Time. There never seems to be enough of it. There’s so much that I have to do and so much that I want to do – and just so many hours in the day before I fall asleep, exhausted.
I keep lists to remind myself of upcoming appointments, phone calls that need to be made, emails that need to be sent, etc., but even when I succeed in crossing off several items on the list, somehow the list just keeps getting longer and longer.
The truth is, now that my youngest child is 19, and those crazy, hectic, stressful child-rearing years are behind me, I am much more in control of my time than I used to be.
If I want to take a Pilates class at 7 o’clock in the morning, I can do it.
If I want to go grocery shopping at 6 in the afternoon, I can do it.
If I want to finish reading a riveting novel until the wee hours of the morning, I can do it – and then go back to sleep for a few hours.
Taking a Time Out for Family
I am blessed with gorgeous, wonderful, amazing grandchildren (spoken like a true grandmother!) and there’s nothing that I love more than to spend time with them, but as opposed to with my own children, I can choose when I am available to babysit or when it’s time to give a hug and kiss and say, “Bye, bye, I’m going home now.”
Six months ago, after working for 23 years in the same office in the field of public relations, I finally got up the courage to leave my job, although still ten years away from retirement age. I desperately needed a change. From a financial perspective, leaving my job with its steady paycheck and social benefits was “inadvisable” as my accountant put it, however, I feel an overwhelming sense of relief. A huge space has been created which is enabling me to explore many intriguing options and new directions. It’s refreshing to have the opportunity to really think about how I want to spend my time over the course of the next decade and beyond.
I’ve updated my CV and even had some interviews about prospective jobs. I’ve joined a creative writing group and I’m taking an on-line course in web content writing. I’m viewing this period as a self-imposed time-out and I’m not jumping into anything yet. I’m using my gut feeling as my gauge. My goal is to find work which I will enjoy and which is meaningful to me – and which I will hopefully get paid well to do.
I like the idea of working from home for now, giving me the flexibility to build my own schedule. I want the freedom to work on a project for a few hours and then go out for a walk, or have a cup of coffee with a neighbor, or email a friend, or prepare one of my scrumptious salads or super-duper smoothies. I want time to go to an exercise class – whether it’s yoga or body sculpting or even Zumba. When I exercise I’m happier, I’m more energetic, and my clothes fit better.
Swimming is my favorite exercise of all and I swim almost every day. I usually swim in the late afternoon – my reward to myself after a busy day. I swim laps while listening to my favorite music on my water MP3, and then relax in the Jacuzzi and take a refreshing shower. There’s nothing like lap swimming to clear my mind, lower my blood pressure and improve my mood.
I could go on and on – but it’s time for a swim.