Beauty in the First World dog pile

Yesterday hit me like a freight train.  I had all the best intentions to spend some quality time with the boys as we close this last week of summer, but clearly that’s not what the universe had in store.

All of my first-world, privileged duties decided to dog pile into one day.

The first hour of the morning was spent cleaning giant, disgusting doggie accident off the brand new carpet upstairs.  That joyous exercise was quickly followed by a scheduled phone call with our featured guest for the GNO next month (eek!  I can’t wait).  Then greeting the pair of contractors who came to fix some doors ended stayed all day with their saws, hammers and paint.  That was  accompanied by the back to school doctor’s office calls, paperwork and outrageously long new insurance verification process.  Lunch for my two, plus a friend.  The trying on and purchasing of school shoes that actually fit.  Bathing the skin-infected dog.  (Why not bathe them both, since we’re already here?!?)  A call to the mortgage company, refilling the dog med pill counter, a run to Costco, returns to Target, a tutoring session and dinner.

There’s clearly no need to go on.

As women, these are the things that often fill our days.  Whether you squeeze them in on nights and weekends, during lunch from work, or get the privilege to do them during the day with your kids flailing around in the background, it’s the reality of our privileged lives.

But just because it’s the result of privilege, doesn’t mean it feels like a privilege.  

Sometimes the grind of the never-ending to-do list full of tasks that have no clear significance or meaning beyond surviving this day, can leave you feeling exhausted and discouraged.  Especially if you’re motivated by a high desire to move the ball forward.  It can feel like being stuck, knee-deep in mud.  I know it does for me sometimes.

So what can you do about it? 

First, acknowledge and accept it for what it is.  It’s normal.  It’s real life.  We all have maintenance tasks.  We all have days when they pile up and feel like drudgery.  It’s not a conspiracy against your productivity or significance in the world.

Acknowledging the normalcy of it and adjusting your expectations will free you up to see the beautiful moments.  

Some days, you may have to look harder than others, but the precious moments are there. . .  A shared connection with the woman in the Target return line.  The chance to really listen to the story of a colleague.  A roar of laughter from your kids helping you scrub diah off the carpet.  The connection felt through the empathy of a friend or spouse at the end of a long day.

They’re there, those fleeting moments.  

Pay attention.  Make a mental note of each one, so your heart can begin to take hold of them.  Speak gratitude out loud as often as possible.  Get as much rest as you can and then, get up to start again.

There’s joy, beauty and meaning in the dog pile.  

You just have to look for it.

to more love,

Crystal

 

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