When I was younger, I was rather driven; I took overtime at work, cooked, baked, made family time, and kept a clean house and yard. At that time, married with three children, my life was never without lists: daily, weekly, monthly, and future projects. It was important to be productive every minute; naps were for young children, otherwise they were wasteful.
Being older, the desire or ability to keep that pace has diminished. Aches and pains from abusive work habits catch up with a body through the years. This brings up the question, “Is it really that important in the end?” My struggle with guilt over becoming rather sluggish or thinking I should accomplish more presents itself occasionally. Yet at the same time, watching my mother age makes me realize we don’t have all the time in the world. My children are grown, and I realize I missed out on some key moments in their lives and there are no do-overs.
Hindsight gives us the ability to look back and acknowledge what could have been different. There are enough pressures in life: school, jobs, financial, worldly and other obligations; so take time to read or paint, invite friends or family over, and enjoy the moment. I give myself permission to spend time sitting on the porch with the dogs, enjoying the neighborhood sounds while enjoying coffee without guilt.
The life lesson learned is to take the luxury of either a half hour or a day and experience life; don’t always wait for everything to be completed. Because of my desire to stay on track and create work, my lists were endless. Lately my priorities have changed, the add-ons have stopped and I’m learning its okay to give myself approval to “enjoy life in the moment.”
Submitted by student Tanta Horning