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April in Glenwood column: Taking time to breathe, laugh and shower

One week into the new year, I haven’t exactly jumped into resolution mode. I’m more on the hesitant side of the spectrum.

Like a nearly naked swimmer doing a polar bear plunge in frigid temperatures.

Hesitant might not be the word I’m looking for here. Unmotivated is probably more like it, although it’s never easy to admit that quality. The new year is supposed to be all about motivation and goals. It’s the hype and pressure that can sometimes make those goals seem as lofty as driving a Maserati on a freelance writer’s salary. Unless one of the freelance gigs involves critiquing the auto industry, which could happen.



A girl can dream.

I didn’t go too big on the resolutions made last week, knowing motivation doesn’t always come to me in droves. It’s more like a trickle that comes when least expected. So I don’t like to put too much pressure on myself about it. One day I’m just happy to know I was able to shower amidst feeding baby a nutritionally complete diet and helping him learn to walk and talk per society’s recommended expectations.



No pressure there at all.

I’m not alone in the resolution reservations. I was just reading, per the Statistic Brain Research Institute website, that only about 9 percent of people feel they’re successful in achieving their resolutions. The number is low, and I imagine that’s because 44 percent of those resolutions are self-improvement or education-related. I know improving myself can be the last thought that crosses my mind at the end of a day.

The shower thing is a bigger deal than it sounds.

Statistic Brain also reports around 32 percent of new year’s resolutions are weight-related, 42 percent involve money, and 23 percent are focused on relationships. Those aren’t exactly the easiest aspects of life to change for the better in one year. Especially when all three are on the mind at the same time.

That’s the motherhood trifecta.

As a person new at this whole mom thing, I went with simple for 2017. Meditate and relax more. Do some yoga. Breathe. Try not to let social media get me down. Sounds easy enough, right? Seems so much so, I probably should be all signed up for some yoga classes by now. Or at least have invested $20 in a yoga mat for some home meditation. But here I sit, thinking I’ll get around to it next week. Or the week after.

Maybe the week after that.

The moral of that short story is to look for motivation in my adult friends and family because the person I see the most, an almost-18-month-old named Will, hasn’t exactly started saying, “You can do it, Mama!” That includes those friends on Facebook, who I sometimes only encounter online because of regional restraints. One girlfriend who lives in Asheville, N.C., has set aside a place in her home especially for yoga, with relaxing lighting, inspirational artwork, and a mat ready for poses. Liking and commenting on the pic on Facebook is as motivated as I’ve been, and I admit that’s pretty sad. Today I will do something about it.

First let me get to that dirty diaper that needs to be changed.

Comedy helps with the icy resolution plunge, as I find it’s much easier to laugh at my motivation misses than kick myself over them. I don’t have too many lofty goals with stand-up this year, mostly because I know the hard work it takes to get those valuable hours of stage time, especially after dark. Anyone who has achieved success at entertaining knows it takes focus and drive and, most of all, motivation. I’m still feeling this mom life adjustment, so I resolve to find my own way to continue comedy in life. That can be through appreciation — streaming comic Laurie Kilmartin’s new stand-up special “45 Jokes About My Dead Dad,” or finally reading Amy Schumer’s memoir, “The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo.” It can also happen through my own writing, always something I resolve to do more. And I have a website with a funny name that still needs to be developed. I waited a long time for motherhood, so my nights are mostly reserved for baby feedings and baths, bedtime book readings, and rocking a little one to sleep. Those are my favorite moments of the day.

Next to a shower.

April E. Allford considers watching comedy meditation. She can be reached at aprilallford@gmail.com.


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