Sometimes when I complain about being busy, I have to remind myself one day, it will all be over.
One day, I won’t be packing lunches at dawn while I sip coffee through squinted eyes. One day, I won’t be running to a day job and collaborating with others to do fulfilling work. One day, I won’t be penciling events into a calendar, shaking my head in disbelief.
In the stark silence, it will finally occur to me: It was all so wonderful.
So I try now to stop. To listen. To breathe. To really digest the fact that this life that is so busy and hectic need not be overwhelming.
It is beautiful.
It is a hummingbird in full color, vibrating with all that is.
Vibrating with dinner to be made. Vibrating with field hockey games to attend. Vibrating with arguments about having no time for myself.
On my way to work today, I was feverishly shoving cheese and grapes in my mouth, wishing I carved out enough time to eat before I left the house. I was doing what I do well: wishing my life could be different than it actually is.
Not in big, dramatic ways, but in small ways like having more time and not feeling as though I’m being pulled in so many directions at once that the pace runs me over.
At that moment, I looked out my mom-van window and saw an older woman at a bus stop. There she stood leaning against her grocery cart with a blank look in her eyes that translated as utter boredom. I bet she was busy once. I bet she made the lunches, rushed to work, argued about not having enough time for herself. And now she thinks upon that time as the “good old days.”
The thing is, being busy is a blessing. It’s the world whispering to us that we are needed, appreciated, and add to the vibrations. Slowing down is lovely and necessary, but I need to remind myself I can find peace and contentment even while I’m busy. Being busy is not punishment — it is the reward.
I don’t need to be on a beach with a drink in my mind. I can relish in the fact that I have places to be and people to connect to. I don’t have to wait until retirement to relax. I can find relaxation in my current life that is busy and alive with gorgeous chaos.
The singer Nightbirde said, “You can’t wait until life isn’t hard anymore before you decide to be happy.” That stole my breath when I heard it. It’s simple yet profound.
I can be happy today, and so can you.
When we’re drowning in imperfections as the world tugs at us and we exhale in exhaustion at night, we can be happy and grateful for being busy. Our metaphoric shopping cart awaits our arrival one day alone at the bus stop. Until then, we can jump in the choppy waves and laugh maniacally at the storm and realize there’s no place we’d rather be than right here.
Your Turn: Do you agree? What can you do to be more grounded in your own life right now and embrace all of it instead of focusing on what you don't have?