By Jamia Ponder
Are you really feeling the stress these days? Yeah friend...me too. As if living in the midst of a pandemic wasn’t enough, you throw in an election of epic proportions, financial considerations, jobs, kids of any kind (fur babies or otherwise) plus a MEDICAL marriage? And whew chile….you’re having a glass of something by noon! We are in a literal pressure cooker filled with all of those things and more. Our family dynamics shape our experiences and the weights we carry can be completely overwhelming. So I ask you, how do your thoughts serve you? Are you being intentional about managing your stress throughout this time? Or are you simply numbering the days?
Y’all, it’s confession time -- I like to be in control. There I said it. I am a planner so spreadsheets, checklists and well planned out calendars give me the warm and fuzzies. I mean, I freaking loveeee it! But here’s what 2020 has taught me….I am NOT in control. Covid came through, pushed my kiddos out of school and back home, shifted my med school hubby out the hospital to finish his 4th year studies FROM HOME, two jobs, volunteer gigs and the final whammy - med school graduation was cancelled. My perfectly outlined calendar was in disarray, things were out of place, out of order and I was seriously SHOOK. I mean, I should have let go of the ‘control’ a while ago. We lived through a category 5 hurricane for goodness sake! But then again, I really thought that was just another chapter in the story. Like nobody can control the weather right?!? But this time, the message was clear. JAH-ME-YAH….YOU ARE NOT IN CONTROL, YA HEAR ME?!? - Signed, God.
This life can be hard and I used to pride myself on “keeping things together” or whatever that meant. Truth is - I was Captain of the Struggle Bus. I mean hot mess express. That is to say, literally held together by a hair tie...and I’m talking about the one you’ve used 927 times with the white showing around the band and if you use it one more time, it’s trash.
No matter the season of life you’re in, it can be tough. We are living through a pandemic for heaven's sake and the face of medicine is literally morphing before our very eyes. Truthfully, it doesn't matter if this is your first year of med school or your 25th year out of training, you’re impacted every single day. And for those of us that hold up the white coats, the effects can be jarring and downright exhausting.
Here in the Ponder household, residency applications are in full swing! Tensions are high and our minds are packed with things to do, places to be and tasks to complete. Some days, I wake up in a M-O-O-D...and some days, the good Doctor does too! I’m like, well what bit you in the butt? And he’s like, somebody woke up on the wrong side of hell! We laugh. We shrug it off. And we keep it moving. Because guess what, we’re on the same team. Life is going to bring us enough so we might as well let love (and a little laughter) keep us through it all.
So I urge you today, choose thoughts that serve you. Sink into gratitude and draw good things to you. Choose peace. Choose acceptance. Choose love. Choose kindness. And choose to believe that you’re exactly where you’re supposed to be at exactly the right time. Believe that the next best step is just ahead of you. Stressing won’t change a thing and things won’t change just because you stress. So you might as well R-E-L-A-X and find the joy in the journey. It won’t always be easy but it’s most certainly worth it!
Love you endlessly,
Bio: Jamia Ponder is the Founder & Creator of The Mrs. Beside- a movement, safe space, and podcast dedicated to celebrating the real ones standing BESIDE and NEVER behind their spouse. From full time jobs, last minute dry cleaning, kid pick up & drop off, grocery shopping, planning, bills, budgeting, chauffeuring, cooking, exercising, eating (somewhat) right, playdates, and an expected chandelier swing from time to time, SHE KNOWS WHAT IT TAKES...And whew girl, ISSALOT!
You can find Jamia on IG- @themrsbeside. Be sure to check out The Mrs. Beside Podcast too!
Photo Credit: Carlos Whitfield, CPW Photography