Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Being at Home


We have not been at home much since last Wednesday. We lead a pretty busy life, and if something untoward happens as it did last week, it can really knock us for six. You see, I already had a pretty full schedule. We had tickets to the wonderful show Peter Pan on Friday, Saturday we were heading up to Burton-on-Trent to see our hairdresser and Monday we were due to head back up there to the optician. (Yes, there are opticians where we live now(!) but we have been seeing this particular one since my son was tiny.) Of course, when my husband’s mum ended up in hospital we wanted to be with her as much as possible so spent Friday and Sunday in Kent. We had a lovely time on Sunday as she was at home then and it was so nice to have a good visit, and also to be able to cook for her and help her out a bit.

However, with the exception of last Thursday afternoon, the only time we were home over the last week was to sleep. So when things finally settled down yesterday, I really appreciated the chance to just be here. Today I am waiting in for a delivery, something I normally loathe, but actually, on this occasion I’m quite enjoying it. I’m just pottering around home doing some things that needed doing, along with writing and catching up on correspondence.

All this got me thinking about how full we all make our schedules these days. There never seems to be enough time to do everything we would like to, and we fill every moment with activity in an attempt to accomplish all the things we wish we could. Then when something does come along that either urgently requires our attention or we would really like to do at the last minute, it makes it almost impossible to accomplish - impossible, in fact, “to fit in”.

Most of us are practically genetically programmed not to say “no”. (Actually, I’m sure that is behavioral conditioning, but it feels like it is genetic!) So even if we are not over-scheduling ourselves, we allow others to over-schedule us. My husband’s work diary is so full it makes me exhausted just to look at it. I exhort him to try to balance his workload, and then find myself over-scheduling my own diary yet again. There are things I need or want to do, people I want to visit with and places I either want or need to go. I often feel like the white rabbit in Alice in Wonderland.

The late Eric Butterworth, a well known teacher, minister and author said, “One of the best things to do sometimes is simply to be.” I’m going to think about that more, and try to allow myself a bit more time to do just that.

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