Finding the North Star


This weekend I was kidnapped by a friend to spend a couple of days in her family cabin up in the mountains.  Being the first visit since last fall there was some cleaning to do and I thought I would take the time to do some mental cleaning during the activity.  I’ve been stuck for several months and frustrated because I am making no headway.

Hamster Wheels

I know we have all felt this way at one time or another.  We run and run and run doing all the right things but we get nowhere.  I don’t even lose weight!  Man that is frustrating.  Anyway, I’ve been running on this wheel and struggling with will power, self-control and focus.  I’ve been working on my success “to do” list but I’m nowhere nearer my goals than I was six months ago.

My Plate is Full

We all have a plate that we fill with life.  Some of us go at life like Thanksgiving dinner.  We put some of everything on our plate and then try to eat it all.  Many of us end up feeling stuffed and lethargic.  Some of us go at life like a buffet.  We pick and choose what we want to put on our plate, but we can still end up with more than we can eat.  Well, my plate was so full that I couldn’t get anything done.  It was time to clean it off.

Therapeutic Violence

In cleaning the cabin I was able to work off much of my frustration and break the lethargy that has held me in place.  Having no electricity we had to clean the old-fashioned way, elbow grease.  We hung the rugs out on a line and beat them with brooms to get the dirt out.  The rhythmic swinging of the broom and the beating of the rug allowed me to let go of my anger and frustration through physical exertion.  By the time the rugs were done I was very tired and sore but much more relaxed and able to focus on the task at hand.

A Clean Sweep

As I swept the cabin floor I began identifying everything on my plate.  Sweeping around and under the furnishings I sorted through the negative and positive items in my life.  The negative things I was able to sweep out the door with the dirt and the positive I was able to organize.

Charting My Course

After we were done cleaning I wrote down my thoughts and plans to move forward.  Nothing spectacular, just a simple plan of action that includes scheduled activities, regular breaks, time with my family and time to unwind.

While the plan is simple there is much to be done and I’m still feeling a little overwhelmed.  Okay, so I’m feeling more than a little overwhelmed but it is doable.  I know what I need to pay my bills every month and what I need to do the earn it.  This is where the plan comes in.  If I follow it step-by-step and stick to my schedule I should be okay.  Here is the obsessive, compulsive, perfectionist, over achiever coming out.  These personal quirks have gotten me out of some dark places and have always been reliable as long as I have someone to pull me up short occasionally and keep me on track.  My mother has volunteered to do this and I trust her to keep me focused and make sure that I take good care of myself.

Finding My Way

Later that evening I stood out behind the cabin and looked at the stars.  They were so big and bright that I felt I could reach out and touch them.  While my knowledge of astronomy is limited I do know how to find the North Star from the Big Dipper.  This simple process I learned as a teenager and have always found it comforting.  Somehow I have always felt that if I can find the Big Dipper I am no longer lost.

A New Beginning

With much trepidation and great determination I begin my new plan of action.  Nothing I do is ever easy, especially with the bipolar, PTSD and anxiety.  This does not make me any less sure of myself and only more determined.  It is going to be a balancing act as I juggle my stress levels, medication needs and health concerns but I have great support and a simple plan.  Wish me luck.

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4 thoughts on “Finding the North Star

  1. All the luck in the word to you, seriously! You’re right… nothing is ever easy, but I have faith in you. You come across as an incredibly strong woman, and I get the feeling you’re quite strong-willed when you want to be 😉 Simple plans tend to be the most effective ones.

    … beating a rug is awesome, isn’t it? They should offer it as therapy.

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