What is in our control?

This is the latest in my summer-long series, taking you on my journey of recovering from overwhelm and burnout and learning ways to sustainably keep going. Click here for the first installment, “Feeling guilty,” and click here for last week’s update, “The real reasons to be kind instead of judgmental.”

We are going through the process of changing from employer-based healthcare to, well, non-employer-based healthcare (for lack of a better term).

As we do this, we are discovering that there is a lot that is not in our control.

We’ve literally spent hours and hours out of many days this month, trying to understand what this draconian process requires of us, uploading forms, discovering that this ungainly and horrifying system has taken our information and spit back out stuff that just isn’t right.

My husband has spent hours on the phone with the human beings who are working to get our information properly into the system… Help us understand when choices will be made, when coverages will begin and end, and what to do next.

Among them all he has spoken with one person who was incredibly super helpful and wonderful (over the hour that they were on the phone together, I could hear in his voice “here’s someone who can help me, thank GOODNESS”) and another who was unable or unwilling to veer from the script. She shouted at children (because she, like everyone, is working from home), and made Ben feel as if everything we had done over these last few days was completely incorrect.

While we believe all will turn out well, it’s been really hard to envision that happy ending.

Which brings me to this week’s idea for staving off overwhelm, burnout, or feelings of guilt:
Understanding what is in our control, and what is not.

It is very much not in our control, who will be on the other end of that phone when we call to get help with applying for health insurance.
It’s also not in our control whether the system takes that information in and everything processes correctly.

So, what do we control?
Our feelings (which makes me so impressed and proud of Ben who remained so calm and unruffled while on the phone with that supremely unhelpful woman.)

What we tell ourselves, which makes me even prouder of Ben, who got off the phone and immediately took me on a “kindness adventure,” finding compassion and sympathy for her as she dealt with kids and work pressures on this extremely hot summer day.

Our thoughts – which today, have me thinking about all that we have to be grateful for (instead of dwelling on all the stuff I might be angry about.)

I am so grateful to Ben for his fortitude and steadiness and calm.
I am grateful that, after all this work, good quality healthcare will be available for us (and we will be able to pay for it.)

And I am grateful to you, for reading this and thinking hard on what is in your control <3

Always remember that I’m here for you.
We will get through this together!

Many hugs,

What’s up on the podcast this week:
An awesome interview with Evie Granville and Sarah Davis of the Modern Manners for Moms And Dads Podcast!

What’s up in the WTOO Book Club this week:
The last chapter of Positive Discipline Ninja Tactics! It’s all about “transcending adversity,” which seems quite fitting right now.
If you’re signed up for the WTOO Book Club, the zoom link will wing its way into your inbox tomorrow (Wednesday) evening, and the meeting will start at 9:30 PM EST.

What’s up in the Ninja Parenting Community this week:
We’re helping one of our members ask the right questions to help her daughter returned to preschool:


If you’re enjoying this Parenting Newsletter, click here so you can sign up to receive it in your inbox, or forward it to a friend who needs a parenting boost today.