When I was a young mom, I can honestly say that experiencing moments where I had “nothing to do” gave me enormous anxiety. So occupied had I become in juggling the lives of four little ones on my own, I believe, I became addicted to the fast pace in which I was accustomed. So when it stopped suddenly, I found myself immersed in an extremely anxious, uncomfortable state. I don’t suffer from this anymore, even though I am still actively raising a nine year-old — the straggler of the brood.
I have learned a great deal in my twenty-seven years of parenting, which includes the true value of the white spaces that exist between all of the activities, responsibilities and busy-ness. These white spaces bring a peacefulness to life, otherwise lost, and initiate times of reflection — two amazing attributes that make me a better, more emotionally ‘present’ mom and daily life, more meaningful and easy.
There’s beauty and sheer artistry in each and every one of them, much of which new and young moms miss for the very same reasons that I did — addicted to the pace and a faulty understanding of time. Today, I treasure those white spaces because I know that without them, the masterful strokes between and around them would be dimmed, nonexistent, or overlooked completely.
It is the same reason we become wiser and more talented with age. We realize that “what isn’t seen (the quiet) is just as important as what is (the noise)…if not more.”
As summer quickly approaches and we find ourselves entrenched in making plans that will carry us through to the beginning of the school year once again, might I suggest allowing for some white spaces to exist in those plans. You and your family may find yourselves truly relishing the change of pace and even adopting it into your lifestyle all year round.
The added balance will go a long way for certain. Try it and see.