Just Write {46}

July 30, 2012

We woke up a little later than usual on Sunday. This only happens when our early bird alarm clock that goes by the name of Miles actually sleeps past 5:45. Oh yes, an early bird he has always been. To roll over to peer one-eyed at the clock and find the first number is a 7 is a true gift.

I made coffee and put my feet up, held the iPad and did pretty much nothing.

Ryan shifted next to me, he’s always moving. Maybe boys never grow out of that. His newspaper was making those whispering and rustling sounds that only come from those good ol’ feather-light newsprint pages. Asher climbed up next to me and handed me “James and the Giant Peach”. He wanted to know what was going to happen next.

Elsie took dominoes from their tin container, one by one, setting them scattered across the table and onto the floor. Miles was in the next room, watching Animal Plant. I called for him to come and hear more of James’ big peach story.

Later in the day I walked in the sun with a friend who has walked so many roads ahead of me. She tells me what she knows and I take it in and bury it deep because that’s what a person should do with wisdom. Keep it. She tells me that she used to not be able to just do nothing. She couldn’t sit down and, just stop, because if you’re not busy, there’s something wrong with you? We asked. Or do we end up thinking that doing nothing takes something from what you’re worth?

These things are not true, that seems so obvious. And still it is taking me a long time to just sit down. I’m getting there. I told my friend that just the day before I’d been thinking about the rat race, specifically the ones that mothers run. I said that I don’t want to sign my kids up for a load of activities and run from thing to thing. We laughed and I could see my reflection in her sunglasses when I said I want to be a family that doesn’t do much and I want to be proud of it, while I stomped my foot and bit down with a growl–proud of it–grrr.

Then I told her that this is one of the things that I learned from Ellie very soon after I quit drinking. She said, Sometimes doing nothing is doing something.

I wrote it down on a post-it note when she said it because I knew I needed it. I have it stuck to the calendar on the wall by my desk. When there are too many things written on the calendar and I’m feeling all stressed, I look down at that note and know for sure that it’s true.

So my feet were up and my pajamas were on and it stayed like that a long time and then I got up and made pancakes with my boys.

This is the 46th installment of Just Write, an exercise in free writing your ordinary and extraordinary moments{Please see the details here.}  I would love to read your freely written words so join me and link up below. You can add the url of your post at any time. Just be sure it’s a link to your Just Write post, not to your main pageThen please link back to this post in your post so people know where to go if they’d like to join in.) (Any links not following those two guidelines will be deleted.)

Also. Please take a moment to visit someone else who has linked up! It’s a really good way to meet new writers and get inspired by the meaning behind their moments. Word?

P.S. The winner of the camera strap giveaway from Crafty Chic is jenchic!!! (how perfect)

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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Herb of Grace July 30, 2012 at 9:35 pm

SO much needed… thank you :)

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designhermomma July 30, 2012 at 9:36 pm

I really really really want to do nothing, because it’s something. I love it, and there is so much value there.
designhermomma recently posted..warning: a mom “with many” shameless rant ahead…

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Sarah @ToddlerSummer July 30, 2012 at 10:15 pm

We all need that reminder every once in a while. It is hard to slow down. But the slowing down is so much more important than the speeding up.
Sarah @ToddlerSummer recently posted..These Tears Need A Name

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Stephanie Precourt July 30, 2012 at 10:28 pm

I’m recently getting better at doing nothing, which does turn into something and usually something good.

Steph
Stephanie Precourt recently posted..Slow And Steady Wins The Race

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Jayna @ Yankee Drawl July 30, 2012 at 11:48 pm

In childhood, doing nothing was always terribly boring and something to complain about. Now, it’s something we have to be conscious of, planning it out or at least making an effort to have the time for a simple bit of nothing. I wish I’d known then how much I’d enjoy it now.
Jayna @ Yankee Drawl recently posted..project july {moves. big and small}

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melissa @ the pleated polka dot July 31, 2012 at 6:56 am

a great reminder. i have a hard time just resting and taking it easy. my husband tells me often “just sit down.” but yes doing nothing is doing something. it’s rejuvinating the soul so we can continue to give:))
melissa @ the pleated polka dot recently posted..::the one where we summer::

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Sara July 31, 2012 at 7:41 am

My daughters are 3 1/2 and 1 1/2 and already I look at the families around me and all the bustle—even the ones that try to keep it sane and not do too much. My big girl yesterday expressed interest in dance class and gymnastics and swimming (that last one I will require anyway)—already. Already I wonder how to flow against that tide.

