Posting of Daily Goals for Decluttering/Organization – my Flight Plan

Posts tagged ‘stress’

Flight Plan on Hold? or FLYing through Surgery

E’s hemiplegic hand before surgery

I had mentioned upcoming surgery for my daughter.  Well, it happened last Friday and my life has been crazy to say the least.  Did this put my Flight Plan on hold, or did I FLY through surgery?  Well, let’s just say, I was not adequately prepared with a Flight Plan for surgery.  I mean, how many times in your life (I hope not many) do you need a packing list specifically for an overnight stay at the hospital?  And what exactly do you take?  Also, keep in mind that you’re accompanying your 10-year-old daughter who will not be able to carry anything for herself following surgery, leaving you as the sole person responsible for everything.  Throw in details like sleep deficit and the stress that comes for teachers at the beginning of every new school year with the overwhelming number of details to attend to even before the first Teacher Workshop days, and my Flight Plan faltered.  I panicked, became overwhelmed, and screamed at my husband who appeared to be living a normal, everyday life that I couldn’t have.

Cast from fingertips to about two inches from her shoulder after quadruple tendon transfer to lift her wrist and fingers into a useful grasping position

In the end, I did come up with a manageable amount of baggage to bring into the hospital and carry back out again.  I did keep things organized by things to do during the waiting time before and during surgery and clothing and toothbrushes etc for the overnight stay.  I actually considered using my wait time during surgery to write up the plan for the presentation I’m scheduled for during teacher inservice days next week.  I know, right?

What I really did during surgery was eat breakfast (so I wouldn’t become a patient later by fainting in the recovery room with my daughter), post updates to friends and family, nap (so I wouldn’t look like I might faint in the recovery room and so I could intelligently ask and answer questions), and eat lunch (to have the energy to care for my daughter after surgery, especially not knowing when I could get away again).

Yes, I really wonder what I looked like when the admitting nurse, while asking me questions about Emily’s medical history, made a point of telling me that I was welcome to come to the recovery room within 30 minutes of her arrival there but that I certainly didn’t have to if I didn’t want to.  What?! my tired brain protested, trying to make sense of this.  WHY would I not want to be in the recovery room with my daughter?  Are there actually parents who think they have better things to do or what?  At another point, the nurse asked me if I was okay.  “Oh, yes,” I said brightly!  Do I look that bad?  Yes, I guess a couple of nights of 5 hours sleep will do that.  I need at least 7 hours to really feel good.

Cast on right arm from surgery, brace on right leg due to hemiplegia (one-sided weakness or paralysis), bandaged knee from surgery to halt growth on left to facilitate evening of leg length, and crutch for left arm – Oh, and dinosaur surgical cap on head

So I guess it appeared that my Flight Plan may falter, but I flew (FLY = Finally Loving Yourself) when I took care of myself during surgery.  After all, what good would I be if I didn’t?!


Flight Plan -Decluttering Stressful or Stress Reducing?

Is it possible to get too obsessive with routines and decluttering so that it can actually become a stressful thing?  Or maybe it’s the stress of seeing so much more I want to get done accompanied by the awareness of time being short.  After all, this is county fair week as I’ve mentioned previously.  It’s also the week that my youngest has surgery scheduled.  (At least there’s no stress over the insurance coverage now.)  And I’m scheduled to present at back-to-school workshops and prepare for the start of the school as a teacher in two different districts as well as get my own kids ready to go back.  And I’m continuing my mission of routines at home with decluttering included, while living with 3 kids (two teens and a tween) who all feel some levels of stress as well with fair week and the impending start of a new school year that the fair signals for us.


My body may be starting to feel it!  I’ve had tightness in my chest and need to tell myself to relax….  Then I ask myself if I’ve been remembering some of the very basic things I’ve been trying to build routines for –   drink water, take my vitamins, get enough rest, have fun!

So now I’ve scheduled electronic reminders for myself on my new IPhone.  Every day I’m getting gentle chimes that remind me to “Drink water,” “Take vitamins,” etc.

A friend recently told me a story about someone who actually brought his dead son back to life by praising and thanking God for His great healing power and for the life of his son.  She stressed that through all of her own health issues, she has been remembering to be thankful and how stress relieving that is.

I tried it myself yesterday while flying across town in a total panic over back tags (yellow sheets of paper with large black numbers worn by the rabbit show participants).  Ours were misplaced and I had two girls waiting at the fairgrounds for their white shirts and jeans plus the back tags and only 20 minutes to go before the start of the competition.  All this after being so pleased with Teen DD’s organization with to-do lists made for the day.

Then I remembered the words of my friend whom I hadn’t seen in so long – about thankfulness.  I began thanking God as I pulled up to a red light.  Thank you God for the routines that carried us through fair entry days so that I made only one necessary trip across town and back instead of 2-3 trips for forgotten items.  Thank you God for all the opportunities our kids have through 4-H.  The red light turned quickly to green.  Thank you in advance, God, for the outcomes of the rabbit show and for my daughters who are waiting there patiently for me.  My shoulders relaxed with the realization that all outcomes are already decided and ours to enjoy.  What will we remember later and carry into the future with us?  Further relaxed.  I pulled into the fairgrounds and called to let the girls know I’d arrived with their clothes.  My Teen DD, whom I had expected to be screaming in panic and berating me for taking so long, said, “Okay, I see you.  I’ll come get the clothes.  And don’t worry about the back tags.  They made new ones for us.  Oh, and we’re not up for awhile.”   Yes, “all things work out for good to those who love the Lord.” Romans 8:28  And thank you, God, for putting Angie there to remind me of all this.

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