January 24, 2010 - 9:23 PM
Time is starting to wrap around me, putting mass amounts of pressure on me from all angles as it continues to constrict tighter and tighter. Yet I am not broken by the squeezing and I am still able to breath. I am not loosing this battle. I've had to become militant about my time, making every minute, every second count for something. It is true that whenever one says yes to something, they are saying no to something else. I cannot afford to say yes to anything wasteful right now because the clock is ticking and time is like a Python.
So I am in the process of learning what is and is not important. This is what I've learned so far: getting up early and starting off the day with a bit of physical exercise and some time with God is essential. This is a better use of my time than an extra hour of sleep, and in fact, I am about to increase that time to two hours because there is more that I want to get out of my mornings along these lines before my day gets too crazy. Starting tomorrow morning, my daily routine will consist of getting up at 5:00 am every weekday for an hour of extra time.
Second, making time with my daughter good quality time is priceless. Even a few minutes of present undistracted time makes a world of difference in my ability to connect with her and her willingness to open up and share her special life and her beautiful heart with me. It is so easy to get caught up in the doing and I just crash when I am "free" to. But this freedom comes with a cost and I'm seeing how that price has been a depth of relationship with my baby girl. No more. She is certainly worth more than what I've given her. Simple things like letting her help me make dinner (a very hard thing for me to do) mean so much.
Third, cleaning the house as I go throughout the day saves a huge headache on the weekends or on homework days. There is something wonderful about having a clean space to live and work in. I tend to let my head be so full of other things that putting my coat away when I get home would not happen. I'd rush through the door, drop my coat on the back of the couch and head off to what I needed to get done. Pretty soon I'd forget, would grab another coat when I needed to leave because of course I would not think to grab the coat already by the door, and repeat this cycle when I'd get home again. After two or three days of this type of routine and my house was thrashed. Being proactive is a much better use of my time.
Fourth, reading and homework needs to get done in any break, within reason. Conversely, breaks are important and are not always a poor way to spend my time. I am pretty strict during the week and take every minute possible for work, but Saturdays tend to be errand and family day, no homework. Sundays also are a little to no homework day and I am now letting myself take a long 2 or 3 hour nap in the middle of the day to jump start my week full of rest.
And it is amazing how just being more intentional and more intense in doing what I do, how much more I am getting accomplished. My family has had good homemade meals every night of the week and good, healthy leftovers on the nights I'm not available. My husband and I are just as connected as ever, my daughter and I more than we have been able to this year, my house constantly clean, my homework done, and my spiritual life not dead. I am certainly maintaining my current routine and am doggedly determined to stick with it and have a successful term in all areas. I am learning so much.