Shortly after having my twin sons I remember wondering how could I have ever thought BC (before children) that I was ever, really busy. What in the world had I been doing with all my time?
Suddenly every minute was filled with feedings and diapers and crying – although a lot of the crying was me.
Going anywhere required thoughtful reconnaissance and planning. The car looked like a family going on a two-week vacation when it was only packed to get to the caregiver’s or to Grandma’s for a weekend.
And as the children grew, the schedule required more juggling.
There were school events and doctor and dentist appointments, soccer and baseball games, music lessons and recitals, birthday parties and play dates.
And someone was always selling something, which meant I was always selling something. And shopping, always shopping because they outgrew shoes in the blink of an eye. And I want to think about how many mittens or gloves I bought over the years.
Then the youngest was born and the busyness just multiplied.
A friend with two young children recently was sharing a story about a particularly harried Saturday when she was trying to get to her daughter’s soccer game and her son’s piano recital without losing her mind.
“Hang in there,” I told her. “It will get easier.”
And it does, but it happens when you aren’t really paying attention. It just goes from being so busy that you feel like you’re being pulled in seven directions to being regularly busy. You know, work, housework, friends, clubs, golf dates.
Suddenly you have time to meet friends for dinner or to play golf without worrying that you’re missing a baseball game or a three-hour dance recital. Massage – of course there’s time for that. Poker with friends, certainly. No plays or Friday night football games anymore – so why not.
For years, my nights were filled with worrying about curfews and punishments if the curfew was missed. When my children became licensed drivers, the worrying grew like a bad monster movie. But we got through it all, we made it.
I look back now in wonder. How in the world did my brain juggle all that stuff? Today I forget a lunch date unless it’s written down in three places.
Recently someone asked if I could do something and I said “I don’t know, I’m really so busy this weekend.”
No, I wasn’t. Not really. I had time for a pedicure and time to read a book. I had time to clean out a closet and sort through some old photos.
I’ve just become used to having more time and it’s hard to give up when it comes back around. And it does come back, for a while.
But I better enjoy the pedicures and reading time while I can. My first grandchild arrives in September and I see soccer in my future.
Image credit: williami5