Okay, so I got together with the Women Who Run with the Moose a few weeks back for our usual girls' night. We went over to Pat’s Pizza in Dover Foxcroft. Ordered a couple of salads to split like we usually do, so we can say we ate something healthy. But really, we were there for the pizza and beer.
We’re at that point were you’re thinking, I’m full, but I’d really like another slice because it taste so good. Well, maybe just half a slice. When Betty goes, “I hope none of us made a new year's resolution to lose weight. Pass me another piece of the sausage and bacon, would you?”
Celeste jumps in, “It’s March. What new year's resolution?”
“Exactly,” Dot says. “I don’t make resolutions anymore, because I always break ‘em.”
Shirley goes, “Tell me about it. My resolution was to be more patient with my mom. That lasted about a day and a half.”
“How is Mini doing, Shirley?” I ask.
“Every once in awhile she has a moment when she’s right there, you know? But most of the time, she’s off in her own world. She thought I was my Aunt Agnes the other day. Agnes has been dead for twenty years.”
“Oh, that’s tough!”
“I’m probably going to regret this later,” Rita says, “but I’m going for another half slice of pepperoni.”
“Dibs on the other half,” I jump in. “You know, I’ve been thinking.”
“Oh, no!” Shirley groans.
“Wise acre! I’ve been thinking. I read this article in the dentist’s office a while back about new year’s resolutions. Forgot all about it until now. The gal who wrote it, Kim something or other, had a nice take on it. She said we break our resolutions because they’re about doing something better. Lose weight, be more patient, get in shape. They’re all about us not being good enough, and are really kind of mean.”
“The nature of the beast, right?” says Betty.
“It doesn’t have to be. She said she tried an experiment, and asked her group of friends to make resolutions for each other. And low and behold, the friends' resolutions were much nicer. In fact, they were all about being kind to yourself.”
“Oh, let’s try it!” Rita chimes in.
“Okay, who wants to go first?”
Here’s what we came up with:
You already know what Shirley’s resolution was: be more patient with her mom. Mini goes to senior daycare three days a week. Our resolution for Shirley was to put Mimi in for another day, making four. Tough as nails Shirley actually got a little teary. She said she’d been thinking about doing this, but felt a little guilty. So this was just what she needed, and felt like a weight had been lifted off her shoulders.
Dot doesn’t make a resolution because she always break them, so we wanted to come up with something she could stick to. Dottie really loves to read, but tends to go, go, go and not take time for it. Our resolution for her was to stop everything and read for fifteen minutes a day. Doable, right?
Celeste’s resolution was to keep her commitments and stop rescheduling things. Now, the reason she does this is because her daughter is always calling at the last minute and asking Celeste to babysit the grandkids. Celeste never says no, and turns her life upside down to accommodate. Our resolution for her was to set some boundaries on the babysitting. How much notice does she need? How many times a week and for how long? It was a hard talk to have with her daughter, but Celeste followed through and she says it’s actually improved their relationship.
Rita’s resolution was to be better at getting nice supper on table every night. She enjoys cooking; finds it relaxing. Our resolution for her was to leave work when she’s scheduled to finish her shift, instead of letting it bleed into her life. This called for Rita to actually say no every once and awhile (to coworkers who want to leave early, to customers who are looking for free advice and milking it for all it’s worth). This doesn’t come easy, but Rita’s been gearing up to try it by practicing in the mirror. Baby steps.
Betty’s resolution was to manage her time better. Our resolution for her was to resign from being in charge of everything. She tends to be way over scheduled. We suggested she start by letting go of one thing. She decided to resign from being the head of their condo association, a thankless job. She did it, and hasn’t looked back.
Now, my resolution was to keep up with my house work. The girls' resolution for me was to have one chore free day a week. I got kind of panic-y when I first thought about it. But, let me tell you, it’s been liberating! I’ve been taking Sundays off from chores. I am actually letting myself have a day off, people. And you know what? I seem to get more done during the rest of the week because I’m happier, and have more energy. There’s probably a life lesson in there somewhere.
That’s it for now. Catch you on the flip side!
Upcoming Shows and Book Events
April 6: A Visit With Ida, First Congregational Church, (open to the public) potluck at 6:00pm, show at 7:00pm, Hampton, NH
June 9: Book Reading: The Sweet Life, Boothbay Harbor Memorial Library Literary Luncheon, https://bbhlibrary.org/ 11:30am, Boothbay Harbor, ME