Hi my name is Krista and I have a problem.
Maybe it’s not so much a problem as it is my own little secret. A secret that I walk around with daily and yearly holding really tightly to. I am about to tell you my secret because frankly, I just don’t care what you think of me, or at least I’m trying to get batter at not caring. Plus, if I’m looking to ya’ll for approval, my priorities are way out of line.
So here it is…
I am a people pleaser and I care a lot about what others think.
Well now that I have that out of the way… My hands are actually sweating as I write this. I’m not kidding it’s gross.
For years I have worried about my presence, both in person and online. When you’re in the line of work that I am in it’s very important that people like you and the work you do, otherwise you will not be successful. At least that has been the lie that I have been believing: that I should have it all together…
The pretty home, pretty well behaved kids wearing the newest trendiest clothing (that is always posted), awesome clothing myslef, great Instagram-worthy pictures everyday, the perfect meal plans (obviously gluten, meat and dairy free), pretty hair, makeup, pastors wife presence, books, captions, attitude, animals, rocking body, schedule, etc, etc, etc…. fill in your own.
But guess what???? I can’t do it all and I am so not perfect, ask the guy I take it all out on the most! My sweet husband who is just trying to help when I snap at him.
It all hit me one morning a few months ago. My morning routine looks like this most days: I wake up at 5am, I start a load of laundry, make coffee and get in a half hour or so of time with the Lord, switch the laundry load to the dryer, let the dogs out, feed the dogs (at this time we had 2 dogs), start breakfast when the rest of the family is waking up, fold laundry, unload dishwasher from night before, get everyone eating breakfast, get dressed, me + 3 kids and get our oldest Paisley ready to get to the bus, oh crap…. I need to feed the chickens. Go downstairs put on all my snow gear, fill water and food pails, and march my way out to the chicken coop and do that whole dance. Come back in get everyone ready and out the door we go!
Now on this particular day I happened to look at my Fitbit while I was on the way to the gym at 8:45am for my morning work out. My step count was already over 4,000!!!! WHAT?!
That’s when I realized that something had to go and when I thought about getting rid of the chickens my first worry was, “what will everyone else think of me”?
You see for the last 4 years, since we have lived in the country, I have wanted to have this beautiful picture of what our lives look like here. I imagined gardening with my kids while they ran around with chickens and dogs and I taught them about green beans and where they come from, then we would go to the front yard and swing on the tree swing and blow bubbles and watch the chickens, dogs, and cats, and play all day. Well guess what… I suck at gardening. No really, I am so bad at it. I killed things for 2 years and didn’t know the first thing about it at all. The kids stressed me out every time they would “help” me by picking things that were not ready that ACTUALLY did grow by accident. Or they would be off where I couldn’t see them getting into trouble, or I didn’t even get outside to do it all because my job requires me to be at my computer most days and that time is spent working while my kids nap (or let’s just be real… watch their tablets).
So I quit gardening and built a studio over the garden and when it was all finished I stood there in a super man pose and said, “yep, now THIS I know how to do”! I didn’t feel like a failure when I gave up on the garden- I just knew my limits. I admire those who can grow food and plants with ease and who love it, I just don’t. And that’s OK.
My fear in getting rid of the chickens though came from what I thought, or maybe still think, you would think of me. Haven’t I painted this cute picture of a rocking mom boss who lives in the county with her 3 perfect kids, husband, and animals and we all live in namaste harmony together while I delight you with with pretty images of my beautiful clients and my dreams all come true?! GROSS, I am so sorry if that’s how you feel about me.
I want you to know that letting it go is OK. I would hope that you don’t think any less of me that I no longer have chickens to take care of. And if you do, I ask you to check yourself. It takes a strong realization to understand that all this pressure we put on ourselves actually comes from us. You are the one who fills the calendar, who makes the play dates, who says “yes” to more and who is doing this to yourself. Essentially, you are making the choice to be crazy and to keep taking care of the chickens.
Don’t worry- they went to loving homes and maybe someday I will get more chickens because I do have this super cute coop in the backyard! But for now, while my babies are young, I would rather take care of them and take the unnecessary things off of my plate. So that I can be a better wife, mama, friend, business owner and woman.
What in your life is equivalent to my chickens? Something that needs to go so that by 8:45am your Fitbit doesn’t read 4,000 steps? I am still in the process of taking things off of our plate. Most that know me well know that I say “no” to a lot more. So, let’s work on this together and it will all start with you.
I wanted to leave you with some unedited goodness! Some images that sum up a little bit of reality for us.