Busy {a four letter word}



Every time I'm asked, "How are you today?", my default answer is, "Busy".

I'm busy. My kids are busy. My husband is busy. Everyone in this household is busy.

And it's summer. Summer of all the times of the year! I have vague memories of me planning to have a no bullshit, laid back summer. We just had to make it to the end of dance season which was quite literally June 30th. Make it to June 30th and we'd have the rest of the summer to relax.The plan was to take a few dance classes, lounge by the pool, casually drop in at Starbucks, browse the aisles of Target. Summer was going to save us all and allow us to relax and be lazy...

But June 30th came and went and here we are almost July 30th and we are still busy. 

Busy has become a four letter word.

Back when I first started blogging and Pinning (what did I actually do before Pinterest? Oh yeah, laundry), I remember seeing this quote, "Stop the Glorification of Busy". I googled it a few weeks ago, and the origin of it is a little spotty, but this article seems to have quoted it first. Why are people everywhere glorifying the fact that they are busy. It feels like the biggest one-ups-manship contest on Earth. Tell someone what you are doing, they will tell you they are doing the same, but like three more things. As if that makes us super human. Are we any happier cramming every second of the day with an activity? Does it make a difference if we keep ourselves and our families so busy? Do we look better as mothers or parents if our kids are in sixteen activities over the summer? I hope not, because we have skipped so much dance this year to swim or go to the movies, I'm worried about being voted off the "island". It's like we are trained to show off just how busy we are. Look at my Instagram feed and I will tell you everything I did on any given day all before nine in the morning, in addition to a fantastic selfie. Does that make me a champion? Only when other people who follow my account tell me what a good job I'm doing. And sometimes that feels kind of gross. Look at me, I'm so awesome because I've already made three dozen cookies, folded two loads of laundry, and got my kids to school on time... Eww. I hate that person. I hate a humble brag, especially when that humble brag is me. Gross, and yet, I'll probably do it tomorrow. I'm so busy damn it, look at me!

One Wednesday near the of the school year I went and sat for my usual three hours at dance. Our longest dance day of the week. With just a few weeks to go before the end of the year, I had my PTC notebook, my Girl Scout notebook, and my planner. I was making list. Calling and emailing. Organizing the end of the year dance and practice schedule. Another mom sitting near me said, "I don't know how you do it", and I said, "I don't know either, and I don't even work".

Now looking back I have an idea of how I "do it".

The answer is simple, I "don't" do a lot of other things.

For example, in order to make sure all this years school spirit wear is ordered, my dining room table is covered in things. Crap, if you will, that needs to find homes. That may not find homes for another week. While I'm doing Girl Scout planning at my co-leader's house, the dishes in my sink continue to marinate making what can only be described as the worlds most disgusting and deadly brew of Kombucha ever. If you see me volunteering anywhere, you can bet my laundry is clean and piled like Mt. Everest on my bed, and when I go to climb into said bed, the mountain will be moved to the chair by the window that I promised would not serve as a place to pile laundry. You can bet that my bathrooms look like someone stepped on a tube of toothpaste (courtesy of the children), there are always dishes, and laundry in the dryer that gets ironed by turning it on.

So how do I do "it"?

Chaotically. Messily. By the seat of my Old Navy "mom" shorts. 

I'm not proud of the busy, but I'll admit that I would have been a few years ago. When my girls were little, busy seemed like a badge of honor. Good moms, the gold star moms, were busy. They were always on the go, kids dressed and ready, every activity under the sun, and "Busy Moms" always dressed the part. Yoga pant sweat suits, jeans and tunics, and sometimes dresses. (Dresses!) I envied those moms back then, with their perfectly packed diaper bags, yogurt melts and Cheerios at the ready. I was always the hot mess mom, only able to make it to one activity (baby gym), hair rarely combed, make up never a thought. I saw those buys moms and wondered if I'd ever be there, ever able to carry it off with such ease. Little did I know there was no ease about it. Being a busy mom is fucking hard. It takes time and effort, and a lot of messes left in the wake. 

I'm a smart enough now to understand that motherhood never stops. I'm just surprised that I'm busier now than I have ever been.  I used to think that once my kids were older, motherhood would be so much easier. Sure they can get their own breakfast and let me sleep in on weekends, but they need a taxi driver to cheer and dance, and those four birthday parties that all fall on the same Saturday of the month. It's a never ending ride, or as all the cliche quotes will tell you... It's a marathon, not a race. Insert eye roll here. Not because I don't believe it, but because I know it all too well.

Two thousand seventeen has proven to be the busiest year on record. Maybe because I'm older and care about such things. Maybe because I'm old and tired and want to cut out any and all bullshit. At this breakneck speed, my house is always in disaster mode, not sorry. There are currently dishes in my sink and clothes my the dryer. Also, not sorry. The flip side, the school spirit wear shirts are ready to go to print, my Girls Scout troop calendar and budget are done for the next year, and we pretty much have our dance schedule locked in. I'm also working more hours this summer to bank away some funds. It appears that yes, this house hold is doing "it". Just don't ask to use my bathroom when you come over. Kind of sorry.

Today was my day off. I did my best to stretch out our lazy time. We lounged around and slept and read books and of course my oldest daughter made slime, because if your kids aren't making slime at any given time are you even a mother? I've tried really hard to make sure we have those kind of days at least once a week this summer. The Netflix binge kind of days. The, let's melt our brains on bad TV and horrible food kind of days. I want my kids to relax and have some lazy fun. Summer is only like twelve weeks, the rest of the time they are over scheduled and over stimulated. I want them to find joy in staying up late and sleeping in the next day. The joy of ice cream for dinner. The joy of doing absolutely nothing. 

Because most days we are busy.

Which has become the dirtiest four letter word I know.

XOXO - Meg

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  2. I'm trying to cut the answer "busy" from my responses. It's hard not to...but it's one of those auto-answers that can sum up what's happening. It's a hard habit to break.

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