Elbows in my stomach, sticky hands on my face, on my lap not next to it, lurking outside the bathroom door, bursting into my bedroom. But it’s not just physical space I crave. When I’m stick, tired, or overwhelmed, I feel like life is closing in around me, like I can hardly get a clear breath of air.
This summer was a bit challenging since the kids’ release from school coincided perfectly with me not feeling well. The summer waves of vacations and houseguests—though welcome—did feel kind of overwhelming at times. But still. That’s life.
I think, some people, when they’re sick or overwhelmed or whatever, bail out. They tell the world, “No, I can’t drive carpool / make your dinner / teach Primary / watch your kids / go on an outing.” I almost never cancel. I do it all. But with teeth clenched and a grim expression on my face. All summer long I think my kids suffered with a mildly grumpy and detached mom, rarely an enthusiastic and warm one.
The need for a bit of space—psychological and otherwise—is real and valid. But still. In the coming year, I’ll have plenty of times when I feel exhausted, sore, distracted, and burdened. I’ve got to find a way to be patient and joyful regardless.
I think I’ll start with bailing out on Levi’s Cub Scout pack meeting tonight.