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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Make Space

I hate cleaning out my closets

I'd rather give an impromptu speech in a foreign language naked in front strangers broadcast on international television.  I know, right?!?

member of the amazing EMERGE team
and yet every changing season I must. Seven people live here and we have four closets (feel sorry for me?). So I must locate the too small & off season clothes and make room for what will fit & cooperate with the pending extreme weather here in the Midwest.

In yesterday's blog I encouraged readers to "make space" in their life for meaningful relationships.

That is easier said than done.
I should know.

Recently, I was asked "How do you do it?"
Wife. Mother to 5 children (including twins). Work outside the home. Work inside the home. Go out to lunch. Read a book. Write. Blog. Sleep. Clean. Cook. Play.....

Honestly, it's not the first time I've been asked that.
Sometimes that bothers me.
Because I don't -emphasis on DON'T- have all my ducks in a row. My life is NOT perfect. My days are hard and long and exhausting and grueling and dissatisfying and I've developed a heel spur that might drive me directly to Nervous Breakdown-ville, a locale I've been working very hard not to visit.

Sure, I have my systems. I have schedules set into place. I've trained my kids to do their own laundry. But I've not got THE answer for how working/mothers/women/wives do it (I assure you if I had I'd have written about it by now and my kids' college education fund would be, um, you know ... in existence).

But this I know. This I remember:
I am not what I do.
I am not the laundry
cook
cleaning lady
taxi cab driver.
I am not the parent educator
wanna be writer
wife of Aaron
who's happy existence balances upon my successful completion of the tasks in my life.

I am Stephanie.
And when I am feeling like I am forgetting that I am a person - I go about making space.
It's not easy.
I sorta hate it like I hate cleaning out our closets.
But I do it.
I carve out time, a lunch date perhaps, an hour with a good book, a delicious chocolate cake recipe or even walk the dog.
I make space in my life to be me.
Not mom.
Not wife.
Just me.

Does that make me feel guilty? Yes.
Does my family understand that I need it? Of course not.
Do I make a big deal out of it and throw fits if I don't get it? No.
But I find the time when I can.
Even though it makes the laundry pile up or dinner comes from a box -
I find time, make space, to be me.
It's not often.
And I certainly hardly ever found a way to make space when I had wee ones, but now that the kids are getting older, now that I can slip out for a few minutes here and there ....

I have found great value in making space.
I encourage you to do the same.

What are some ways you have made time in your life for what's important to you? Please share! 

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