Saturday, May 17, 2008

Doing Too Much

If we're supposed to "simplify our lives" I have failed today. Sunny May weekends are prime––EVERYTHING you wait for all year happens then. I had a plan but it was hard to decide. I told my husband at breakfast: "There is a cottage home tour and the art fair and a plant sale and a fundraising walk and a neighborhood garage sale. For starters." I could think of more but decided not to share––he already had a blank look. I wanted to ride my bike and garden (before the weeds took over) and play tennis with Sarah. I had to run. I needed to finish three sewing projects. There was the obligatory trip to the grocery store and the bank. Sarah wanted to visit the library and eat at Qdoba. ("Mom, you missed the mother's day lunch at school and we never eat out.") You get the picture.

This is what my mom calls Doing Too Much. She will call on the phone, "You aren't doing Too Much?" are you?" There is a tone, as if I've done something negligent and evil. "Nah, not me, not this time," my voice pitching higher. Overdoing (I'm wincing) is something I've done since birth. At age ten I was already overwhelmed with my own neighborhood newspaper, fashion designs and card catalog for my books. I was also writing a novel.

It is a bad habit (ingrained). Yes, I know. But in my defense, I love this fullness. This blessed taking in and enjoying as much as I can-ness. 

And today, I could've just sat on the deck and relaxed, reading (I would've liked that, too). But there was the breezy run with maple seeds scattered at my feet. Enjoying Sarah poke seeds into the ground and hearing Matt say "gardening." Finishing a purse for someone else to love as much as I love mine. Overfilling a tote bag with tantalizing library books. And who doesn't like crossing things off a list?

The truth is that this evening, the kids started screaming, whacking each other in the garden. After a little bit, I started screaming, too. We all went inside and talked. There seemed something terribly wrong with screaming around such beauty. That's when I realized that doing one more thing was not going to make any of us happy. Doing everything we'd done all day was not what made us happy, it was the little quiet moments, with each other, sandwiched in-between all that doing.

Tomorrow is another day, they say. I have plans but have also no plans. And it will all be good.


amywb said...

Although I would "like" to simplify my life (as I posted!), I definitely prefer your version of a day! Here's to cramming in way too much good stuff! :)

amywb said...

p.s. How do you keep your house so clean and tidy?