Who are you if you're not busy?
In many ways, my life has had more ease to it lately. It feels a little wild to say that considering we have a 3 year old and a 6 month old and a business and a full time job and a home and friends and family, and we are navigating life in the midst of a global health crisis.
But it does. It was one of my first intuitions about Ruthie when she came to us… I felt the energy of slow ease she brought to our family, and it was a welcome change from my stressful pregnancy with her.
Take our mornings, for example.
Most mornings, I don’t wake up to an alarm. I wake naturally… or I wake to one of my babies. I’m still up 1-2x during the night with Ruthie, so this feels nice. Sometimes Ruthie will come in bed with us, nurse, and then she and I will fall back asleep for a bit together cuddled up, which is pretty much the best. Most mornings we don’t rush out of bed - we take our time adjusting to the day. Micah joins us when he wakes, we snuggle in bed, maybe we watch something, we talk. Then we go downstairs, and Jono makes us all breakfast as we sit at the breakfast bar in our pjs, rubbing the sleep from our eyes. I sip my coffee and mentally anticipate (anxiety-free most days) what the day holds, as I consult my calendar. I feed Ruthie her oatmeal, and we all hope Micah eats his eggs. We may FaceTime family, we may not. Whatever feels right.
Breakfast and dinner are the 2 meals we always eat together as a family; there are few exceptions, and it feels right for this time in life.
We don’t usually leave the house for work anymore, because, well, Covid world. So there’s even ease there as we don’t have to fight Atlanta traffic, parking garages, other people (I mean, it has to be said…).
Without the hustle of getting all the way dressed (hello leggings and sweaters!), packing food, my breast pump, and everything I think I could need for the day, I can ground myself in my home space and show up even more clearly for my clients. It just feels so right. I look forward to sessions…I come to them with a peace I’m not sure I’ve ever had in my work. And as a result, my practice is flowing with people who are a perfect fit for me and me for them. Wild, magical connections happen every day.
Ok, hard stop.
I feel incredibly self conscious sharing this with you.
I find myself wanting you to know that NO, not every day is this idyllic (at least my introverted version of idyllic). We have the usual stressors and conflicts and most nights, Jono and I are both exhausted to our core as we collapse on the couch together to watch some Succession and eat popcorn. I want to acknowledge our privilege to be able to work from home, to have supportive people in our life who help with our kids and with the maintenance of our home. I want to say, “Oh yeah, I’m sure it will change when the kids get older…when they get to school…when they start sports….”
But if I’m going to show up authentically, this is the ME you have to see now.
This me isn’t being pulled ahead by this energy of MORE, MORE, MORE….PUSH, PUSH, PUSH.... BUSY, BUSY, BUSY!
This me is trying to free myself from that achievement-driven, “success"-oriented mentality that slowly drains a life of it's magical presence. I should know- I have experienced it. I was anxious, depressed, depleted, and my body felt like it was always humming with a sort of unwelcomed anticipation of the next thing, the next thing, the next thing. During the day, I counted down to the time of night I could put on my pjs, disconnect with a glass of red wine on the couch, a show, and maybe even some social media.
I don't have to do that as much anymore...the disconnection part. My hunch is that because it feels so good to be with myself in ease and compassion throughout the day, I don't want to go away.
Even in my sharing this with you now, I find myself thinking “It shouldn’t be as it is. Things should be harder, right? I should be more stressed…I should be BUSY…life should feel chaotic. There should be a fool-proof and productive morning self care routine that starts at 4am and includes alone time, a strenuous workout, and definitely a meditation and journaling."
Instead, I'm here to tell you that the workouts are even more gentle as I listen to my body. Right now, more days than not, the rhythm of my life is my meditation, and I'm ok with that. Journaling consists of locking myself in the bathroom for a few minutes to voice text some words to a note on my Iphone.
And this feels good to me most days. My body can't handle that hustle (hello adrenal fatigue), and my soul definitely cannot.
And yet there are still many moments I think I need to do more, be more, produce more. Old programming, y'all...sometimes it takes a while to heal.
For now, I sit in the in between. Simultaneously enjoying the ease and also noticing the parts of me that still resist it.
Maybe you straddle those two worlds too as we navigate our pandemic reality.
I think that’s ok for us, because look. At least we’re paying attention. At least we can see BOTH worlds now - the slower, ease-filled one and the crazy, busy-making resistance to it.
At least we can see.