way just about being home in general. The day just goes so much better when you can get up early and have a routine. Having said that, sometimes it is just too hard when you are pregnant or have a young baby--often routines can't even start back up again until a year post-partum when you start getting enough sleep again. Babies are so worth it though.