Fix it your damn self.

August 12, 2013

in Family, Home Life, Parenting, Self Awareness

stressWith summer as we know it over (the youngest kid is back in school, the oldest has moved out and my sister is safely tucked into rehab) it’s time to reflect on my stressful summer. Don’t get me wrong, I also had a lot of fun, but there were parts that were horribly frustrating. I’ve always been good at handling difficult situations. If I had a super power, that would be it. I have an ability to work through situations and get down and take care of business. I’m not sure if I have always been that way or if it was a learned response to having so many crappy things thrown at me over the past 6 or so years. I’m like a bull, head down and drive into it.

To quote from Vanilla Ice.

“If there’s a problem, yo’ I’ll solve it.”

There is a downfall to this. One, people expect you to fix their shit for them because “you are sooooooo good at it.” No, I am not “good at it” I just do my best at fixing it. If you tried it I’m pretty sure you can do it too. Two, people tend to think you are stronger than you really are. There isn’t a lot of empathy because people think you are a badass and that the stress of what you are dealing with doesn’t bother you.

By the way, it does, I just hide it pretty good.

I have gotten better (but still have room to grow) on setting boundaries and only jumping in to help when I have to. This summer has been a huge learning step for me. When you have people in your life that are constantly draining you with their needs, it can get overwhelming. There is a balance of finding the right time to help/support and the right time to tell them they are on your own. I’m learning that those people who won’t do for themselves probably never will. They constantly reach out for support, over and over again. Those of us who fall into the helper category get strapped down with the guilt and an overwhelming list of things to do while the person who needs the help sits back and watches Netflix.

This summer I have been slowly untangling myself from these webs I have fallen into out of perceived obligation. I’m realizing I don’t have to be the fixer. Life is what you make of it. If you chose not to help yourself then you can’t expect someone to put in more effort into making a situation better than you do.

And that freedom from those tentacles has been liberating.

My mind is getting accustomed to hanging up the phone and not going into Bob the Builder “I can fix it!” mode. I just wish them well, say goodbye and grab the remote to watch Skins on Netflix.

1 Shelley August 12, 2013 at 1:14 pm

Vanilla Ice? Really? Lol. Seriously tho, I totally get what you are saying. I’ve been on that road more times in my life than I care to count, but after the last go-round, I think I’m pretty well “cured”. Welcome to the “Eyes Wide Open Club”! Kudos. Love ya.

2 Sandi August 12, 2013 at 10:16 pm

Shelley- You know you sang the song out loud when you read it! And yes, it’s about time I grow a pair and learn to not over give! Thanks for welcoming me to the club!

3 Mary Styler August 12, 2013 at 5:21 pm

You know, when on an airplane, you have to put your own oxygen first! so this is good! You MUST know, you, Cheryl and the kids are FIRST. Then…all those other people. And I totally get you. I’m the “fixer” in my family. At first you feel honored. Then you feel obligated. Then you feel frustrated. Then you are just plain pissed that they can’t get their own shit together and expect you to do it for them…cause you are so GOOD at it. Yeah. Bite me. You are on the right track girl. Stay on it!

4 Sandi August 12, 2013 at 10:19 pm

Mary- You are so right! Love the analogy! Thanks for the support!

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