Wednesday, September 25

Too Busy?

The other day I posted on my Facebook status that I am entering my busy, hectic, crazy time of year, and I warned people in advance that I may be delayed in returning texts/calls/emails/etc.  I had several people respond back to me privately and ask if it was still okay that we got together for such and such activity; it made me sit back and think.  I had meant to just let people know I was busy and not ignoring them, but it came across that I was TOO busy and didn't put them as a priority.

That made me sad.

I was reminded to prioritize, which I feel like I do pretty well lately.  I (usually) have no problem putting my kids first and saying "no" to other activities which I might otherwise like to participate for the sake of spending much-needed down time with my husband or kids.  My clients are a top priority too- afterall they're paying me not only for my support during their labor and delivery but for prenatal support too, and I want to maintain a reputation as a quick-responder (that's important in this biz!).

Does that mean that everyone else comes last?  That well-meaning friends who have a quick question should get the last bit of me?  I hate to think of it that way!!!

The more I thought about it, the more I was reminded that I do waste a lot of time.   Facebook is my virtual water cooler, where I gather with my "coworkers" (other moms or other doulas) to catch up or ask a question.  I don't feel bad about that.  But in reality, I should probably cut back... and offer that time to those who have reached out to contact me.

Then the next day I was thinking that it's so odd that 20 years ago, we had three methods of contacting people: via a land line, mail, or just dropping by their home.  Now.  Sheesh.  Land line, cell phone, text, Facebook messenger, email on my phone, email on my computer, instant messenger, and I'm sure other ways I'm unaware of.  Maybe that's the problem, why I can't keep up with people- I can't remember how they contacted me!

Is this a matter of needing to downsize?  I really don't know how I'd manage my business without a smart phone.  I don't have a land line (though I think we'll need one in the next several years as the kids get older).  What else can I be rid of?  Really, I can't think of anything- I guess it's a matter of just being organized or having a better memory!

I am staying pretty organized these days though, overall.  My body loves my pregnancy hormones and for some reason I'm sleeping really well and feeling very well-rested in the mornings.  So, despite:
  • daily homeschooling
  • co-op Thursdays
  • after-school activities: Beth's soccer on Mondays, Luke's on Fridays, and two games on Saturdays; girl's club and boy's club; art classes; nature class; field trips (library, zoo, etc); and maybe an occasional play date
  • client meetings and births (2 left until I take my own maternity leave!)
  • typical house work (fall decorating!)
  • midwife and chiropractor appointments
  • preparing for birth days and holy days and liturgical seasons
I am really doing okay!  I know it sounds like a lot, but I have found that since I'm not feeling so exhausted in the mornings, I'm actually waking up earlier than the kids come downstairs.  I'm getting dressed, visiting with Ryan, making coffee and oatmeal, and sometimes even saying my morning prayers before I invite the kids to come down.  It's really made more time for me to get centered before the busy-ness of the day begins, and it's helped me have a better attitude throughout the day (or maybe that's those happy pregnancy hormones again!).

I do not expect it to be this way after baby comes.  Hey, let's be realistic here!

Today on Facebook I saw this article posted.  I nearly had to sit down- I thought the timing was pretty ironic given my post about being busy!  It gave me mixed feelings though, because though I use the word "busy" quite often, I don't feel like my life is out of control either.  I don't feel like I'm slammed or pulled in too many directions- at least not yet.  I schedule downtime for us- Charlotte Mason calls it "masterly inactivity."  "Wise and purposeful letting alone."  For example, today was our stay-at-home day, with no activities.  I considered scheduling a playdate but I'm glad I didn't; the kids went outside after breakfast and stayed outside until lunch time for a total of three hours of outdoor playtime.  Then they had lunch and a short rest time, we schooled after rest time, then they went back outside to have a snack and play more until Ryan came home.  I love that the weather is changing and the shadows are moving and they're happy to play outside again!

I am going to take the author's advice and try to say "busy" less often.  I will saunter and mosey (though I think I may need cowboy boots for that) and I will meander and linger.  I will try not to rush, but to be present in my moments.  Maybe then my mind will clear up enough that I can remember who is trying to reach me and what I need to do to address their calls.

Besides, if the kids do tomorrow what they did today, I will have plenty of time and no excuses to get my work and my playing done.  Today, for example, I organized my recipe binder, vaccumed and cleaned downstairs, rearranged a few things in my bedroom, went to the chiropractor, made these guys:

Schooled, read to the kids, and made a nicer-than-normal dinner.  I still need to get ready for co-op tomorrow.  I love this extra energy, and I'm going to take advantage of it while I can!

So I guess the point of my rambling is that while I have a busy calendar, I love y'all and I hope to make you more of a priority!  And I'm going to stay busy but also meander through my day.  And as I stare my third trimester in its face, I'm going to try to get healthier and hopefully keep up this good energy a little bit longer!

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