There’s always something to do.
It never really ends. Three weeks after my baby was born I went back to school to finish my final year of my Masters degree. Three weeks after that I went back to work—20 hours a week from home. For months I said, “As soon as things settle down and I leave my job, I’ll do____.” I imagined my life would get quiet and slow down and I’d have lots of time to fill. Time to have coffee with friends, take trips to the Rio, go for lunch with mentors, write, edit, write, write, and write. Time to just be a mom and myself and do the things I need to be me. I kept waiting for the perfect time to have MY time.
The unexpected is everpresent. Expect it.
I left my job in March. It seemed all the time I planned to use got used up by a more demanding, more mobile baby, my dissertation, taxes, etc. My mantra became “as soon as I finish defending my dissertation in April.” Then I went away for the weekend, got help up north by a snowstorm, got pink eye, and finals hit. And then it was “the day after I graduate.”
I graduated in May. Three days later I drove 13 hours with my baby and dog to Houston to help my parents with their post-Harvey home renovation fiasco. I got pink eye-again. I came home, had appointments, deadlines, and prepped for one thing after another. There’s always something getting in the way of my ideally organized, quiet life.
It never really ends. Life is a ceaseless ebb and flow of busyness and things to do. Time will always get filled by something. I’m an excellent time manager, but I still regularly feel out of control of my own time.
Be in charge of your time.
The only way to guarantee you do the things you want and need is to carve them into your schedule and do them, because “as soon as everything settles down” never really comes. If you have a book you’ve been wanting to read, or write, or you’ve been waiting to start your new workout regime, start now. Decide on a MY time. Maybe it’s first hour of baby’s nap for doing your thing. Put it in your calendar in pen and do it! Regardless of the laundry, dishes, garden, menu planning, or whatever else is calling you, do your thing. Because everything will still be there when you’re done–that’s a timeless truth–but you’ll feel better if you’ve made time for the things you need. Living is a busy endeavor and a glorious one. But you have to be in charge of your MY time. Because it never really ends unless you end it.