I remember, when I was younger I would spend hours listening to music, day dreaming, doodling, writing, and thinking. I am an outgoing person. I love to talk. I love to listen. I love to laugh. I also love to do those quiet activities–day dreaming, doodling, writing, and thinking. Especially thinking.
One of the hardest things for me, as a mom, is keeping that piece of me. I yearn for that quiet time. Truth is, even when I have the quiet time, it isn’t quiet. I either fall asleep or I lie awake with a to-do list running through my head. My mind is full. Always.
Lately, my mind is more full than usual.
I have the holiday to do list. The presents, the wrapping, the cleaning, the menu, the grocery list.
Of course, I have my mommy lists and the good wife list. Have to make sure everyone is where they are supposed to be when they are supposed to be there with the correct materials and even the right frame of mind to be successful for the day. The groceries, the house payment, who needs to be picked up, laundry, and what events we have planned for the night.
Lately, with the decline of my grandparents health, I have added lists. I try to make sure they are seeing the doctor, that they have medicine, that their daily medicine containers are filled, hygiene needs are met, and that they are getting some socialization. My mom and I split the lists as best we can. These are my lists.
I have the news running through my mind. As much as I try to avoid the troubling stories, how do you avoid 20 children being murdered. No one can put that aside. Pictures, worries, and grief roll through my head.
Lastly, I have my own list. Things I want to do for myself. Write, skin care, reading, normal hygiene, planning, tv, and time with friends would be nice.
My list, usually comes last. Because it comes last, often it just doesn’t happen. Many nights I can’t write. Sometimes I fall asleep without brushing my teeth or cleaning my face. Sometimes I barely hit my bed before I am falling asleep. If I do manage to get to my own list (like tonight), it is because I am giving up sleep (like tonight).
One would think having all this ‘stuff’ to do would make me feel important, needed, and wanted. It does…sometimes. If I am honest, though, most of the time, it makes me feel the opposite. There are many times I feel isolated and alone. It isn’t because people are ungrateful or because I don’t want to do these things. Neither of those things are true, although, sometimes I tell myself those lies out of frustration.
I feel alone because I have lost so much of me in this chaotic life. I have lost friends, or at least the ability to see them when I would like. And, being so busy, leaves me feeling like maybe I am losing my mind. My mind is too full to have one thought at a time. It’s like the thoughts are constantly interrupting each other. It leaves me feeling almost crazy at times. It’s as if I am losing my mind–literally, piece by piece.
What keeps me going is knowing everything is temporary. The holidays pass one by one. Kids grow up and grandparents pass on. There will come a day when I’ll be able to take vacations, visit friends, work out when I want, and go to bed anytime I feel like because I can sleep in as late as I would like. And that’s why, doing what I do is more important that my feelings.
So, even on the worst days, I try to stay mindful of my place. Mindful of how life works and mindful of how quickly it is all over.
Please be mindful of each other, even when you are mind-full. Strength, compassion, and faith is how we get through this world–together.