Recommitting to whimsy
For a long time, I have fallen into a pattern of functionality followed by falling flat. Thinking about checklists before bed, fretting about the things that haven’t gotten done as I willed to wake up in the morning, living by the clock.
Even writing here was a part of my ever-growing to-do list, so it became easier and easier this past semester to put off the weekly blog.
Over the last few weeks, I decided to recommit to frivolity and dreaming. To be honest, I hadn’t allowed myself much of that after 2016. Between the birth of my son, the stunning and heartbreaking turn politics took, and other milestones of adulthood, it made more sense to focus on understanding the world better, navigating logistics better, and focusing on getting things done, and well.
But things I slowly had been drifting away from (for much longer than that) included reading fiction for pleasure, leisurely walks, and guilt-free unstructured time (as opposed to procrastination induced by analysis paralysis and exhaustion). It was easy to justify it. I have a bad habit of literally dropping everything else to read a compelling book. I’m a mother, a wife, a full-time professional, dance teacher, and a grad student - that feels like a tenuous balance that would be upended by that habit.
I began this year determined to get my life in better shape. I began attempting to wrangle our house in shape, meal prep more, be more functional with few hours of sleep, and convince my body to support me better. It was frustrating, and had just marginal benefits.
A couple of weekends ago, I awoke early Saturday morning with a lengthy to-do list and got nothing on that list done. Instead, I devoured four novels in an eighteen hour period, caught up on some necessary sleep, and spent the subsequent days with my mind racing in ways it hasn’t in a long time. It reminded me of parts of my soul and memories that had been dormant for a long time. It had me looking at my own life with new eyes, and subsequently, invigorate my dance, inspire me to write more, and take stock of the time and space between to-dos.
Of course, I spent the days that followed buried in to-do lists. It was a busy time at work, at dance class, leading into finals for my semester. We had a three-day workshop, and are prepping for a two-day music and dance festival The three of us each ensured we spent at least three days in bed sick with a particularly nasty bug. And at the other end of it, I wish I could scramble that weekend in with the rest of the days, that time for exploring and reading and dancing and living was mixed in with productive, objective-oriented, tasks.
So, that’s what I want to do going forward. And that will, hopefully, mean writing more, here. Wish me luck.