A few nights ago, my son came home from school in a really bad mood. He was overwhelmed with school work and wasn’t happy with how his friends were treating one another. While he’s ranting and raving about all of his stuff, I was trying to cook dinner, help my youngest with her math paper, feed the dog, do the dishes, fold the laundry, take out the trash and… I could go on, but I won’t. I had this checklist in my mind of all the things that needed to be done that evening and I couldn’t see how to add anything else to the list.
Finally, I noticed the house got quiet, eerily quiet. At first I tried to ignore the silence and then I wondered what had happened to everyone. I went outside and discovered that my kids had gathered on the back deck to enjoy the sunset and look up at the stars. At first I started to nag them and tell them to finish their homework and help with the dishes, all of those things on my to-do list that needed to be done and soon. But even as I started to open my mouth and nag away, my youngest daughter asked me how my day was and all three of my kids stared at me waiting for an answer. I honestly couldn’t remember my day. I thought for a minute trying to think of something I had done, but finally had to ask them about their days first.
I’m really good at making lists of things to do, doing them and moving on. I’m not so good at taking time to enjoy the ride as I manage my way through my day. But I realized that night on the back deck watching the sunset, I don’t want to manage my checklist each day. I want to enjoy it as I go along with it. I want to take care of me. I want to participate in spontaneous gatherings on the back deck.
One of the many things on today’s checklist was to write this blog. As I was searching through my files for ideas, I came across some notes that I took during a training not too long ago, including a quote: “Everything changed the day she figured out there was exactly enough time for the important things in her life.” Make sure you don’t let those important things pass you by.