I am finding myself having to make a conscious effort to slow down. One of the reasons I left my job was to find a more sustainable life at a more comfortable pace that would allow me to stop, look, breathe and experience, rather than, hurry, worry, rush, and obsess.
A colleague of mine who left her job four years ago warned me that this would be a detox month. I get a sense that the, “now what” alarming feeling is just about to sound but I keep hitting the snooze button, distracting myself with miscellaneous overdue tasks and going to yoga.
Harper’s understanding of the world around her is growing as exponentially as her vocabulary. At three years old, she doesn’t yet appreciate the concept of a clean house but she knows there are probably better and more fun things to do with our time. The following is a true recap of a conversation we had last Friday.
I was cleaning the sliding glass door that was covered in handprints, dirt, smeared food and markers. I was on the backyard side and watched her run up to the inside of the window that I had just cleaned. It was one of those slow motion moments. Her arms outstretched, her hands slimy and dripping with yogurt. She pressed herself directly into the glass like a starfish.
“What are you doing mom?” She yelled, mouth on the glass.
“Harper, stop! I just cleaned that!”
“Stop ruining me, mom!”
[Dramatic pause] I opened the door.
“What did you just say?”
“Stop ruining me. You are missing the fun.”
Boom. And that’s me getting told by my toddler.
Oh, man. Did she just say that? Her sister was napping otherwise I likely would have thrown them in the car and drove them somewhere far away and exciting, leaving my cleaning supplies in the (literal) dust, proving that gosh darn it, I am fun. (Just put on your helmet, please.)
I’m sure there will be events far more worthy of the “you’re ruining me” protest in years to come, just like there will be plenty more opportunities for me to teach her about keeping the house tidy. But for now, I’m taking her message to heart because there is so much fun to be had. I’m starting to see things more clearly through the smudged glass.