Artist, Writer, Woman, Mother, Healer, Teacher, Biohacker, Gardener, Friend, Entrepreneur
It’s early and I’m tired. I didn’t sleep well last night. Today we find out about my son’s knee surgery. I am hot, flushed and would like nothing more than to crawl back into bed but I know that this is a futile effort that will only put a larger burden on my sleep schedule if I succumb to it. I wipe off the sweat and look to my day.
Routine is something I have fought against my entire life, but I find it soothing now. It is necessary. When it gets broken I feel broken. Never before have I understood the need for the constants of everyday living, the blessing of having a pattern to life. It has made me more compassionate and understanding toward my children’s Asperger’s and OCD behaviors, toward those individuals like my father who have always known the blessing of having the same thing to look forward to each day and embracing it with a calm joy. I welcome that ease.
Slowly I am understanding the benefit of the simplicity of life lived without that one, two, three, one, two, three of dangling from a chandelier even though I haven’t regularly drank in many years and now, and more than ever I am holding on to life fiercely. Still, at times I feel that rhythm calling to me, that wanderlust of scarcity that made things seem like they were worth keeping on with when you only got a few hours of sleep, when the skin was flushed from dance and the sweat was earned with joy rather than tossing and turning.
It’s funny how we see things in hindsight. Funny how we fall into the mindsets of our parents as we age, funny until it isn’t. Yesterday my son thanked me for never telling him how to think; for teaching him to form his own opinions and to ask the tough questions. It was a good moment but it made me think about whether or not I had done him a disservice as a parent.
Would he have had fewer sleepless nights in his future as a cog in the machine, going through the routine of life, never hanging on that precipice and daring to embrace his fears head on? Should I have taught him to appreciate routine rather than to be skeptical of the status quo, to ask the questions no one wants asked, to go around rather than through?
It doesn’t really matter, because I wasn’t built that way and I’m still not. I’ve just come closer to balance in life and I think that can only be earned with age and experience. I always wanted better, faster, more…and I still do. Just ask my mom who threatened to take my cane yesterday because it helped me walk more quickly and she couldn’t keep up, when just a couple weeks ago I had to ask her to slow on a walk.
The difference between my youth and my middle age is that I am learning to control the swing, to pace, to flex my muscles with conservation and still enjoy that they can bring me to sweat. Yes, I bemoan the sleepless nights, the worries and the hot flashes that remind me to be gentler with myself but it’s still early, and I am tired but I will most likely sleep better this night and if not, there is still another day with new lessons waiting, and a son who is unafraid to tell me that I’ve done good by him. I’ll take that break in routine any day.