Monday, June 1, 2009


I've been thinking a lot about Balance lately. One of my favorite rings reminds me of it daily. On good days, it is a reminder to be grateful that I have such a full life, that I have so much to juggle. One other days, however, it feels like a reminder of something I struggle unsuccessfully to achieve.
Juggling raising kids and the myriad of complexities involved in running a household and a growing business is difficult, and it gets crazy around here. I often feel like I'm zooming from one thing to the next, with barely a moment to breathe - to stop and appreciate everything around me.

It occurred to me one day that true Balance is rarely achieved. Why gymnasts and tight-rope walkers spend more time tipping back and forth than they do upright on the beam. When I'm focusing on how far I'm tipping left, when I should be tipping right, or all the things I'm not getting to, instead of all the things I am achieving every day - its no wonder days can be full of stress. Instead of feeling like I'm reaching for a goal, I feel like I'm trying not to fall. And then there are those moments - brief stretches where it is all clicking nicely. I feel full of purpose and accomplishment and I wonder why it all seemed so hard before. And then, in a flash, its gone.

One of the greatest gifts of recovery, at least for me, is the growing ability to appreciate that age old (and sometimes annoying) adage that the Joy is in the Journey. I spent too many years looking longingly at the balance beam, the tight rope, frozen in my own fears - what if I can't do it? What if I fall? What if I look stupid up there? I stayed immobilized, thinking I was keeping myself safe. That voice still haunts me ... tells me I have no business being up there - "you can't start a business! what are you doing?" ... "why try - you might fail"... or the loudest one: "you're just going to fall anyway, so don't bother".

I have learned, in recovery, how to answer that voice. The answer is usually "So What?". At least I'm up there, I'm out there swinging. I miss way more pitches than I hit, but the ones I hit feel great. And the best lesson of all, for me, has been that falling isn't nearly as scary as its cracked up to be. You just get right. back. up.


  1. This is beautiful, a perfect start to my day Ellie!

  2. I adore that ring! What a simple but necessary reminder for your daily living. Gorgeous. -e

  3. Hi Ellie,
    I found my way over from Liz's place. I adore that ring!! Must have!!!

    And thank you for the post above regarding recovery and AA. As the daughter of an alcoholic living in a family that still refers to my father's illness as "a habit", it's refreshing to hear someone speaking so truthfully.

  4. Well said. Have you seen the movie "Up". It's got the same message.

    Welcome to the blogesphere.