Is that title to vague-book-y? I couldn’t come up with anything better at the moment.
See, here’s the thing. In most of life, I find myself juggling many jobs. I was thinking about it today, in the midst of being stressed out and grumpy for no particular reason. On a typical day, I work a lengthy “first shift” – a regular morning and school day – followed by a second shift of the after school + dinner + bedtime craziness, and then a third shift of housework or rehearsal or organ practice or… before collapsing into bed so I can get up and do it all again. I realize these are not all paying jobs, per se, but you know what I mean. It’s the juggling, the wearing of hats, with precious few opportunities to turn off and be still. I’m certainly not claiming that this is unique to my life; we all have our hats to wear and shoes to fill. Whatever one’s personal circumstances, the bottom line is that we find ourselves drawn in a million different directions. There’s always something else to be done, someone else who needs us, somewhere else to be.
Confession: I love the newborn baby stage. Why? Because during that time, I have one job: to take care of the baby. That’s it. Baby’s hungry? OK, sit down and feed the baby. There is nothing else I should be doing. Sweet simplicity.
There’s the fact that there isn’t a damn person in this world who expects more of me at this moment—and if they do, I truly don’t have to give a damn.
My one job is to care for this tiny person, who also has nowhere else to be. No schedule, playdates, meetings, work or friends, or desire to be anywhere else but here. He doesn’t know anyplace else. He doesn’t care. It’s just me and him.
-Alessandra Macaluso, “Why I’m Loving the Sleep-Deprived, Newborn Stage“
So that got me thinking. What if, in the midst of my over-scheduled, over-committed life, I was able to have that same mindset about wherever I am, whatever I’m doing? What if, instead of spending my school day being stressed about cramming in all of the after-school things before rushing off to a rehearsal for which I am once again under-prepared, I could just keep my mind on what I’m doing right then and there? What if, when the baby needs me at 4:45 am, I could just sit back and enjoy the early morning snuggles, instead of anxiously calculating how short my night was and worrying about how tired I will be all day?
I’m afraid that our close friend ANXIETY will stand in the way, but it’s worth a try.