“So be sure when you step, Step with care and great tact. And remember that life’s A Great Balancing Act. And will you succeed? Yes! You will, indeed! (98 and ¾ percent guaranteed) Kid, you’ll move mountains.” Oh, the Places You’ll Go, Dr. Seuss
Today is November 15th. The halfway mark for #NaNoWriMo2019. I have almost forty-four thousand words written. I have practically finished No Strings Attached. I have five articles for Medium in various stages of completion. And I will have reached the standard goal of fifty-thousand words, touch wood, by Monday.
Then I hope to move on to finish Ægir’s…so, ya’ll can quit screaming at me.
I should be happy, right? Proud? Pleased? Isn’t that what’s important?
Yes, I am. To an extent. I am delighted that goddess willing and the creek don’t rise, I will ‘win’ NaNo once more.
But the thing is…NaNo and even writing are not everything.
My life is full. Aren’t all of our lives? I have the world’s most wonderful partner and daughter. I have a beautiful home that is a project in itself and less than half-finished. I have other creative outlets like photography, sewing, crafting, and quilting. I have cooking and cleaning. I have friends and family. And I have my health to consider too.
The thing is…all too often we don’t realize that the most crucial thing in this world is not money or fame or success. The most precious commodity we have is time. It is only as we age and feel that time slipping away through our frail and arthritic fingers that we understand just how precious time is.
There are only twenty-four hours in a day, and we need to sleep away at least one-third of that. Now subtract bathroom breaks and eating. Worse yet, for many, if not most of us, our work, the thing we do to earn money, is a negative, a drain on our resources.
Even me, who is blessed to be doing what I love most, caring for my family, even I don’t have enough time to…
- Write all the books, tell all the stories of all the people running around in my crazzy warped mind.
- Read all the other great books that I have on my To Be Read list.
- Sew all the doll clothes, quilts, and other projects that I have bought the material for.
- Cook for my beloved partner.
- Clean our @HomeCrazzyHome.
- Grow as much of our own food as I can.
- Keep the local park clean and in order.
- Discuss all the brilliant and life-changing ideas I have with Alan and PanKwake.
- Take all the photos I can see in my head.
- And, of course, take care of my body so that I have more years in which to do all those things.
Honestly, if I lived to be one-hundred, I could not get everything done that I want to achieve. Even a thousand. I mean have you seen the size of the British Library or the Library of Congress. Yet if all you did was read, sleep, eat, and poop, you could not read all those books in a thousand years.
So, how the f^ck do we know what to do? What is most important?
That is the question I have been struggling with lately. Last week, I missed my 10k+ steps more often than I made them. This week, I have missed that goal for the past couple of days. I dare not even step on the scales.
As I write this, I stare at the unfinished Thanksgiving table runner, knowing that tomorrow is my old lady quilting club, and it needs to be finished by then.
And once more, the clouds are gathering in beautiful, sunny Swansea, and I fear that today will be yet another day when I do not get in those all-important steps.
What do you do? How do you know what is essential and what isn’t?
I mean, clearly, Alan and PanKwake come first. But so should my health? Yet finding the energy and motivation to do something about it has been a battle that I am losing lately.
Dr. Seuss really does get that one right…life is a great balancing act. Remember how hard it was as a kid to walk on those narrow walls? And let’s not even think about balance beams and tightrope walkers.
Yet, that is precisely what every minute of every day of our lives is. And we don’t always realize how high up we are or just how dangerous it really is.
So, what do we do? Heck, what do I do? I have passed my daily #NaNo goal now. The weather is getting worse by the moment. But if I don’t get my fat a$$ up and out of here, it is going to be three days in a row that I failed to achieve my step goal. Oh, and I am staring at that table runner, knowing I need to rip out a bunch of what I did yesterday and start again.
What do I do? What is the right answer? Where is my balance? How do I even know if I have achieved it?
So, yes, I am ‘winning’ NaNO, but am I winning this extraordinary game of all, the game we call LIFE?