Things change and get strange
With this movement of time.
It’s happening right now to you.
(Avett Brothers, Down With the Shine)
Each month, each week, each day, each hour – it’s the same and it’s different.
Time goes and it slips and it sloshes and it wraps me up in tangles and it finds me sitting at the kitchen table for hours making lesson plans and it pushes me into meetings for work and propels me down hiking trails with my children and it keeps me up late and has me rising early.
It’s time. It’s balance. It’s never enough and always too much. And it’s the same for me and it’s the same for you.
There is no “doing it all”. There is no “having it all”. That’s a myth and a deception. Something always has to give. Something must take the backseat. And I try to shift what that is, from time to time, through each season. I try to rotate what gets gently stored higher on the shelf. Sort of how I used to treat my stuffed animals as a kid – ever aware that someone was missing out, I would rotate the time I spent with them, apologizing to the stuffed bear and the underplayed with doll when it wasn’t their turn. (This is actual truth – I’m hoping some other adult can relate to these childhood actions.) I do the same now. I try to close the computer down when one of my children says, “Mom, come look” and I try to close the book when I am invited to play a board game or sit on the porch with a friend or a child.
I ask myself the same questions over and over, day in and day out, situation after situation.
Do I want to raise up kind humans or do I want to raise up a business?
Do I want to make memories with my kids or do I want to make a name for myself?
Do I want to build a reputation or do I want to build a family?
The answers are surprisingly simple to me when I frame my life choices this way.
It’s what helps me to say no to writing another blog post or to agreeing to another project at work. To taking on tasks that would benefit me professionally but train wreck my house.
I want to choose relationship over productivity. And I am willing to pay the price that such a choice requires.