sorting out time

my days.jpg

Once upon a time, a color coded calendar hung on the refrigerator. As a homeschooling mother of nine, I reached for any tool that keep our family functioning well. Meals, laundry, housecleaning, school time, play time were all carefully  scheduled into the day. It was survival and it was a way to give time to all the things and all the people. 

Until the day that I realized I was choking the very life out of us. We weren't meant to live by the clock, to the hour, to the minute. It was all about control. I was clinging to anything that would give me some sense of control in my life. I let go. I loosened my grip and I let go. We relaxed. We laughed more. And maybe I was less serious. Maybe. I've always been a serious person but I think that's a post for another day. 

As it is now, I am missing the structure of ordered days. I have so much that I want to do, that I need to do. Boxes and lists and schedules call to me. I want to lay it all out on a grid and pound myself into place. That's not the answer. That will just leave me feeling achy and bruised.

I recently wrote somewhere that my soul is beating and I am want to step in alignment to that tempo. I believe it. In the same way that I paid attention to the natural rhythms my babies settled into, I am paying attention to myself. I am  noticing where my most energy is present. I am noticing what I reach for on my good days and what I reach for on my bad days. It is all useful to know. 

Who I am is a tangled mess right now. I ask myself, almost every day, am I an artist? am I a writer? am I a woman who gathers the kindred? I feel like I need to sort all of that out so that I can sort out how to spend my time. But as I type these words, I am remembering lingering conversations with a friend on Saturday. She shared how she has been compartmentalizing herself into roles and this year she is reaching for wholeness. Hmmmm. Little messages returned to me when I need them. 

I end today's writing with no more answers than when I sat down but I am carrying forth paying attention, taking note. My soul holds the key, the way of being. It is one of ease. When you are being who you are there is no need for striving. 

Days begin and end in the dead of night. They are not shaped long, in the manner of things which lead to ends – arrow, road, man’s life on earth. They are shaped round, in the manner of things eternal and stable – sun, world, God.
— jean giono