Most nights, I go to bed exhausted but some days feel more accomplished than others.
There are times when I feel like I am really killing it all.
I’m rocking it at the office.
I’m thriving as a mom.
I’m grooving as a wife.
I’m kicking ass as an advocate.
I’m taking names as an informed consumer.
I’m keeping it real as a good friend.
I’m slaying it as a fit & strong woman.
But then there are days when I feel very defeated — almost like I cannot manage to get my act together in one of these areas of my life, much less all of them. This struggle of mine, the yo-yo struggle, is not new. I’m sure women have been doing it since the dawn of time. We probably slayed saber-tooth tigers while breastfeeding and picking lice out of caveman hair.
There are moments when I feel like what I am doing means something; on these days, I am encouraged by what happens as a result of my actions. That might mean hearing my daughter pronounce a word I’ve been working on with her for weeks or perhaps seeing a terrible piece of legislation fail in committee in the Arkansas capitol. Other days, it means noticing an issue at work that seasoned attorneys have overlooked or perhaps, just buying a new pair of running shoes and holding myself accountable to finding time to run (Y’all, I run now — that’s an entire post in and of itself).
Then there are days where, despite all my efforts, things go awry. My daughter pees in the floor and refuses to get in the tub while dogs play in her puddle. A terrible bill finds itself closer to becoming law and the lawmaker supporting it shakes my hand, looks me in the eye, and tells me condescendingly that he appreciates my efforts. I miss glaring typos in a contract and look like an idiot without access to spellcheck or a functioning brain. I forget to text a friend back and feel like a jerk. I miss a chance to go running and decide to eat my disappointment the next day with a cupcake at work.
Essentially, my life is like a yo-yo. Some days, I’m up. Way, way up! Diana Prince up. But some days I am down. What keeps me pushing through when I’m down is knowing that I’ll be back on top of the world eventually. And what keeps me humble when I’m up is knowing that I’m one typo or toddler meltdown away from feeling like a bumbling fool.
I suspect this feeling of mine is not particularly new or newsworthy. Millions of people — not just women — probably feel like this often. But I wanted to write at least some small account of it so that one day — if I ever manage to get off the yo-yo track — I can look back and remember how it felt to live life in a constant state of flux. It isn’t glamorous. It isn’t terrible. But it is a yo-yo and most days, I am just trying to avoid tying myself in knots.