March Madness

By Lori Welch Brown

March Madness

Ever feel like your current situation is never going to change? That you’ll be stuck exactly where you are in this moment—whatever this moment is—Your abysmally single moment? Your pathetically broke butt, no money in your account, moment? Your pants don’t fit no matter how much you suck it in moment? Your boyfriend dumped you via a post-it moment? Your career is stuck at the corner of Goin’ Nowhere Street and Underpaid Avenue moment? Yeah, that moment. The hopeless moment that is so beyond frustrating that it deserves its own word. Any change feels like it would take a miracle from God or a winning lottery ticket. Becoming the next Mrs. Brad Pitt seems more likely than losing a dress size no matter how many trips to Gold’s you make. The mole hill is Mt. Everest and you are the ant standing at its base. The pounds feel like tons. The smallest goal feels like a glacier and your feet are rooted in quick sand. Your best move is to go back to bed and ruminate about everything that has gone wrong—everything that isn’t working. You curse your boss for your last performance review, curse your workout buddy for cancelling on you, curse Hillary for not being more likable, and even curse your parents for ever having that twinkle in their eye that resulted in your birth. This, my friends, is March Madness. And you thought it had something to do with hoops and balls? Tsk, tsk.

March is a cold-hearted woman. She will break you if you let her. Unlike May, June and July that fly off the calendar, March is like watching your ex make out with your pretty cousin. It is beyond maddening, and it feels like it will never end. The only way to make it out alive is by taking little, tiny baby steps. Start by getting out of bed and putting one foot in front of the other. Take it easy. Cut yourself some slack. Move a little slower. Rest a little more. Take naps. Write letters. Read a book. Throw an extra log on the fire and hunker down with some chili. I swear I think St. Patrick threw in a day of drinking just to give us something to look forward to during the dismalness that is March. Carpe diem, folks. March is winter’s final hoorah, and it feels like she is gonna drag last call out forever.

While it may feel like you’re on the road to nowhere, change is around the corner. And no matter how long March feels, rest assured that change is a’comin. The light at the end of the tunnel is almost here. They say March is the hardest month, and I think ‘they’ are right. I’ve been working furiously—or at least it feels like it—at chipping away at a couple of personal goals and I just don’t seem to be making any head way. Some days it feels like no matter how hard I try….Sigh. The pointer doesn’t move. The scale isn’t budging. The barometer isn’t rising. I get nothing. Zilch. Zippo. So what’s the point? Why try at all? Because I’m assured that this plateau can’t last forever. Nothing does. March is the yin of the yang. Before you know it, the sky is going to be azure blue again, the songbirds are going to be belting out their morning melodies, and we’ll be singing, “looks like we made it” from the rooftops. Oh how we’ve missed you, Barry. Soon we will be picking out our Easter bonnets and dusting off our beach chairs. We will be yang’ing our butts all over the place. And—if we kept moving through March, hopefully those butts will be just a wee bit smaller in time for bathing suit season. Sorry, March. I’m a summer girl.

In the meantime, think slow and steady. Think baby steps. Think tortoise—that hare didn’t stand a chance. Go to your Crayola box, grab your your brightest, happiest crayon and color the crapola out of something. Brighten your world any darn way you can and tell March to kiss your you know what. Progress is being made even if you can’t readily see it or feel it. Trust that the glacier is melting just a little bit each day—just not at the speed you’d like it to. Remember—it’s only a month, not a lifetime. Find some joy. April, are you here yet?

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