Don’t Quote Me: New Landscape or New Eyes?

This week it feels like I need a new set of eyes.

In the throes of renovating, a busy work schedule, and the kids home on summer break, it’s easy to lose sight of reality. There has been some spiraling into negative emotions, mostly fueled by a sudden onset of insomnia and my stress levels that flare dramatically with renovating (decisions, noise, mess, strange people in my house, all coupled with my perfectionist tendencies); and, of course, these two issues create a vicious cycle.


I’ve been daydreaming a lot about a future reality; work completed on the house, kids back in school, pressures alleviated with work. But maybe I need to settle into where I’m at – it’s temporary, I know – and look at things differently. Maybe I need to watch her tennis lessons instead of scrolling on my phone and better learn the rules of the game. Maybe I need to take notes on the how-to’s of renovations, a cheat sheet for the future, instead of catastrophizing over every hiccup. Maybe I need to snuggle my gap-toothed boy at night again and take the time – real time, minutes, not seconds – to study his face and marvel at just how big he’s become.

I’m not sure how well these thoughts actually tie in with the quote below, but I keep ending up considering how to look at the familiar until it becomes unfamiliar again – both to marvel at the beauty and novelty of things in my life while recognizing that there is so much to be learned by the things currently surrounding me.

Even armed with this knowledge I feel stressed (literally, this very minute; I may have already ugly-sobbed today*). But maybe, that too, is part of the voyage? Clearing out the emotional cobwebs, wiping the tears from my eyes, and looking around with a fresh perspective.

It’s worth a try…

The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.

Marcel Proust

*I wrote this several days ago and am happy to report there has been no sobbing – ugly or pretty – since.

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