Katlin Puchalski shares with us a picture of what it is like in her busy life, and how sometimes slipping into the orderly life of social gaming is just want she needs to put her oxygen mask on first before continuing on with her day. Katlin says it better than me:
I don’t want to write. I don’t want to read aloud. I don’t want to cook dinner. I don’t want to fold laundry or clean the living room. I don’t want to harvest tomatoes or feed chickens. I don’t even want to pick up children from dance classes. I want to sit in my own clean, quiet, little bedroom and play Gardenscapes, or Two Dots on my phone. Yes, today has been a hard day; but aren’t they all? There is always something: a crisis, maybe big or maybe small, or a situation, an event, that needs my immediate attention.
There are so many shoes that need to be found or tied, homework that needs translation or to simply to be found, or some piece of missing clothing is necessary “right now” and nothing else will do. There are games and events to attend, as well as animals that need tending. Not to mention work, an actual paying job, that needs me to be able to focus and fix mechanisms and tools. There is wood to bring in and the lawn to mow, one more time. Oh, and there is a shower to be had, some time! I am in high demand all day, from my children, from myself, from the chores, from work, from the garden or the house. There is always SOMETHING.
I would like to retreat into my room, with my colorful wool blanket from Ireland. I would sit in the sunshine that is streaming onto the bed, or with the moon shining brightly through the picture window. I want to pretend there is nothing, (or not much), that needs my attention, if only for 30 minutes. I want to play mindless and ‘silly’ games, quietly, alone.
In my ‘silly games’ things are predictable and reliable, (even if that predictability is running out of lives). The outcome is easy to see and the steps fairly regular, (although with just enough twists and turns to hold my attention much longer than it should!). There are several ‘do-overs’, and helpful hints buttons. Real life doesn’t have those. Real life is messy and complicated and stressful. Real life goes fast and slow, and round and round, all at the same time. But real life also has love and cuddles and fairy kisses.
Real life has stories to read while snuggling all together, morning and night, in anticipation of the next plot twist. Real life is busy, but it is MY busy. My busy has moments of laughter and giggles, as well as times of quiet contemplation. I start my day with a cheerful breakfast, bonding with my 13-year-old. And at the end of my day is snuggling my nine-year-old, among all her stuffed animals and dolls and books. And the middle of my busy day is hearing about capture the flag at recess and the crazies of sixth-grade girls from my eleven-year-old, quiet, but steady middle daughter. Mountains are waiting to be climbed and rivers to be explored. Family adventures abound around here! One daughter has mastered a new piece of music today and another perfected a tricky dance step this evening, and a third is riding her ‘horse’, otherwise known as a bike round and round the house. And then there are so many bedtime stories and snuggles to be had, (before they don’t need them anymore). My day is busy and messy and crazy but full of energy and love.
Soon, I will go read the book, while helping with Algebra and cooking dinner. Then I will do some endless laundry, and drive somewhere for a practice pick up or drop off. And I will end the day snuggling each one and marveling at their growth. … But for now, I will slip away for a few moments, and plant some imaginary trees, or pop some bubbles or dots of varying colors, until I run out of ‘play’ lives. I will be refilled to happily rejoin the rest of my Busy Bee day.