It happens this way sometimes. Life goes in cycles, and there are some cycles when work takes a mighty big chunk of who I am.
So, now it’s time to get some balance back.
I know, I really, fully know, that I need to do some repair at home. No, nothing major has fallen apart while I’ve been away. But the drifting that happens when work has taken the main chunk of me for too long is almost worse. Because the drifting happens so gradually, so painlessly, that I can look up, and my family is far away, and I don’t even remember how we got here.
Work is still intense. There is endless stuff to do at work right now. I could be there 24/7 and there would still be more to do.
So I have to be very intentional about pulling away from work at the end of the day to be with my family. Intentional, as in planning and making sure. Intentional, as in putting it in the daytimer, as important as any other appointment in my day. Intentional, as in guarding some energy to give to the people I love best in the world.
Last night (after falling asleep on the sofa within minutes of getting home) I did manage (after I woke up) to make dinner for them. A real, hot, homemade dinner (thank GOD for weekend food prep) and it helped. We sat around the table and talked about our days. I looked at their beautiful faces and listened to their voices and remembered why I love these people so much. And then I fell asleep again.
Tonight, I am going to save a bigger chunk of my life energy to stay with it all the way through till bedtime. I’ll smile, I’ll hug, I talk about something other than work. I’m already thinking about each kid, who they are, how they communicate, what they need. I’m already planning my work day. What are the most important things I need to do? What must be done today, and what can wait a day?
I think I’ll put notes in their school lunches too. Maybe in their backpacks. Tell them how great they are. A little surprise and a little smile in their day.
Little things. Life is made of little things. Lots and lots and lots of little things.
And, as they say, someday we’ll look back, and we’ll realize, those were the big things.