If you read my post “10 Things I’ve Learned About Being a Mum” then you already know that nothing ever goes according to plan. No matter how hard you try. Just when I thought I was getting into the swing of motherhood I was hit with not one but three bombshells. First, I finished maternity leave to find out that I didn’t have a job to go back to. Second, our landlords sold the townhouse that we have been living in for nearly 4 years and we have been forced to move. And third, I didn’t get accepted to the program I applied for at school, I got waitlisted!
Don’t get me wrong, I love being a stay-at-home Mum with Kendrick. I get to spend every day with my main man! Financially, it hit us hard, but it was especially difficult for me, emotionally. I had been working since I was 15 years old, I moved out of my parents’ house when I was 17, and I have been making my own money and paying my own way through life ever since. Not being able to contribute to our family financially is something that I still struggle with. However, I am so lucky to have a husband who works hard enough so that I can stay home with our son.
When it comes to our home, it’s sort of bittersweet. Although we love where we live, the house needed some serious love, as does the entire building ($60,000 per unit for a new roof, etc.) and our landlords just couldn’t commit to all the repairs that were needed. I don’t blame them at all for selling, but it is so tough to find pet-friendly rentals in our area. This leaves us with some tough decisions and a short time-frame to find a suitable housing solution for our entire family, fur-kids and all.
School has always been something that has come easy for me. I have never really had to put in TOO much effort (although being pregnant for my fourth year of my bachelor’s degree was quite challenging) and I have always had above average grades. Anything that I have applied to, I have been accepted to. Any challenge I have given myself, I have accomplished. How did I not get in? This is what I was born to do. Everyone thinks so. It took 23 years of being told that I should really be a teacher for me to finally take the step and change career paths. I finished my first bachelor’s degree against all odds (a story I will get to another day). I had glowing recommendations, tons of volunteer hours, a kick-ass letter of intent, a great GPA…and I got waitlisted. Total ego crush!
So, there you have it! Life threw me a whole bunch of lemons. And so this month we are making lemonade!
Below you will find my fool-proof recipe for taking life’s lemons and making them into something great, as well as some great drink recipes to help along the way!
Step 1: Go ahead and cry! Be sour, be mad, be sad, be angry, disappointed, overwhelmed, out of luck. It is normal to have emotions and it is healthy to let them out. Some of life’s lemons are more sour than others, of course, so this step may take an hour, a week, or maybe longer depending on your situation. But set yourself a timer and when it the time is up you need to be prepared to move on to the next step.
Step 2: Accept that you cannot change what happened, and find peace with that. Elsa said it best: “let it go!” Step back, take a breath, and count to ten. The juice will never go back in the fruit. Life just doesn’t work that way. It can be difficult to move forward but unfortunately we have no choice. Time only moves in one direction and we haven’t found a way to go back or to stop it yet. It sucks, but it’s just the way it is. This is usually the hardest step, but without making peace with the past it is impossible to move forward with the momentum that you will need to succeed.
Step 3: Make a plan for the future. The best way to move forward it so make a plan, set goals, and find motivation in improving yourself and your situation. Reformulate your strategy. Identify what it is that is stopping you from reaching your goals and figure out what you need to do to make the necessary changes to succeed. When setting goals, they should always be SMART: specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, and time-oriented. Make a plan that is realistic and set yourself an appropriate time-frame for each step of your journey.
Step 4: Make it happen! Stick to your plan. Do whatever you need to do in order to keep yourself motivated. Join an accountability group, set yourself daily reminders, or send yourself inspirational quotes to help you keep your head in the game. Keep on grinding because you know that if you work hard, stick to your plan, and believe in yourself, you are capable of anything!
Step 5: Enjoy your lemonade!
You are strong, resilient, and can bounce back from whatever life throws your way if you follow these five steps. And for a little help along the way my friend Sarah at thisisyumbo.com has put together three delicious (boozy) pink lemonades to perk up your day.