Time is Ticking

(Image from morguefile.com)

It's been a weird week. The kids had Monday off and that turned my space/time continuum into sheer confusion.  Each day began with the normally allotted hours, but somehow, they ticked themselves off at a rapid pace.  Breakfast folded right over into the yells of, "Mom, I'm home!"  Those precious minutes, I'd like to have pinched them, held them, for just a bit longer.  Laundry piled and no sweet smells waifed from our kitchen. The Handy Man arrived from his day of work and I looked back at mine. Where did it go?

I need a schedule. I realized this sad fact weeks ago. I've tried. I downloaded calendars, blocked out time for each and every task. But, I've lived too long in spontaneity.  For two decades, my time has been spent on the whims of my children.  The price didn't seem high, but now I find my account is unbalanced.  School and appointments, shopping, homework.  They constantly make withdrawls, but rarely put anything back. How could they, it's my time.  I've happily given it away, but how do I balance their needs with mine?

 What's mine has always been theirs. It started with my body- losing all sense of self in those first nine months.  Then our home, toys scattered and television shows turned from HBO to Nickelodeon and Disney. Our car, oh how I loved our sporty little car. They took that, too. Date nights disappeared, my days were focused on nursing, diapering, volunteering, reading, teaching......   And, there it happened- my time was no longer my own.

So, schedule I will, because, I need time for me. I need time to write.  I long for minutes of quiet so I can create.  I crave hours of concentration to edit my book. I need time- to sit, to ponder.  It seems selfish to highlight those hours for me.  This is mine, my own time and you can't have any.  I feel like a kid with an ice cream, refusing to  share.  The others look on, wondering why I'm keeping those precious moments to myself.  Hopefully, the schedule will help.  I can take my time and share it, too.  It will guide me to the balance of mine and theirs.  I'm sure there's enough to go around if I try.

"Much may be done in those little shreds and patches 
of time which every day produces, and which most
men throw away." -Charles Caleb Colton


  1. Well, you know that when you take your "own" time, you really are sharing. You'll be able to accomplish your goals with respect to your book, which will benefit us all. You'll be happier, and those around you will be happier as well. But of course, you already know all of this. :)

    1. I'm sure my husband would be happier if I was better with my time. I know I will be too.

  2. Schedules are great, as long as we don't squeeze them too tight, if you know what I mean? I got in the habit of having a "schedule," but then got down on myself when I didn't stick to it regidly.

    So I've learned from that.

    How far along are you in you book? Have you written about that, and I'm just a late comer so I don't know? If so, what are some good links to find out more about your process, your editing, etc? How very exciting, anf for sure you need to take time to work on it. Good for you.

  3. My book is done, though I'm still in the editing process. I've posted a few times about writing it, but nothing very in depth. My most recent mention was here- http://frazzledandfrumpy.blogspot.com/2012/02/three-questions.html

  4. I just left you an award on my blog. Thanks for making me laugh:)

  5. This hit home especially since I finally realized after another night of no sleep that my needs no longer matter. Sigh.

    1. It's such an exhausting time. Someday it will get better. Well, you'll get more sleep, anyway.

  6. There's so very much here I identify with. Now that mine are older and need me less, I have more of my own time than ever, but I am horrible at using it wisely and managing it. I think I've gotten so far out of the habit that it's going to take a concerted effort to remember how to take (and keep) time for myself.

    There's an Annie Dillard quote I've always loved (even though I've failed to live by it): "A schedule is a net for catching days." Without it, they have a tendency to wriggle right out of our grasp.

  7. Oh, how I related to this post!!! I used to be such a scheduled person. I had a plan, I had structure! My favorite day of the week was Monday when everything got back to normal after the weekend. I struggled mightily with summers and tried as hard as I could to plan out each week of summer activities. But I've somehow lost that. I fly by the seat of my pants daily. And although I've come to discover that spontaneity can be nice...I've also found that when I do have down time, I don't use it well because I've forgotten how. I'm in the process of trying to find a balance.

  8. Schedules are powerful things! I need to get back to mine ...
    Good luck Jewels! (By the way, just got back in town and will be answering your e-mail as soon as possible, I'm so excited to read!)


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