Be Prepared


So, Friday night, I was driving home in the rain after a dress rehearsal for an orchestra performance, and suddenly realized that I hadn’t written a blog for this week. Whoops!

I didn’t (totally) forget about y’all, I promise. The past few weeks — months, really, if I’m honest — have been very busy ones, between prepping for surgery (tomorrow!), completing major projects, prepping for both an orchestra performance and one of another organization’s major events for the year (on the same night, no less!), participating in National Novel Writing Month and declaring my 50K words on Thursday, and let’s not forget the not-so-little matter of my daughter, giving birth to our first grandson this past Monday. (That wasn’t necessarily a time vampire for me, since we were unable to be there for the birth, but she was constantly on my mind.)

I was a scout (Campfire Girl, Explorer Scout!), but I still like this pic, so there.

I know I’ve dragged out the how-much-my-life-has-changed trope quite a bit, but this was a shining example. I have been bouncing from one thing to the next and juggling an awful lot; sure, it’s stressful. But there was a time when I would have totally backed off on some of it, perhaps denying myself things I truly love (like making music), for the sake of meeting other obligations and not exhausting myself in the process. And I would have spent a lot of wasted time, worrying and fretting.

But this time, I will admit I overburdened myself intentionally. While I’m absolutely excited about getting my second knee replacement surgery done and in my rear view mirror, I’d be lying if I said I’m not at all nervous about it. I know things will go well; I know what I’m facing. After seeing my husband through two total knee replacements last year and having my first done in May of this year, this is nearly old hat — as much as any surgery can be. There’s just not a whole lot that we don’t already know; it’s just a matter of working my way through the stages of recovery.

But I also know me. Had I not planned on surgery right after major commitments (and honestly, I didn’t have much of a choice on dates without flipping into a new year and a new deductible to satisfy), I would have spent the last few days fretting. That’s my nature. Keeping busy (and happy, doing it) has kept me from obsessively worrying if I have everything covered. I can say with confidence that I do and that I’m ready for this particular challenge. Being ready and aware is a huge part of the battle.

The same thing has held true with my stages of progressing through weight loss and achieving health; I do on occasion experience the unknown, but knowing what’s ahead of me and how to handle it is a big tool in the arsenal. I think that’s important to considering this journey a success — and success is judged on a daily basis. I ate cookies last night; that didn’t nullify the five years of daily challenges that preceded it. It was a planned deviation, much like being aware that the next few weeks will disrupt weight loss. I recognize that I will make necessary concessions to achieve an end (get that nifty new knee in shape!) and that any gains I face will be history once I’m fully back on my feet.

So as I sit here this Sunday, working down my list of preparations and making sure I’m ready, I have to say how thankful I am to be at this point at all, how full my life is, and that I recognize that fullness came with hard work and dedication. It didn’t just happen; it took investing myself in my own success.

Mind you, I doubt I’ll be able to post a blog next week — it won’t be because I was too busy to write it, like this past week, but once I’m on the other side, the next step of my progress begins. And I am prepared.

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