Pace yourself

Life is a balancing act. It doesn’t start out that way. Little children don’t worry about how to fit everything in to the day, do they? They just live, moment to moment, in wonder and curiosity, absorbing all the beauty and information. “Input, input!” – as the robot Johnny Five says in the film ‘Short Circuit’ if you’re old enough to remember that one 😉

That’s what my husband loves too – every morning, first thing, sitting in front of his big Mac to read 3 or 4 different news sites, facebook, work emails and papers, all while catching up his latest new Spotify playlist, absorbing the many and various events and happenings into his large and insatiable brain. He sends me links the way his father sends newspaper cuttings: surely I must be interested?!

But I don’t have the capacity for all the extra stuff that fires him up – it overwhelms me. I need to be as quiet as possible and concentrate only on what is rising inside.  I have to take mornings very slowly, focussing on one thing at a time – the next right thing – just to stay at peace.  Because anxiety is the enemy and has been for a long time. The associated adrenaline coursing round our bodies is responsible for everything from bad temper to palpitations to cortisol release, which stores fat. I don’t want to be that person anymore. I need boundaries that, as the Bible says, “fall in pleasant places”. I prefer to identify with the sentiment found in Psalm 131 “I don’t concern myself with matters too great for me, but have quieted my soul like a weaned child with his mother ” 

All my life I have taken responsibility for far more than I should but at last I am learning not to.  At this point I am only really responsible for running our household and looking after myself and Martin, supporting our daughter, being a good friend and… well that’s a whole other blog post.  I realise this is the privilege of wealth and age, but it’s the season I am in.  In fact I actually have permission to enjoy this time of my life in a way I have not been able to in the past – like a second childhood (once more, a subject for another post)! Isn’t it precisely because children have no responsibility at all that they are so free to experience life as it comes at them?

IMG_4620 2
taken while writing this post!

Anyway, pacing myself is the key to all of this – choosing more wisely, living more freely, being at peace and feeling better. Coming back from a long break in France I’m trying to continue in that mode of relaxed living rather than make a lot of lists and tidy every room to within an inch of it’s life as I would ‘normally’ do. Having decided to focus on (taken on responsibility for? ;-)) the book writing, other things are going to have to remain undone. Plus, as we’ve been away, out of routine and obviously SO relaxed, I’ve been unusually disorganised and on Friday completely ran out of my anti-depressants! I’m therefore having to come off them (after 10 years!) rather precipitately.  In fact it seems a good opportunity to give that a try, because I don’t think I’m depressed any longer – obviously that remains to be seen.  So I’m happy to go with it, but there are a few nasty side-effects of the withdrawal making me very tired and intermittently unwell.

I can be kind to myself.  I have a good reason, yes? I can change my plans a bit 😉 So  I’ve given myself the gift of Monday and Tuesday to catch up a bit more and will now do my first ‘coffee shop session’ on Wednesday to start work on:  Sam son: a mother’s story of a unique young man and his brain tumour (working title)

Happily for my love of significant dates, that is Wednesday 1st May 🙂

3 thoughts on “Pace yourself

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