Friday, February 12, 2010

Buddy Breathing


A few years ago, I saw a show on TV about Navy SEAL training.  At least, I think it was Navy SEAL training.  Anyway, the part I remember is the buddy breathing training.  You know, where you're in the water with someone else, and you have only one air tank between you, so you have to hook up in a special hold and share it.  They teach you how to do that, and then they chuck you and your buddy in the deep end of a swimming pool to practice.  They have a bunch of trainers in the pool agitating the water to mimic rough sees.  Then one trainer swims around and tries to break you and your buddy apart, again, simulating the dreadful force of water in a storm.  Your job is to maintain your hold on your buddy and to continue breathing.  I'm not particularly fond of swimming -- I'm much better at Arts & Crafts -- and I'm very fond of breathing.    I'm not sure I'd do very well in this training.

Lately 'round here we've been hit with several rounds of winter weather -- the terms Snopocalypse, Snomaggedon, and Snoverkill have been bandied about.  Schools have closed, meetings have been canceled; even the federal government shut down for a couple of days.  And while my Girl Scout Service Unit got their cookies, a good number of truck deliveries had to be rescheduled.  I've had regular meetings canceled, extra meetings canceled, rescheduled meetings canceled, rescheduled meetings rescheduled on other regular meetings dates/times and not canceled... My calendar looks like I let a two-year-old with a handful of Sharpies loose on it.  And my daughter wanted me to set up play dates for her during the blizzards -- yes, I said blizzards, in Southern Maryland.  "Mom, can Mollie come over?  You can go get her."  It's white-out conditions out there.  And even afterwards, after hours of clearing the walks, cars, and driveway of snow and ice, I realized I haven't driven in this stuff in over 25 years.  "Can Mollie come over?"  I don't think so.

My stress levels are, umm, a little high.  And while I've enjoyed checking out on blogs and Facebook people's need for wine -- oh, how I wish I drank, and lately, how I wish I drank to excess -- I'm just tired of it.  I need to figure out how I'm going to attend two meetings, both mandatory, at the same time, how I'm going to get my troop ready for World Thinking Day, how I'm going to get the Destination Imagination team ready for it's competition next month, how I'm going to get my daughter ready for her AWANA Bible Games next week, how I'm going to get my son ready for his rescheduled County Science Fair also next week, how I'm going to maintain the support group and see to the needs of the newbies, and how I'm going to schedule and hold 6-10 cookie booths between now and the end of March.  And there's more snow predicted for Monday.  And Tuesday.

All of this leads me to my "problem" with commitment:  If I commit to something, then I need to see it through.  That's why I don't commit if I know I can't finish it and why my work with the LDA and CACSE are on temporary hold.  (Another life lesson I want my children to learn:  Don't make promises you can't keep.  Keep the promises you make -- you may have to be flexible, but keep them.)  I've committed to my family, to Girl Scouts, to Destination Imagination, to AWANA, to the Support Group...  It was going to be a difficult couple of months with a really tight schedule anyway, but now with the weather situation...  I've been having insomnia and panic attacks.  They happen.  Apparently they happen a lot during times of Snoverkill.  Mostly it's about keeping promises in times of trouble.  My panic attacks have a theme similar to buddy breathing:  I've committed myself to sharing my oxygen with this other person in turbulent seas.  My job:  Don't let go.  And breathe.

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