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Post No. 10 of 10 almost daily posts in the “July ’21” series.

Cycle day 6. Transitioning from Menstrual phase (ideal activities: rest, evaluation, and research) to Follicular phase (ideal activities: starting things, brainstorming, planning).

This is kind of a wild week. “Kind of” as in – Valley Fair tomorrow, all day family memorial day and game night on Friday, and family birthday part on Saturday.

I’m a turtle, not a sprinter, so weeks like this are when I absolutely must prioritize what will help me – and therefore my other people – survive. Here’s my Survival Plan for this week:

It is good that brainstorming and planning are key strengths for me at the moment because I just did a bunch of that out of necessity. I mapped out the entire schedule for the next few days, particularly noticing what the food plan is and any other things we need to buy, because shopping time is limited.

Manny just came to find me in the bedroom and we decided that we needed to snuggle for one minute. So we did. This buddy and I have always adored our snuggle time, and since he’s the youngest, I think we’ll hang on to that for a while. Emotional and physical connection with the people you love are essential every day.

Last night I was so so tired. Sticking to my goals is important, but sleep is pretty much never less important than following through with a blogging objective, among about a million other things. “Remember – sleep deprivation is a form of torture,” one of my midwives shared when I was pregnant with our first. Torture is not on the agenda for this week.

I’m all about being frugal, but I’m going to be buying some extra convenience foods and prepackaged items because survival. At times in the past I’ve been all about super healthy super homemade and super green. I’m not sensing that invitation at the moment. Rather it’s more like I should aim for super realistic.

Or any other podcast player. I love catching little moments to listen to smart people talk about stories and faith and culture and their own ways of survival. When life is crazy I especially feel grounded when I can keep checking in with my favorite listens as I drive or clean. It’s so helpful to not feel too isolated and in my own head when things are stressful.

As a recovering perfectionist, I’m super intentional about leaning in to ways that I can do SOMETHING as opposed to doing nothing if it can’t be all the way I want to. Today, that’s going to be pursued in the area of exercise – a short yoga session (even just 5 minutes!) – and yardwork – watering the most desperate plants only – and eating – lunch looks like pickles wrapped in ham and cream cheese.

Similar to strategize, but a little more automated. Inspired somewhat by The Lazy Genius’s encouragement to ‘decide in advance,’ I’m doing a similar gift format for every single one of the gifts we’re giving at the birthday party on Saturday. Book + money or gift card. As the cousins get older all they really want is money, but that’s boring, so we’ll tuck it inside a book we think they’ll like. Wish me luck – heading off to execute this plan next!

Thanks for travelling with me for these 10 days as I’ve returned back to the blogging ritual. It was a pleasure.

See you soon. Happy Surviving!

By Naomi Bird

Wife of tenor Nathan Bird, pianist, organist, former music therapist, writer, tea-drinker, mom of two mini-sopranos and two mini-tenors, and learner of loving the arts.

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