When we ask people how they are doing, we can about put money down that the word "busy" will be incorporated somewhere in their response. I've begun to really dislike that word mostly because I dislike what it means and how true it is for most of us, myself included. Poop emoji.
I am a person who could easily be entertained sitting in silence staring blankly at a wall left alone with my deep thoughts bouncing from anything from how I did much better when I did menu planning in advance to wondering what I'm doing right now in a parallel universe and if maybe I'm actually reincarnated many places all over this world at this moment and if any of those people happen to be enjoying an amazing meal with a glass of wine. Yum...
I don't get time to do that. I am a single mom with three kids, two of which attend high school in a small school which means, they are involved in everything. I work full time as a school psychologist which means I have no idea what my day will look like until it's unfolding. I'm in a reactionary mode most days. I also have my passion projects where I get to teach from my soul. And my amazing and helpful partner happens to live 90 minutes away.
A typical weekday begins by commuting to work and after going straight to a gym. I spend a TON of time at the gym. Not that gym. Ah no! I'm a passive spectator, enjoying my kids and their teams as they get their exercise in the form of sport. Because I have a daughter and a son in high school, the first and third games include my daughter and the last is my son's. This brings us home typically around 10 pm, depending on travel time. My youngest son typically complains throughout the game because he doesn't want to be there.
We rarely have family meals. Even our Sunday nights have now been filled with a practice of some sort many times throughout the year. This Christmas break was full of practices and games on the weekends, leaving one day to get many Christmas celebrations in. There was no time to just be.
I have recognized this dysfunction that has consumed us. This year, I have made the intention that on the weekends that my kids are with their dad, I would focus on my partner and our business. I cut back two days of work a month to help with this (still having the same responsibilities). And I am giving my kids permission, even encouraging them, to not partake in the "extras". I do not attend all of their games which at first was a huge adjustment because that's not what most parents do around where I live. At first, it felt like the measure of a parent's love was shown by the hours watching them play games. I've done a fine job of releasing that false story.
The point is, I'm trying. Before I go on with my rant, I acknowledge my part in the problem. I know I can do more.
But it feels like an uphill battle. I understand maybe next year will be less busy because my son will no longer be in high school. But that breaks my heart because he will be off to college and maybe I'll have a few more hours at home, but he won't be here for me to enjoy.
"The unexamined life is not worth living… for a human.” How are we supposed to live, to reflect, to just be, to enjoy, to unfold, to be fully human when we are so busy?
This phenomenon is spiritually destructive to our health and wellbeing. It reduces our ability to be fully present with those we love the most and keeps us from forming the connections that we all so desperately crave. The distraction has pulled us away from what is truly important.
I'm frankly quite sick of it. I often feel like I've lost control over my priorities. I know my situation is somewhat unique given I'm a single mom, who does share my time with my kids with their dad, I work multiple jobs and have to commute to see my partner, but I know I'm really not that abnormal. Even in two-parent homes, they are feeling it. I see it everywhere.
We are starting organized sports earlier and we have for some reason grown to believe that kids at young ages should be performing like professional athletes. We stress the importance of sports and we show kids this by making practice a priority a few times a week, yelling at them and the refs during games, or fighting with other parents and coaches in games. The kids and parents become afraid to miss anything because it could impact their playing time.
We overschedule our kids. We put them in all sorts of extra stuff because that's just what we do. It's what everyone does. We fear if we don't, our kids will suffer because the other kids will have an advantage. Ummmm...advantage at what? Look at our kids. Is all of this extra stuff really making them happier?
It's next to impossible for me to have a family meal. I struggle to get quality food in their mouths or my mouth. I've surrendered some on that and that makes me sad.
In the chakra system, we know the importance of having strong root chakras. This is the source of where all else can grow. It is our family. Our roots. Our tribe. Where we feel like we belong. It becomes so much harder to develop strong lower chakras when we are so distracted by things that we are led to believe are important, but really, are they?
My wish is for families to take a step back and look at the big picture. If we start reprioritizing and sticking to it, others will feel empowered to do the same. The system will have to adjust.
We weren't born to be so busy. Our hearts are hurting. Our families are struggling. Our health is declining. I miss my kids.
Let's become human Beings and less human doings.
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