So every once in a while life inexplicably and mercifully clears the deck for us. Sometimes, usually when we least expect it, we’re given a minute to inhale and really savor the breath. I just got my minute. And I almost missed it. Good thing I was paying attention.
Riley, my 16 year old, was at a concert with friends in the city. Libby, my 13 year old, decided, almost in spite of herself, that she needed to go to the gym and work out at 8:30, before she had even swallowed her last bite of dinner. And my husband Dave decided he’d stoke the coals on her little gym fire and offer to sit and read and wait for her. What did that leave me to do? N O T H I N G. Absolutely nothing. And while I’m almost always prone to creating something for myself to do instead of just sitting and enjoying a moment of quietude, like most people, I actually resisted any compulsive urge I had to iron or sort and sat my ass down on an Adirondack on the front porch. In the coolness of the night with a Summer Shandy, a delicious book, and very heavy eyes, I just sat there. I closed my eyes and sipped a beer and let the night breeze wash over me. Maybe even through me somehow. I thought about nothing. I replayed the day in my head, enjoying the disjointedness of my thoughts banging into each other in my lazy head. I wasn’t out there long, but it was long enough.
I don’t shut down very often. But when I do I remember why it’s so important that we pull our plug every once in a while. In the same way that my laptop sometimes just seizes up under the stress of everything that my CPU is running, so does my head sometimes. And it’s amazing what that simple act of pulling the plug can do. Almost mysteriously, that one little action almost always manages to set things right again.
Don’t miss your moment.