Renew: Slow Down and Savor

I’ve read a few really great Goals for 2014 posts. This isn’t that. It’s also not really a word of the year. Maybe more a mantra to live by. While I know that decisions made last year were the right ones at the time, as I said it was rough on our family for me to work as much as I did. It was great professionally and ultimately the investment we are making now in grad school is so that in the near-ish future I have a job I enjoy that pays actual money. But as good as it all was for me as a scholar it was rough personally. I am mentally, physically, and emotionally spent. I felt like most of the year I was being pushed by a freight train – or maybe an express engine with my heels dug in trying to slow down. I will never ever regret taking last June off completely.

While I have a good blog record of family fun it wasn’t without effort.  I wasn’t always present even when I was home always feeling the weight of what I “should” be getting done. As I enter 2014 and have six weeks or so to finish up some things before the new little man makes his appearance, I’m finding that I just don’t want to. There are grant and fellowship applications that I know are a long shot, so I wonder if I should even make the effort (I should and will for at least some). I have an undergraduate who I supervise who NEEDS her thesis by April 1, which really means before I disappear into a baby coma. A manuscript that should have been submitted last fall and is finally close. The loose ends for my fellowship that need to be taken care of and delegated to the right people. Most of this is in progress, some is non-negotiable (hello undergrad who can’t not graduate because of me), and some I’m just going to say no to.

I just can’t keep holding back the train as I try to slow down. I NEED to actually slow down. I’ve been working on saying no and I’m getting better at it. My mantra for 2014 is to slow down and savor. I want to enjoy the new born period. I want to enjoy my family. I want to not feel stressed and crazy. I want to be a better wife and friend. Slow down and savor – starting now.