Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Bad jokes & dance parties

Right now, my work load seems unending.

Example: Somehow, I did six loads of laundry this weekend, and even still, Robby, Will, and my hampers are almost completely full. It seems like a bad joke.  Note to soon-to-be mom's out there:  I never realized how much laundry a tiny baby could make.  But now, with having a toddler who is constantly outside... pants get dirty.  Or muddy.  Or ripped.  During lunch, I think it's almost a requirement that Will spills something on himself.  It's a bit amazing the laundry an 18 month old can create.

Now, I get to do exactly what I want to do. Work load wise, I mean.  Write. Photograph. Be a wife. Be a mom.  How could I complain?  This is the life that I chose.  And I wouldn't trade it for anything.  However, right now, it is absolutely imperative for me to take the time to consider this season I find myself in. I am lucky.  Extremely lucky.  Currently, I have the opportunity to blossom creatively, a husband who is behind me 100% encouraging me, and a massive amount of laundry to serve… without grumbling. 
When I have a spare moment, I think of the things that I'm filling my time with.  Which begs the question, what am I doing with my life? I can come up with a swizillion (a swiss million) different things that I fill my day with... Watch Dora, have dance parties with Will, Eat PB&J's, change a tremillion (not swiss for anything, move along) diapers, cook, work out, clean up after a whirling tornado of destruction that is my son, do my photography lessons, go to church, vacuum, do laundry like it's going out of style, the list goes on and on and on...
The things I spend my time doing is a bold declaration about what is important to me. Therefore, I dared myself to slow down, even if I don't necessarily have the 'time' to, and feed my soul the things it craves. Regardless of what my agenda is calling for.  One of these cravings is friendship. No, I don’t have time to go out to lunch, and no-no-no I don’t have time to grab coffee with my friends, but in actuality… I really do. I do have time. Here we are, you and me both, we have it. But we’ve delegated it to things in such odd rations that we’ve literally become a slave to our schedules instead of free living lovers of what once was life.  
Let me explain, I'm not a shy hide-in-the-corner-eating-my-hair type girl.  I do have a lot of friends.  Just with all the responsibilities of being a wife(and a minister's wife, at that), a photographer, and a mother has most of my day, weeks, months jammed packed.  But I'll be the first to admit, that most things I put upon myself to do, are time limits that I create.  I tell clients for family/engagement/maternity/baby shoots that it'll be two weeks to get their pictures.  I try to do it in one.  I tell my weddings that it'll be four weeks.  I try to do it in two.  I'm a bit of an overachiever and it's catching up to me.  
I'm not trying to promote anyone to be irresponsible.  Or tell them not to follow through on their commitments.  Or to bail on their schedules.  Only to try to see that all the things that we tell ourselves we have to get done TODAY that are absolutely-imperative-or-the-world-will-end... are not actually the end of the world.  (Yes, that last sentence was a run on. My bad:)
In conclusion, stop putting time constraints on yourself.  Your clients aren't going to know if you spent an extra day than you were planning on their already-faster-than-promised pictures.  Grab the cup of coffee.  Read the book.  Catch the movie.  Spend a day doing all the things you wished you had time to do. (Yes, I do realize this last paragraph was mostly for my benefit.)

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