Pausing Among The Chaos
Consistency is imperative if we are to live a fulfilling life. Persistence is often a significant factor in making sure we are consistent because we have to start repeatedly without it. Sounds like dieting right? You have the best intentions and then you eat the piece of cake on Wednesday causing you to decide the whole week is ruined and vow to start again on Monday. I fear my good intentions of writing more consistently have been just those…intentions. While we have been practicing consistency, the only thing we are is consistently busy.
Here is a recap from where we left off:
March started with a job change for JR, pneumonia for Baylor, and a trip to Disney Live for me and Marleigh to kick off Spring Break. Lots of Easter Egg Hunts and spending time with family for the holiday and celebrating our risen Lord! JR and I also celebrated our 8-year anniversary.
In April, I turned 31 and we celebrated Baylor’s first birthday with a Beatrice Potter theme. I had planned to have it outside in this sweet little garden where JR works, but it rained and rained for days causing us to bring it inside. April Showers bring May flowers…..I know, I know I should have known!
May brought Marleigh’s Preschool Graduation complete with little caps and gowns and sweet songs that made everyone cry.
Marleigh turned five in June and our summer began! This was my first summer to be home with my kids full time in years (Marleigh went to daycare two days a week in the summer for three years) and I was excited and overwhelmed. We made it somehow! We filled this month up with swimming lessons, music class, cake camp, and VBS. I also performed in the community theater's production of The Producers while JR worked tech for it. June was a busy month for us to say the least!
July felt like a blur…it started and then it was over. Most of this month JR was working with the Young Artist Theater, a class were students learn the ins and outs of theater, on their show Madagascar. Some of JR’s extended family came to visit, we took a trip to Waco, TX to visit The Silos (worth it on every level) and visit the Texas family, Marleigh danced, more music class, and before we knew it, we were buying school supplies for the first time.
If July was a blur, August was a blink. JR was working with the Young Artist Theater on a show called Hamilpalooza. Baylor and I started back to school/work on the first leaving Marleigh home with her papa for a week before her school started. I think they were both sad when the week ended. I did not expect to cry when I dropped her off at school for the first day. I mean after all, I had dropped her off at daycare and preschool many times before and knew it really was not any different. Yet, somehow, it was and it was an ugly cry.
We are now at the end of September. We have had a book fair, dance clinic, dance class, Nutcracker tryouts, several birthday parties, too many late nights, strep throat, missed music classes, and her first progress report (this made me more nervous that it should have). Did I mention we are still renovating the house (more than two years from when we started)? JR has wrapped Akeelah and the Bee and life will be peaceful for a few weeks before Hunchback of Notre Dame ramps up.
We are blessed beyond measure, happy, and busy. I love being busy. I think I almost thrive on it. I do not do well to sit at home for very long and even when I do, I am still thinking about what I could be out doing. In the thrill of being busy, I think I sometimes forget to pause and really “look at each other.”
Over the past week or so, I have had the opportunity to pause, look into my chaos, and begin processing how to simplify it. I have been reflecting on Emily Webb’s monologue from Our Town. For context in case, you are not familiar with it: Emily, having just died in childbirth, is not quite ready to stop living yet so she asks to experience another day. She is cautioned to choose an “unimportant” day because it would be important enough. She chooses her 12th birthday. She cannot handle how mundane the day is and the following is her response to it all…
“I can't bear it…I cant look at everything hard enough… Oh, Mama, just look at me one minute as though you really saw me…Let's look at one another…I can't. I can't go on. It goes so fast. We don't have time to look at one another…I didn't realize. All that was going on in life and we never noticed…Oh, earth, you're too wonderful for anybody to realize you. Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it? - every, every minute?”
I know that there will never be enough minutes in the day. I know that I cannot keep my kids little forever nor do I want to keep them from growing up, but I want to live in the present. I want to stop telling my kids to “hurry up.” I want those precious few hours between the end of school/work and bedtime to be more meaningful. I want to look into their beautiful blue eyes and “really see them” in all their silliness, frustrations, hopes, dreams, shortcomings, everything.
So I think I’ll take some time to pause amongst the chaos a little longer. It’s a sweet place to be.