Before all this started, each Sunday, we would rotate a family supper between ourselves and our best friends. We’d go to their house or they’d come to ours, we’d share a meal. Have some libations. Play hide n seek with our little people. We’d snack and story and gossip and breathe before the work week kicked off.
Now, it’s a different world. While this week we had a video chat with them to reconnect – who doesn’t melt at the sound of four year olds saying “I love you” and “goodbye” to each other – I’m finding that much of my “therapy” for the week is done over the stove top. Not so much in eating my emotions, not to say I don’t do that from time to time, but more in stirring and listening to my thoughts.
That’s one thing I have found in this period. The days are much slower, and I’m finding much more time and value in contemplation of things rather than the “rush, hurry and do it already” that life had before this. Now I find myself listening to the sizzle of onions, the deglazing of a skillet or the beautiful moment mushrooms go from raw to perfectly carmelized. In those moments where my favorite wooden spoon scrapes the pan in a soothing rhythm, I’m finding that time to think things through, and make better decisions.
I guess now I’m wondering, when did I get so hurried? I’m pretty sure I required this more of myself. I’m pretty sure it was supported (for lack of a more negative word) by the lifestyle we’ve kept. I know I’m not alone in this, we are all trying to win the rat race, and I’m making the conscience decision to slow down. This doesn’t mean that I’ll accomplish less, it just mean what I do accomplish, will be more quality. Why run after something if it’s not worth it all? Why just tick off a box in a to do list of things to show people?
Not me. Not anymore. I’ve taken this spoon-to-pan time to consider that my bucket list needs to be more quality, less quantity. I’ve started to consider making big splashes where they count for me and my family rather than making a whole punch of stomped on puddles.
Slowing down my days has been the best gift ever. The easy wins are more family time, conversations with my husband, quality time with my kid. But as I laid my head on his shoulder this weekend as we sipped coffee, I said “this is a strange normal”, and he said, “I like this normal”. Me too. This normal that forces us to reconsider what we thought was “so right”, only to expose that slowing down, dialing back and taking a little more contemplation time isn’t so much indulgent – as necessary to live a fuller life.
Stir on everyone.