This summer I struggle between all I want to do and all the nothing I want to do, because summer is so busy, yet so made for doing nothing some days. At night I stay up too late, sometimes to just sit because finally the house is quiet. Sometimes doing nothing is doing something. A good reminder.

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Erica @ Expatria, Baby July 31, 2012 at 7:51 am

What a lesson this is. Can I tell you that here, barely into my third year of motherhood, I’m still not in a place where I understand this? Shouldn’t I be doing something? Cleaning? Playing? Entertaining? Enriching? Engaging? Obviously no, enjoying a Sunday morning is exactly what we should be doing. But my heart needs to learn that still, so maybe I’ll just read this post again. And write my own post-it-note.
Erica @ Expatria, Baby recently posted..Jakarta, Day Three

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Tricia July 31, 2012 at 8:00 am

Doing something is doing nothing – a tough mind-shift but so very true. I’m getting there too…
Tricia recently posted..Naptime

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Jill July 31, 2012 at 1:00 pm

So, so lovely. Maybe the stamina to do nothing in a do everything world is one of the best gifts we can give our kids? This post made me feel so peaceful. I am proud to be part of the trying to do nothing crowd…and so happy to find like-minded people here!

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Jennifer July 31, 2012 at 1:30 pm

Oh I need to write that down for myself. “Doing nothing is doing something.”
Jennifer recently posted..Project 365, Week 30

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Michelle July 31, 2012 at 1:41 pm

LOVE those slow lazy mornings!

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Jessica July 31, 2012 at 1:55 pm

I’m not good at doing nothing because my mind just does too much when my body is just sitting there. I need to practice more often.
Jessica recently posted..Yellow

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tara/pohlkottepress July 31, 2012 at 3:59 pm

i’m kind of doing a whole summer of nothing…the olympics help. watch hours of tv, then feel as though i’ve accomplished a gold medal :)
tara/pohlkottepress recently posted..Loving the Wind

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Salem Archer Anderson July 31, 2012 at 4:03 pm

I am so with you on being one of those families that does little (in the form of organized kid activities) and being proud of it! It is hard when fellow mom’s ask, “so…do you just stay home all the time?”. Like being at home and being a family is a bad thing?! We actually do things at home, together. Not just some of us watching from the sidelines as the other ones do things.
Anyways…my husband and I try to balance the kid’s activities with our family activities, and usually our family activities take first priority. Even if that family activity is enjoying a lazy Sunday morning together!
I love this post Heather! And I admit I am a little relieved to find out that other moms out there feel the same way about the stereotypical “soccer mom” image of constantly chauffeuring the kids around!
Salem Archer Anderson recently posted..things are changing

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shannon July 31, 2012 at 10:16 pm

I’m going to write that on a sticky, too. Thanks for this exercise and for getting me to write. I think I’m going to have fun with this. And fun reading your site. I think you’re lovely.

xo

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jen July 31, 2012 at 11:47 pm

i want that. super super bad.
like really really want that.
someday. right?
please tell me yes.
jen recently posted..refrigerator pickles. and water parks.

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Robin August 1, 2012 at 10:46 am

Sometimes doing nothing is doing something. That is a great bit of wisdom.

As for children’s activities – I made them choose one thing at a time. I didn’t think it was a good idea for any of us to be over scheduled. Lucky me, each of them chose an activity that only required them to go to lessons once a week. When my son was in high school, he went to check out joining the basketball team. He came home and declared they expected him to marry the team – they actually wanted him to show up at practice every day. Needless to say, he didn’t try out.
Robin recently posted..What Does Your Hair Length Say About You – Do I Need To Conform?

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