Small child hurtles towards a fence; I slow my steps, almost stopping dead as she – oh, no, she will! Will she? Phew, she didn’t! – just misses the latest obstacle in her race through the world. It turns out that I’m not the only one who does this: DH also puts himself into counter-intuitive slo-mo when the children are careering towards a collision.
And recently, face with some big, tricky mid-life reality check issues, I’ve found myself backing off from my family relationships – already hearing the crunch of some big impacts up ahead. I pulled up and I pulled back. It’s understandable – big ipacts on a 10 year old-marriage with two children are going to hurt, so of course I’d want to protect myself.
But actually all it did was give me two problems: the original Big Bad Mid-Life shiz and the behaving-like-an-emotional-zombie shiz. I was brave, and I didn’t slow my steps. I spoke up, I strode on and I faced up to some of the Big Bad stuff. It wasn’t the easiest conversation to have, and we both may have cried a bit/a lot, and there was a day of painful uncertainty while we waited for another chance to talk. But the impact seems to have passed us by this time, and we both know (again) how much of a good thing we still have going on after 15 years together..
Whether I’ll be brave enough to catch up my little scootering terror as she whooshes past the next obstacle in her path, we’ll have to wait and see. How about you – are you a leaner-in or a backer-off? What helps you embrace your obstacles?