Thursday, November 1, 2012

Time on my Hands

Rare occurrence for me this week – time on my hands... I tend to be in constant motion – between kids' activities and my own schedule we so rarely have time to just do nothing for long periods of time. This week is the school Fall Break (something we never did growing up but we very much enjoy now!) and for the last two years the kids and I have gone exploring around the area. One year we went to Estes Park and hiked in Rocky Mountain National Park; last year we visited a good friend in the Vail area and biked, hiked and explored her new stomping grounds. This year – the kiddos spent time with their dad, which left me with time on my hands.... Yes, I could have canceled my vacation time and headed to work (this would have been my nurse's first choice as her workload increases considerably if I am not there) but instead I decided to attempt some time just for me.

Day one was easy to fill – I spent much needed time with my college roommate. She lives just an hour away but we rarely manage more than a visit every 6 months or so. We talked non-stop for the afternoon and barely touched on all the topics that needed covering. She is one of those people in my life that I can go months without seeing and we pick up the conversation almost right where it was left off... Day two was easy too – well, until dinner time. I spent much of the day with another friend – baking and doing little chores that seem to be easier with a friend. But as dinner time rolled around it was hard to consider cooking for one; and how to fill those hours between dinner and bed – hours normally spent in homework or breaking up fights over the remote...

As the week has rolled on I became introspective over these empty hours. We as a culture are often so busy that unscheduled time becomes scary. I found myself feeling like I still needed to fill those hours with productive activity – cleaning the grill, preparing the patio for winter, typing a blog post... And I felt guilty if I chose to just sit in the sun and read my book (maybe not too guilty – I have a sunburn to show for that “lazy time”). So rarely do we take the time to just be still, to take in what is happening around us, and to reflect rather that react.

In the long run I am sure I will pay a price next week when I return to work with all the things that will be waiting for me... But as the week winds down I am thankful for this time of quiet, unscheduled activity before we go into the Holiday rush, before ski season starts and we are back on the run. Now, all that said – time to get moving – there is laundry to get started, errands to run, homework to accomplish...

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