Today I woke up at 4am. I knew immediately that I wouldn't be going back to sleep. Brutal, I thought as I ticked off the 18 hours ahead of me. It was one of those days. Too much to do. Too much to think about. Too much. Put the mail on hold. Find the birth certificate. Finish health care paperwork. Update financials for work. Find something to wear for the concert. Pack for trip. Hang new blinds. Package toffee for the neighbors. Change Lucia's sheets. Might as well change my sheets......
I thought that once Lucia started Kindergarten I'd be like a suburban house-Frau. I'd play tennis (or start playing), have luncheons, go shopping, create a pristine garden, live in a clean house. I have had a few good rounds at Goodwill, but none of the other parts of my fantasy have been realized.
I must get something from existing in this busy state, because once I have a moment of time, before I know it, the moment is filled, like water in a sand castle moat. Zzzjooop. The time is gone. I'm volunteering in Lucia's school or planning a party or writing a blog.
I proposed my too-busy dilemma to my on-again-off-again therapist. I imagined that he would have time management tips for me or some analysis of how I was escaping into busy-ness or instructions for extracting X or Y or Z activities from my life. But he didn't. He said that as long as he's known me, this is my resting state. He said that my busy-ness would be less stressful if I simply accepted it. Essentially, he was telling me to not judge it, to just be in it and take away the added energy of trying to change it. "Basically," he said, "you are going to be this way until you are someway else." What!? I have to live like this?
The truth is that, outside of paying bills and doing laundry, there is nothing in my life I want to give up. But I'm tired. So how do I reconcile this? Surprisingly, the same way I deal with my feelings. I just let my busy-ness be(e) (that's a good one). I stop detaching myself from my busy-ness, stop treating it like some sort of plague that's ruining my life, and ride the wave. So what if I end up going into work on my day off or wearing the same socks two days in a row. It happens. The more I stress out about being busy, the less I enjoy the things that create the busy. I get to go to The Nutcracker with my daughter for the third year in a row. I get to run a Yoga studio that I adore. I get to see my 92-year-old neighbor Lois smile when Lucia delivers a bag of treats. I get to start 12,000 craft projects that maybe I'll finish, but in the meantime give me moments of ecstatic joy.
Turns out 4am ain't so bad.