Saturday, November 13, 2010

Finding Balance

Like most mamas I have many roles that I play: I'm a mama, wife, daughter, homemaker, toymaker, artist assistant and school volunteer. Whoa, what a mouthful! Lately, I've been having trouble balancing all these identities. With the holiday season coming quickly upon us the toymaker in me has been taking over rushing to get more magic wands and crowns made. What I've noticed recently is I let all my other roles fall by the wayside trying to accomplish just this one task. Putting housekeeping aside, letting my mother (who lives with us) cook the meals, passing by my husband in the evening as we try to get stuff done, telling my son I'm too busy to play etc. This last one I acutely felt as Sam said the other day "Why don't you play with me Mama?' - ouch!

Sam is and will be our only biological child. We're hoping to adopt, but with the bills left over from our infertility treatments that's on hold. We worked so hard to have this wonderful child and I'm telling him I don't have time to play because I'm making toys for other people's children. Hmm...doesn't sound quite right. So, I took a step back and reevaluated all the things I do which make me me. The one I'm most proud of is being a mother. I'm sure this is true for many of you as well. It was literally the hardest thing I've ever accomplished, but I need to remember it's ongoing and didn't just end with the birth. Sam doesn't require 100% of my attention 100% of the time to be a good mama to him, but maybe a little more would be a good idea.

So, I sat down with pen and paper to draw up a plan/schedule for myself. There simply was not enough hours in the day to do everything to the extent I would like to do them. So, I dropped out of one of the Waldorf School Holiday Fairs I was going to sell my work at and decided just keeping up with etsy, at least for this year, would be enough for the toymaker in me, I talked to my mother about splitting the meal preparation so as not to take advantage of her help. Trying to spend more time in the evening talking to my husband, not just focusing on what I can get done in that quiet time when Sam is asleep. Keeping my volunteer and assistant work within the time frame I've allowed for them as both could easily take as much time as I could give them. I even decided that a little mess in the house is o.k., but daily, not weekly, management is needed.

Sounds so easy on paper, but it's still a struggle. I'm glad Sam awakened me to my tendency to go overboard in one direction. Like in meditation, it's that constant reminder to come back to center that's important, not just being in the center, because life happens. What do you do to keep yourself balanced in your life?

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