My husband and I don’t remember what it’s like to have free time. Prior to 2014, we were the type of couple that would take off for a hike at McConnell’s Mills on a whim, or would decide on an impromptu trip to the fountain at the Point, or would binge watch the Dark Knight trilogy, while taking naps in between.
Then, we got engaged, married a year later and pregnant a little less than a year after that. It feels like overnight our lives became a highly orchestrated chaos, with this year being the most chaotic of them all. April alone has brought a new job for him, the sale of our home of 5 years, and the process of purchasing a new home. It feels as though we’re in a constant state of excitement, and I often find myself marveling at the fact that we’re able to function with so few breaks from the changes we’re putting on our plates.
Chaos of this magnitude has changed the way I approach so many areas of our daily life. As our hectic life reached a boiling point towards the end of February, I did some brief soul searching and determined that my focus needed to be on creating a happier home life for myself and my family.
I decided at once to let go of some of the obligations that didn’t bring me joy. For me, joy comes from a few different areas. I get joy out of spending time with my family. Seeing my family members gives me joy. Being outside brings me joy. Creating things or transforming items brings me joy. Reading is one of the most joyful activities I can do, when I get my hands on the right book.
What didn’t bring me joy, however, was constantly fixating on my diet. Counting calories felt monotonous, so I ditched my Weight Watchers membership. Sunday meal prepping was the last thing I wanted to do after a long weekend of activities, so I started making easier lunches a priority. I also felt no joy in being in a classroom setting, so I ditched the online learning I had been begrudgingly participating in.
At this point, there was an increased need for prioritization. As we prepared our home to be listed on the market, I started to realize that saying “yes” to everything others had suggested was leaving little time for what we needed to accomplish. In addition, the more plans we made, the more money we were ending up spending on meals, and the less funds we had available to put into our house. I began to only say yes to those plans which felt incredibly important, like my brother’s birthday. We had to explain to most others that we would gladly schedule a get together after our house was sold.
This season of our life is inherently hectic, and we have no expectation for that to change any time soon. As our son grows, we will be adding more and more to our plate for his best interest. For this reason, it feels incredibly important to begin to prioritize now, so that we can continue these habits in the future.