Today my kids stopped playing for a moment and took notice that Mommy wasn’t running around the house. She wasn’t at the computer. She was sitting on the sofa quietly. “What are you doing?” Bubby asked. “I am reading. I read books now. Books are cool.” And if you are a Whovian, you will understand the reference.
I realized then that it has been a long time since the kids have seen me reading for pleasure. I encourage them to read. I read to them, but I haven’t read to myself and for myself in quite a while. I love books. I have so many of them that I could start my own used book shop, and yet I have been letting those poor things become dust collectors. Well…not anymore!
As I was straightening tonight after the kids went to bed, I was thinking about how we all seem to busy ourselves with so many things that we don’t take time to enjoy things anymore. I say “we” because I know I am not the only person who does this. We have become a society of over-scheduled, pressed for time people. We live in a society that has made it possible to live longer and yet many people are having heart attacks younger and younger. We don’t stop and smell the roses, and we brag about how much work we do and how overloaded we are. It has become a badge of honor. The worst part, as I realized today, is that we are passing those same values onto our children.
I encourage my children to play. There are times where school work doesn’t get done until the evening because the kids have engrossed themselves into building a blanket fort and are pretending they are camping somewhere far away. Today they were pretending to be mole people. However, I don’t take the same time for myself. I throw myself into project after project. I tell people I don’t have time for a hobby like it’s a good thing. Well, it’s not. So I am working on breaking the cycle.
Today it was a book. Tomorrow it might be a hobby. Whatever it is, I am in the process of learning that sometimes we need to take time out and just breathe.