The gift of time

Just over a month ago I rather impulsively rented a house not too far from here for a weekend’s respite.  I was feeling so pressed in on, so weary and desperate for some room to breathe.  The pull of homeschool and all the rest of life weighs heavy around March or so every year.  We aren’t finished yet but the daily grind has been grinding for quite some time.  So I suppose ground down sums up how I felt quite nicely.

Chris was gracious in the face of my declaration that I needed a break.  He knows how hard I work and he is faithfully, relentlessly and sacrificially giving of himself the minute he walks in the door from work every day.  Truth be told, he probably could use a break too.  But he didn’t say a word, simply “yes”.  If I’d had the sense, I’d have done better planning little bits of time here and there to rest throughout the year thus far, but I didn’t, so that was that.

I said more than once, almost apologetically, “I just need to think in full sentences for more than five minutes, to truly R-E-S-T.”  Honestly I wanted more than anything to have dedicated time set apart for my cup to be refilled so that I could continue giving at this capacity.  The level of output motherhood requires is far beyond anything I could have imagined.  And I’m in this for the long, very long, lifelong, haul.  The only way I can do that with any measure of grace and sanity is listening to my heart when it feels this way.

Up until the week before I wasn’t sure if any friends would join me while I was away, but three did, and it was such a gift.  We ventured around quaint Coupeville on Whidbey Island and conversed and rested.  I’ve been holding out on posting because I have some really fun photos too but the computer isn’t working right now on the photo-front.

My takeaway from the weekend is tough to hone down into one thing.  But learning to listen to my heart/body/mind and knowing when I’m over the top and absolutely need to step back a bit from life so that I can keep going, it’s worth doing.  The payoff for everyone in my life but especially my family is so great.  In leaving and listening, I was actually loving them well.  Strange, but true.

In my dreams I came home, rested, refreshed mama who tossed her head at the shenanigans of her children and magically got the house in tip top shape.  But alas, when I woke up today, people still complained about breakfast options, someone spilled milk (and cried loudly about it!) before I’d even had my coffee, Finn still woke up WAY too early, there is stuff from the trip stuffed in the back of the van and the floor is in terrible need of a mopping.  Since it’s spring break I thought I’d give a try at the old “stay in my pajamas till after lunchtime”.  But sadly, that only left me wanting to live under a fuzzy green blanket on the couch and not talk to anyone.  Which really works poorly when there are five people who look to me for direction on a minute to minute basis!

*I finally got some of my friend Shauna’s pictures to load at least!*
Quaint really is the right word, don’t you think?