Whatever You Do Today

Every once in while, as you bob and weave through the blogosphere, you read something and think, Yes! Exactly! and Thank you! That’s why I read blogs, and – truthfully – why I write one. Because sometimes we (the readers, the writers) find each other on just the right day. Today’s guest post was one of those. Amy sent it to me on a day I was busy lugging around a load of disappointment in… myself. I read her words and the negative internal dialogue went poof!

I’m excited to host Amy here today. We met first on Twitter when I stalked wrote to say I loved her book, and have since had the chance to hang out a couple times. This is the truth: Amy’s every bit as fabulous in person as she is on the page (or screen). She’s the real deal, people. And I’m thankful I know her.

With that, here’s today’s guest post…

***

I’m just dipping my toe in the Pinterest waters these days. I’m not sure that I really need another social media garden to tend, but it’s calling to me, and I’ve been lurking a bit, searching, not knowing what I’m even looking for. Sometimes life is like that.

And then I saw this:

And the gift of that statement socked me right in the solar plexus, taking my breath away.

What if, at the end of today, I didn’t look back and castigate myself for the things I didn’t get done?

What if, at the end of today, I don’t hate myself because, after twenty minutes of my child shrieking at me, I shrieked back?

What if my second book, my screenplay, my blog, all my writing that fills up my time without my children and fulfills my need to create, could bring me joy without a sense of obligation? What if I could think to myself “Lucky me! I got twenty minutes to write today!” rather than “Twenty minutes? And you call yourself a writer?”

If any of us are ever going to get anything done besides being a mother, if we are to create at all, we need what Martha Graham called

a queer, divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us
marching and makes us more alive than the others.

But the world won’t end if I don’t get to the gym this week, if I order pizza for dinner, if the speech I’m giving in March goes untouched for one more day, if I am a mother and writer and woman who is less than perfect. For my work, I need the blessed unrest that keeps me marching. But for my husband, my family, my life, I need to let whatever I do today be enough.

I wonder…

:: Why is this a lesson so hard for many of us to learn?
:: Do we as women and mothers have a harder time with this than men do?
:: And is that fault in the stars, or in ourselves?

***

About the Writer:

Amy Wilson blogs at whendidigetlikethis.com. She is the author of When Did I Get Like This? The Screamer, The Worrier, The Dinosaur-Chicken-Nugget Buyer, and Other Mothers I Swore I’d Never Be  and the play Mother Load.  This spring, she is directing the New York City premiere of Listen To Your Mother. Join the When Did I Get Like This? Facebook page or follow Amy on Twitter.

13 Comments

  1. I think that as women and mothers we are naturally hard on ourselves. Maybe we feel that we have to do everything and get it all done perfectly. I’m not sure, but I do like the image and what you say…. I can let things go once in a while and the world won’t come crashing down around me.
    Jackie´s last [type] ..Listable Life ~ 5 Moments

  2. Amen! Geesh – it sounds so lovely and simple. My advice: stay away from Pinterest if you hope to accomplish this goal. I swear Pinterest turned me into a crazy woman for the entire week leading up to Valentines. I just could not leave well enough alone!!!
    Amy ~ Eat. Live. Laugh. Shop.´s last [type] ..Memories captured.

    • Amy-ha! Maybe one should stay on Pinterest just long enough to be truly and deeply inspired. But only once. and then quickly close the browser.

  3. Missy, I think you must already know (from my tweet this morning) how much I needed to read this post.

    Amy, Clearly you live in my head. Which is an achievement since it’s very crowded in there. And I think getting 20 minutes of writing done in such cramped quarters is downright heroic.

    Thank you for sharing such a beautiful quotation…and I promise to try to think of the unrest that keeps me marching forward as a blessing.

    I am alive, that’s for sure. And sometimes messy.
    But better this, I suppose, than sterile and lifeless.
    julie gardner´s last [type] ..Today call me unromantic

  4. I don’t know why it’s so hard for me to let what I CAN do be enough. Sometimes I think I’m not working hard enough because I don’t have a perfectly clean house, the laundry’s not all folded, and our meals aren’t all completely planned from now until the end of time. Surely I should be staying up until the wee hours of the morning to make sure it all gets done, right? Because that’s what everyone does, right?

    Nope. They’re all just like me, struggling to fit it all, including sleep, in a 24 hour period. My husband would never stress over these things, so yes, I think we as women are the main carriers of these burdens, even if only in our own heads.
    Leigh Ann´s last [type] ..Things I do to avoid doing what I’m supposed to do

  5. After the post I just wrote today, I needed this. Thank you.

  6. Oh YES! I could not agree more. I try to tell myself that “good enough” is ENOUGH daily. Thanks for sharing!

  7. oh, this is a good one for me.

    I think that as women, mothers, even though we have men, husbands that are helpful – we do put that on us. that need to do it all. i know mr. kiss can do it. well. may not be ‘my’ way, but it’s done. so i need to just let it be.

    still working on the whole ‘good enough’ thing, though. not gonna lie.
    mommakiss´s last [type] ..Friday Flip Offs 7-15

  8. I’ve struggled with this all my life. I’m a perfectionist and nothing is ever good enough. When I became a mom it only tripled.
    I’m learing though.
    It’s taking its sweet time but I’m learning to realize that as a Mom the most important thing is giving them love…sometimes water and food.
    Great post.

  9. Katie Berube /

    #1: Amy rules. I secretly think we would be BFFs if I lived in NYC.
    #2: My mantra – and I’m not kidding when I say that I say it to myself several times a day – is this:

    You are Enough
    You do Enough
    You have Enough

    This, along with deeeeeeep breaths, gets me through.

  10. Thank you! I needed to hear that today : )

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. let whatever you do today be enough - [...] have a guest post today on my friend Missy’s blog Wonder, Friend. Please check it out. Follow her blog, ...
  2. Friday Features | Manifest the week | sunnysideup - [...] post from Amy Wilson on Missy's blog, Wonder Friend, about making whatever you do today be enough.  As a woman ...

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