Monday, September 13, 2010

Change Management


There are days, oh so many days, that I place my hands near my temples and drag them down my face, wishing for a dictionary to fall out of the sky. Yes – a dictionary. (Ok, that and perhaps a money tree and a cute pair of heels). To which I would then flip to the “M” section and search for my very own name. Here, I would find “Megan” and discover clean, neat bullets underneath, defining my personality, my day-to-day and my fate line by line in a simple, meaningful way I could understand. A definition so complete that, when I find myself doubting who I was, who I am and who I will be, could serve as the magic genie that would help pave the way. A book with such magical fine ink that would give me the confidence, know-how and faith to appreciate the woman I was going to become in each of life’s amazing moments.

Now, you’d think at 30, I’d have figured this out by now. In fact, you always hear women running around talking about this decade and beyond, ranting how they “found themselves” and felt “comfortable in their own skin” and “finally knew what they liked.” Lies, I tell you. Lies. Ok, maybe not, but if this is the case, I’m falling sadly behind, in one area particularly:

Materialism.

Blech – just typing it makes me ashamed.

You see, the hubby and I are on a quest to simplify, which not only includes de-cluttering the impossible house, but also returning to our Dave Ramsey roots. By simplifying, we hope to reach a more Zen-like state, focus on what matters (like our little family) and create open hearts and minds that have more energy to be positive and give back. Oh, and to do the little task of saving for braces, college, to support a growing family and not have to go into panic mode when the AC stops working…

Yeah…this goal does NOT fit in with my general habitus. A.t. a.l.l.

For me, I am what I have. It comes from a long, sick line of baggage and confidence issues that I won't bore you with as I'm sure you're due for your own time on the couch. My perception is what gets me noticed is not the smile on my face, the friend I am, the Mom I try to be or the work I put in on the job or at home. It’s not that I remember to call on your birthday, plan a celebration in your honor or help you when you’re at your lowest. It’s not the hand-written note, the holding of your hand or the ride when your car is in the shop. It’s the Coach handbag, the Nordstrom clothes, the glittery top and the latest nail color. Strip that all away, and to be blatantly honest…I’m not sure of who I am at all.

Now, for those of you who know me really well, you understand the above paragraph is only true at a certain level, but this whole stripping down in life thing? Is really, really scary.

Will the girls still call on a Saturday night, even when I’ve had to turn them down a few times because it wasn’t in the budget? Will anyone notice if I’m in the same tees and jeans each week so I can send my kid to the best pre-school? What kind of first impression will I make without the perfect gear? What will I talk about if not the latest fashions? Will I still be any fun if it’s water at wine night versus the real deal? What will my family eat now that I have to actually prepare nutritious foods for them? Without “stuff,” how will we preserve our memories and keep the love alive?

Even typing it, it all so selfish and silly. After reading that you probably want to just give me a swift kick in the ass. Or even call me a selfish b*tch – who knows. And please, don’t get me wrong – I’m grateful for every little bite I take, the roof over my head, the threads on my back, the luxury of a car to drive to my amazing career. But even a gal who seems to have it all has to stop and think: it’s too much – I get it.

But who will I be without?

I can’t even comprehend or quite honestly imagine what it’s like to really struggle – how I got dealt such a blessed hand in life I’ll never really know. But I’ll keep being appreciative and grateful for it each and every waking moment and be humbled by the fact it could change on a dime.

And in the meantime, I’d love to know if you’ve stripped down or dealt with change to spare some change. What did you discover and what became of your life and love because of it? What was your long-term change management plan and its results?

1 comment:

Team Choate, aka Megs said...

From Susan:
Megan - you absolutely get noticed for the smile on your face! And you should check out this book: Simple Living: One Couple's Search for a Better Life by Frank Levering and Wanda Urbanska. It's an interesting look at an LA couple changing things up.