The weight we carry. And no I’m not talking about the weight around our stomachs or excess pounds on our body. I’m talking about the invisible weight we carry with us every day. Some days there is even more weight than others. And just as extra physical weight can slow us down so can this additional invisible weight we carry.
The invisible weight we carry comes from whatever we burden ourselves with. It can be too many commitments. It can be daily stress. It can be trying to balance work and parenthood. It can be trying to remember everything you need to for your children’s schedules. It can be the weight of what we have gone through that we still carry with us. It can be the weight and barriers we are trying to break through. It can be the limitations we set for ourselves that won’t allow us to be as successful or open as we can and should be.
Whatever the cause, that doesn’t matter. We must first become aware of this weight or burden. Then we must figure out how to rid ourselves of this additional weight that is slowing us down.
Getting rid of this weight is not easy just as it’s not easy to lose extra pounds we put on. But we need to realize that carrying all this additional weight does slow us down. It physically and mentally wears on us.
I know motherhood is a weight I carry. Keeping track of all the various activities of my kids, keeping up on groceries and laundry, sorting out the childcare schedule, balancing work and being a mom. Am I good enough? Am I doing enough? How am I compared to other moms? Are my kids doing ok?
I carry the weight of having cancer. I carry the fear that fades some with time but never fully goes away. I carry the many scars and hours of infusions and treatment. I have the constant appointments and monitoring and reconstruction procedures. I have the many physical changes I’ve been through as well as mental which are sometimes even harder to overcome than the surgeries and hair and breast loss. The sorting out what is normal for me. The knowing I carry the she had cancer label with me. The I have to explain what I’ve been through and that I’m ok now. The explaining yes I was pregnant when I had cancer and my baby is here and healthy.
There’s also the weight of losing my mother. There’s missing her at holidays and for each of my children’s milestones. There’s the questions I ask am I doing what mom would do and is is it good enough? There is thinking of all she missed out on and how unfair it is losing a parent young. There’s the worry do I do enough for my dad now that mom is no longer around.
There’s the weight of I’m not good enough. I can’t keep up my house. I have too much stuff. I keep myself and kids too busy. The house is too small. I’m don’t have time for things because I work full time and have five kids.
We can’t fully remove all this weight and it takes time. We need to work at it just like we use diet and exercise to lose extra pounds. We may use therapy and/or writing as an outlet. Exercise or art can be an escape. We find ways to make time for ourselves despite very busy schedules. We learn to say no to taking on too much.
And with these small steps we may finally begin to heal. We may finally remove some of the weight.
We may never shed all the weight we carry but we need to in order to get through our day. We can’t be weighed down and slowed by all the extra burden we carry. We will feel so much better and move through each day easier. It’s a process and takes time but all change takes time. And just as we feel better when we lose extra pounds, we will feel better when we rid ourselves of the excess weight we carry around.
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