Last weekend, my husband headed out of town on a work trip, and the babe and I enjoyed a "girls' weekend." I am grateful for these opportunities to spend solo time with our daughter outside of the weekday rhythms of planned activities, classes, and household errands. With no set agenda, the opportunities for unexpected delights are high. We ventured to a museum, dined out in favorite (and new!) restaurants, and jumped in a few puddles along the way.
But in the evenings, after I tucked her in for the night, I found myself restless. I know better than to allow my mind to roam freely when I am anxious, so I tried instead to channel my energy into reading, planning, and catching up on work projects. Regrettably, my mind would not cooperate. Over and over I found myself replaying decisions made and roads not taken and creating justifications in defense of each choice, complete with research and positive outcomes to support my case. Halfway through such an exercise it occurred to me: the only person in this argument is me...
No one is picking up the phone to accuse me of poor decision-making. No one is standing at my door in judgment of my life choices. Quite frankly, no one has the time, energy, or desire to invest half as much thought into my life choices as I am putting into these defenses.
I wish I could say this realization lifted an immense weight from my shoulders, but it would be more accurate to describe it as a work in progress. I did, however, resolve to rise above the self-doubt that drives these internal squabbles and take ownership of my role in creating - and ending - the drama.
Next time you catch yourself in the middle of an argument, consider whether your adversary is real or imagined. Stop fighting ghosts - and yourself.