We are looking at rental properties and Kathy mentioned the possibility of us splitting to find cheaper housing. After having spent the week alone with my three while she and our mom took her boys to Disney, I replied, “we’d have to be right beside each other then.” Spending a week being a truly single mom – was truly stressful to me.
It’s stressful when you have a kid in school and have to deal with sudden changes – oh, a 2-hour-delay for freezing rain; no after school programming for a couple days, anything else you want to throw at me?
It’s stressful when viruses are running amuck and you don’t know who and when is going to fall next. Micah had two evenings of low-grade fever, headaches and went to bed early, but I still wasn’t ready to call him sick since I was single parenting (so I just had to keep worrying that he was “getting sick”!).
It’s stressful when there are two grants due on the same day for my crisis nursery work (and I’ve never written grants before). I got 3 hours of sleep Tuesday night and 2 hours of sleep Wednesday night – and as you can imagine, this lack of sleep was not helping my parenting skills.
It’s stressful when you pick up the pen and sign your name that you are prepared to accept the responsibility of adopting another boy. You pick up the pen. You sign. A good stress….but a stress nonetheless.
And it’s stressful to worry about said boy who hasn’t gained weight in over 6 months so you’re just starting him on pediasure (to bulk him up) and spending the week wondering whether the phenomenal amount of blood letting they did last week will reveal any answers. (Update – All negative – he’s currently a perfectly healthy (runny-nosed) teeny, tiny little guy).
I spent the whole week with stress hanging over my shoulders about what I would do (and how life would have to be juggled) if just one piece fell out of my finely balanced tower. And if you’re living in stress and constantly under pressure and not sleeping for the week, the time moves by without much chance to catch up to it.
Yet, as I drove to church this morning, I noticed my body soften looking at the beauty of the new snow on the world. I thought about the tranquility of watching snow fall through the yellow glare of a street light (I will often pause and stare for the longest time at this softness). I thought about how I love winter when it lets you slow down. You stay home because you don’t want to be out “in that.” You dream of a huge warm fireplace (next house?). It seems that the world should pause for a moment longer after the rush of the holidays. Yes, we tend to schedule fewer events and the weather tends to cancel schools and meetings and work. And maybe we should all follow nature’s rhythm of taking a break in the winter – resting, hibernating, rejuvenating, preparing….
Maybe I should become a tree.
Here’s to hoping for some earth-stopping blizzards in February! (just kidding!)