Time is one elusive commodity, isn’t it? Every day I aspire to make the best use of it because I hate the thought of days just disappearing…but they do…day after day after day. To help me with my time, I make lists. They help me to aim, focus, and shoot, as well as be able to look at my day and help me see what I actually did.
Historically, I am such a list-maker that my husband jokingly gave me the Native American name of Stands With A List (this will only make you smile if you are a Dances with Wolves fan). But lately even my lists seem problematic. They don’t even begin to reflect my real daily rundown.
In this stage of my life, I feel like all too often I am busy all day, but when the day is over I think, “What exactly did I accomplish?” The reality of one day blurring into the next is something I can’t seem to shake. Working primarily from home only exacerbates the problem—all of the roles I play converge into one.
I can categorize many of my days into “trances” or “ballets.” Both are days of fluid movement…waking to emails, work, taking care of the kid, laundry, caregiving to my mom, work, calls, errands, caregiving, work, groceries…you get the idea. The only real distinction between the two is whether or not I am fully “awake.”
Trance days have me doing something like folding laundry in the afternoon thinking, “It’s 3:00?!?! How did that happen? I haven’t stopped once today, but I can’t remember a thing I’ve done.” These days are almost like a zombiewalk—I am an automaton going through the mundane motions of daily life.
A ballet day, on the other hand, can have the exact same itinerary, but instead I am folding that same damn laundry thinking, “Okay, so I’ve done A, B, and C, and I’m ready to hit D, E, and F.” I glide through my ToDos feeling like I’m making progress. I jeté from one task to the next. (Yes, jeté…that’s right. Remember? I’m using a ballet metaphor. Stick with me.)
Lately, though, the trance days are slaughtering the ballet days, and I don’t know why. It does not thrill me to spend time in Zombieland. Unfortunately, it appears I’m unable to will myself into a daily performance of Swan Lake. I’ve tried when I feel the trance upon me, but it’s not a flippable switch. Perhaps a local meth dealer can help spur me on to greater heights. If it wasn’t for the ratty teeth aspect, I just might consider it.
Can you tell what kind of a day I’m having? That’s right—I’m stuck in a trance. If I wasn’t, I would know how to wrap this post up in a way that might offer a ray of hope or two. Instead I’ll just offer up the old mantra of “this, too, shall pass.” The only problem is, the “this” is another day, and I don’t know how many of them I have left to pass. Geez, Debbie Downer, hands off the keyboard. Let’s leave you for Scarlett O’Hara and remember that “tomorrow is another day.” (Debbie wants to add on “or is it??”)
So tell me…am I all on my own in this, or is this something to which you can relate?
2 thoughts on “Some Days a Trance, Some Days a Ballet”
I can SOOOO relate. With 3 kids and husband with a chaotic work schedule and many other personal demands (rocked it at church on Sunday, don’t you think?), I often think my head will spin off of my shoulders! I try to remind myself to be in the moment- no where else. While I’m completing Task A, I ‘try’ not to think about B,C or D. If I’m reading with a child, I try not to think about any of them. While yes, this too will pass, you’ll some day miss it, no? I remind myself of that too- that 20 years from now I’ll yearn for the days that we ran into the local pizza joint for slice in between 20 million stops. I once heard a woman speak about how she used to get soooo mad at her daughter for taking her brush every day. now she gets out of the shower, sees her brush sitting on the vanity and busts into tears…cuz her daughter is married and away.
I continue to love your posts because, like today, you often strike a cord.
Well done, Stands-with-a-List!
Thanks so much, Angie! I absolutely agree–being in the moment is a constant challenge, and before we know it, this life chapter will have passed us by. I’m so glad you can relate and connect to my juggle struggle!