My son and his friends enjoy playing online games together, and the other day I overheard him ask, “Why am I so encumbered?” What he meant was he was weighed down by the items his character was carrying, but it struck me that I’ve been encumbered too, if not by physical objects, at least by the maintenance of myself, the people in my family, and our stuff.
I have constant running to-do lists, one for work and one for home, and I realized I rarely feel a sense of accomplishment on either of them because there’s always more to do. Now that the boys have constant homework and activities, it feels like life has gotten infinitely more complicated. They are big enough to help out around the house, and they do, but there are three people’s schedules running through my head at all times and most events have to be scheduled weeks in advance to happen.
I’m working out how to enjoy my days and savor them, despite all of the parts that make me tired and sometimes weigh me down. Even though I can’t stand the idea of looking at one more list, I had to make one to remind me of all the good little routines that pull me up like helium-filled balloons. Here’s mine and I’d love your suggestions too.
- Every morning, I look forward to my same breakfast (coffee and raisin bread toast with peanut butter) and reading a few chapters from the Bible. That is often my only quiet time in an entire day!
- At least one meal where I sit down with my boys. It’s usually dinner, but even if it’s breakfast or lunch, we talk and find out what’s going on with each other.
- Time with my loved ones to go for walks, work on a New York Times crossword, or watch a movie. These are a few of the moments where my mind isn’t running on hyperspeed.
- Going to sleep at night. Usually it’s more like passing out from exhaustion, but I treasure those few minutes where I’m warm under the covers. I love my bed.
- Listening to RadioLab podcasts on the way to and from work. This amazing show has opened my world to so many new ideas I would have missed in my myopic little world.
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If you enjoy reading my blog, please check out my first novel, Giving Myself Away, about a divorced mom making tough choices and a fresh start.