Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Hurry, slow down...

Since I turned sixty in January, I seem to have this conflict going in me all the time: Hurry up/Slow down.

I need to hurry up and accomplish things like get my work published, sell my cards, de-clutter my house so my kids won't have to do it, travel everywhere, experience new things. I'm mature, but not too old to still be daring. I've still got my brain (although I am forgetting things and have a little more trouble recalling details). I'm in pretty good shape physically and have started working out several days a week.

And yet I need to slow down too. I don't have to lead a discussion group on every great book I come across. I don't have to organize trips for everybody or plan the family gatherings if I don't want to. I don't have to do laundry every time it peeks over the rim or wash the dishes before they hit the sink. What if I only had a year to live (like a couple of my friends); what would I slow down to do?

I'm stuck between feeling urgency to get things done before it's too late and giving myself a well-deserved rest. On my day off, I look around my house and think of the drawers and closets full of stuff that needs to be given or thrown away, and then go to the deck and sit in the sun doing nothing.

My life has never been about being balanced; I've always gone ninety miles an hour. Maybe it's time to find the right balance between hurrying up and slowing down. Taking up and giving up in equal proportion with a little discernment about what really makes me excited. More of that subtracting and adding, I guess. And I've always been good at math.

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