Mindful life update

I promised you all — and the author of The Doris Diaries — a book review today. And then my cousin came into town. Followed by my parents. Followed by my parents leaving. Followed by a really full schedule. And, so, yeah. The Doris Diaries review will be next week FOR SURE. Well, unless I’m hit by a bus. In which case I declare this my last will and testament: Lara inherits my book collection and after she attends my funeral and mourns for a respectful (but not extended) period of time, she will post a review of the book.

If I have to be hit by a bus, I hope it’s this one.

I figured in my current chaos, I should update my attempts at a more mindful life. It isn’t always working, obviously.

That’s an over simplification. I have found a lot that is working. Some is action and some is perception.

1. I still block out most of our mornings to be home and to learn and explore together. This keeps the kids grounded and me sane.

2. I still have just a talk-and-text phone. I don’t miss the smartphone at all and apparently didn’t use it much. Getting rid of it didn’t help but it didn’t hurt and my cell phone bill dropped by $10.

3. I have declined the opportunity to add new things into our schedule so we are kept a (mostly) steady busy rather than a hectic-crazy burnout busy.

4. I have accepted that it is unrealistic for me to have more than two hobbies simultaneously. While I’m writing and crafting, I cannot also be reading. While I’m reading and writing, I cannot be knitting. Right now, I’m reading and cooking (more than just for survival). And I refuse to beat myself up over the half finished story and the barely-started ornaments and the stack of fabric that is supposed to be a dress. They will all get done in their time.

5. I’m sticking with the gratitude. Everything in my life comes from a place of privilege. Being alive is a privilege. Having children is a privilege. Staying home with them is a HUGE privilege. Access to books, fresh foods, fabric I didn’t have to weave myself… all privilege and I’m thankful for all of them.

6. I actively let go of other people’s visions. Raising my kids with the hustle and bustle of NYC with subway fares and delicious pizza isn’t for us. The pizza is but the rest isn’t. Living out in the wilderness exploring all day in the woods without media to distract us is also not for us. Spending a year or two in different places across the globe before packing up and moving again isn’t our dream. We are living our authentic lives and if we weren’t, I would be working towards something more. We live a semi-suburban kind of life and we like it. The occasional chaos is part of the life we have chosen.

What makes your life simpler, happier, and more fulfilling? Is it what you do or just how you perceive what you do? Share in the comments.

Well, I feel like I do nothing at all but nurse my newborn and prepare food for my older children, but mostly nurse my newborn. I’m being completely serious. I accomplish almost nothing else in a day. So, in a way I have simplified things lately. Ask me this question again in a few months when I can see beyond… the tip of my breast.

Great update! I’ll commment to items 4 and 6 specifically—Learning to accept the ebb and flow of productivity and not be discouraged by days where things just don’t get done is soo important. It’s like the zen of multitasking. And YES to the not living out someone else’s vision of the most mindful/complete/hipster life.

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One thought on “Mindful life update

  1. Thanks Charlie. This really touched me, especially the concept of living our own path. Mine is hard to hold to with so many dissenters sometimes (single mom with law practice and an internet/home schooler). But you are right, it is working for US! She does her thing during the day, my mom helps out by making sure she ears, then at night we have rehearsal for a musical together, come home and I work with her on schoolwork, teach her a piano lesson, and listen to her play me a new fiddle tune (or five) that she’s learned. I’m probably the only mom in America on this current path, but I do thank God for the ability and the strength to have paved it. And your blog helped me realize that it isn’t cheating, or copping out of the system, its just working.

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