I once had a mentor tell me he was concerned about my ability to take it to the next level. “Every time you take a few steps forward, I see you take a step back,” he said to me.
I was crushed. Devastated, really. I had failed to be successful all the time, which I thought meant I was a failure all the time.
I know better now.
None of of us succeed consistently. Change is not a straight continuum - it’s a pendulum, swinging back and forth. Two steps forward, one step back.
It’s not realistic to think we can live in the rare air of the unknown all the time. Every once in a while we have to come back down to earth for oxygen and respite.
Don’t Quit. Rest.
I was reminded again tonight how important it is to give yourself grace when you can’t succeed all the time. The Mister and I have been working for two months to buy a house close to the SheHive. I love my life as a mortgage-free Detroiter, but I hate the constant drive from the east side to everywhere I have needed to be for the past three years more.
It’s hard to secure a contract for a home in Ferndale - it’s one of the most competitive markets out there. We were outbid or beat to the punch more times than I care to recount. We finally found a house, only to discover that as hard as the home-shopping process was, getting clearance to close on our mortgage was even harder. Especially being self-employed for the better part of three years.
For a month now, every time we are told that we’re all set to move forward, a faceless underwriter from some far-off land has thrown a new hurdle our way. I cringe every time my phone dings, fully expecting it will be a text from our mortgage broker’s assistant asking for our taxes for the fifth time, my husband’s latest pay stub, a letter guaranteeing I won’t make him pay back the money I put in our joint banking account or a blood oath that we will sacrifice our first born to the mortgage gods if they give us a loan for which they’ve fully acknowledged we have more than enough income to pay back. (Sorry, Aleah, it’s been a good run…)
It’s been weeks of ups and downs. We’re both mentally exhausted from the constant stress and uncertainty.
We were finally set to close on Friday, only to receive a request at the close of business on Thursday for a set of documents that I have no ability to produce. “I give up,” I said to my husband and promptly went to bed - at five thirty in the afternoon.
I woke up a few hours later with fresh eyes and a new perspective. I’m not quite ready to throw in the towel - I still have a little fight left in me. I spent the rest of the evening digging up what I could, scanning endless pages of tax returns from years so long ago I don’t even remember them, sending emails and making phone calls. I don’t know if it’s going to work, but I do know I’ve done all I can.
When you get tired, learn to rest, not to quit.
Lovely, do you need a rest? If so, take it. I’m grating permission if you won’t give it to yourself.
With much love and gratitude,
Ursula Adams, MSPOD
5/31/2019 11:53:59 am
5/31/2019 12:06:29 pm
Thank you, Kathy!
5/31/2019 02:16:52 pm
It's possible this is a lesson I've learned through life with chronic illness but rest > quitting. Always and forever. I feel like I live in an endless roller coaster of things that would drive the average person mad when dealing with doctors, hospitals, insurance, etc. Add on the physical shit that happens and I've wanted to give up about eleventythousand times.
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