Friday, September 11, 2009

Taking a break from the world

My life was pretty hectic last month and I felt that I just needed to go off the radar for a while in order to get back to the basics.

It was like a mental health day, I guess, except that it was extended for a couple of weeks!

I stopped work, apart from one job where I had a deadline (a perk of being self-employed). I had just joined twitter, but I had to drop it; I stopped going online on a daily basis. I didn't watch tv, read the paper, or listen to the radio.

I started going to bed before 11pm.

I played with the kids, instead of just throwing them into the backyard and leaving them to it.

I read books and made up additional silly stories for my daughters at bedtime. I sat with them until they fell asleep, instead of calling out from in front of the computer, "Go to sleep!".

I cooked a simple, tasty dinner every night, baked a chocolate cake, took my eldest daughter for a long walk, connected with my husband, and read a book.

I discovered a new periodical (new to me anyway) which is not as 'too-intellectual' for me as I had always thought.

I organised play dates for the kids, and invited some neighbours over for the first time, for afternoon tea. I spent time with one of my goddaughters.

I decluttered the house and got the car washed. (I know it was washed during the last 18 months, because I've done it since we've been in this house, I just don't know when exactly. Maybe 18 months ago!)

I've been trying to live in the moment. And I've been thinking. A lot of the time I assume that I am thinking, when what I am really doing is either fretting or fantasising.

I've been reflecting and praying for the wisdom to see what is really important in my life; what just needs a little re-jigging, and what might need a complete paradigm-shift.

I realised that I've just been adding lots of little things, and big things (ie. three gorgeous children, with my husband) to my life, in a fairly haphazard way.

With all the additions I'd lost sight of the beautiful and simple vision of life that my husband and I had when we married seven years ago; a happy family life, a warm, welcoming home where there are book-lined walls, and music, and great conversation. And a bit of overseas travel from time to time, some great furniture, an art collection. See? I keep slipping into fantasy again!

I've also been trying to do the supermum/career and family balance thing with little day-to-day help apart from my husband (who has his own demanding full time job). I have kept trying, even though I know, I know, that it just does not work. At least, not without someone losing out.

So in taking time to reflecting on all this, cutting out a lot of mental clutter in order to do so, I feel that I've gone some way to getting my house in order (literally and metaphysically).

I've still a lot to do, but I'm going to try to take my time and not feel that I have to 'get it right' all at once.

Now, enough about me for a while. I'm looking for people to interview on this blog. If you know of anyone with similar interests in simple living, living mindfully, or balancing family and personal aspirations (work/art/whatever), or if you would like to put your own hand up, please drop me a line.

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  1. Marilyn, I know exactly what you mean. I am writing an article for "Footprints" today on when it's GOOD to be BORED ... inspired by a two week holiday with my family, with no computer, books, etc ... we HAD to spend time together and it was THE BEST!!!

    love Janet xxx

    PS thanks for stopping by my blog too :-)

  2. It's great when that happens, isn't it?

  3. hi Marilyn , very thought provoking ...
    I had similar thoughts and ideas but I can only manage a weekend away from my internetz.
    I have been limiting my time here though and
    I have been reading a few of these type posts lately.
    I am taking my time too to enjoy my children more and enjoy real life more.
    I hope it all works out for you.

  4. Good for you, isn't it nice to take time away and then look at life again through fresh eyes.



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