The last couple of years I've been 'listening' to the almost daily conversation two of my daughters have about babies, husbands, health, home and the future. Living more than 2,000 kilometres apart our little 'messenger' group keeps the three of us in touch with what's happening in our day to day lives.
Our chats can run from teething and nappy rash to losing the car keys at the supermarket and choosing to stay calm with two toddlers who just want to go home now, or offering recipe advice and cleaning ideas, a sounding board for future plans, or a safe place to collapse into armfuls of loving encouragement when life is a tad overwhelming and only a mum or sister can understand.
My girls inspire me with the women they have grown into, indeed the women, wives and mothers they are still becoming. I love that they ask my advice, but I also appreciate that they are there when I need it too. This giving and taking, sharing of what we have learned and what we still would like to know is such a gift and the fruit of it is mutual respect for each other, a trust and honesty which has been built over time.
Though their lives are somewhat hectic with little ones to care for, there's also a slow simplicity and 'joy in the moment' which resonates through both of their personalities. The delight they have in their family, their husbands, their homes, is beautiful...and last week it reminded me that I may have begun to rush again, not intentionally, but enough that I'm not taking time to enjoy my ordinary moments as often as I should.
This needed pondering.
Working backwards I discovered my return to rush and busyness coincided with the increase in migraines the past couple of months. My neurologist has me keeping a migraine diary now and it's quite clear three weeks along that I try to do twice as much work on my good days to make up for my bad days.
No wonder the sense of bustle and hurry follows me.
This weekend I decided not to sew. Now believe me I thoroughly enjoy stitching, but it's work and I rarely sew anything that's not work due to the many hours my designs take (from drawing board to the end process of pattern writing)...so I made the choice not to do any Elefantz work until Monday morning.
Instead I baked, read, did a little housework, went for a wonderfully long and relaxing drive in the country with my husband, and I knitted.
It's been a long time since I knitted anything, and it was only going to be a plain garter stitch dishcloth at first, but you know, that's because I didn't think I had much time for anything else.
So now, valuing the slowing of weekend time, I decided to play with a stitch design from long ago (Old Shale), one all my children have worn in little cardigans when they were babes.
It will be a pretty woolen polishing cloth when I'm done, and my fingers are sore because they're being used in a different way, but my it was a delight to be knitting again.
And the baking.
Rosie Heather came for a visit on Friday and I played around with a recipe in my head which turned our beautifully (blueberry & lemon ricotta muffins).
Sunday afternoon I baked for Mr E, a moist apple chocolate cake, also delicious. In fact it's a recipe you make in a food processor and my beloved husband had bought me a new processor for my birthday last month but I've been 'too busy' to use it. Isn't that sad?
Returning to a slower pace is good for my soul, it's a blessing to my family and it's better for my health and state of mind.
I knew that as soon as the decision was made to separate work and the weekend...as though I needed to give myself permission to have two days off and enjoy other things.
I know it's great to work from home and I'm blessed to do so given that with migraines as prevalent as mine working outside the home is not a possibility, but it also has it's drawbacks because work is always there right in front of you and there's truly always something to be done.
I'm so very grateful for the insights into my own life which God brings about through the conversations with, and between, my dear daughters, and this insight especially because it has given me what was needed to step off the busy-go-round and choose the slower path once more.
Are you needing to slow down or step back a little?