Monday, February 28, 2011

On Bagels and Impressionism

"How do you do it?" someone asked me recently. Meaning write and homeschool and be a mom and get involved in community activities. 

Well, it's not as if on Day One I woke up with nothing to do, and on Day Two I added five children, a job, and a pile of volunteering obligations. No, I started by having a job and getting married. And then I had a baby and a husband and a job. Then I lost my job, and started freelancing. Then I had another baby. Then I added one volunteer activity. And so on.

To some people, the idea of having more than two kids is mindboggling. To others, raising children in the city borders on the impossible. (I get letters from readers of Daily Guideposts on this. The reason I raise kids in an urban area is that I'm a better mom when I have access to good bagels. Well, that and other reasons, which include the fact that I don't have a driver's license.)

Signac, Paul. Clipper, Asnieres (1887)
I do what I do the same way as you: you do it, instead of thinking about it. And I accept that I'm not always going to do everything well. And I focus my thoughts on what kind of picture my life is painting. And since painting a life is a pointillist endeavor, something that builds one dot of color at a time, I step back every now and then to see if this jumble actually reflects my priorities in life, or if it's more like the toppings on an everything bagel, tasty but going nowhere except down my throat.

And then I re-work things so they form a better picture, and change my palette if need be.

Ultimately that's how much control we have over life: we're given one point at a time. Maybe that one point is meaningless, or maybe it makes a difference. It all depends on your perspective.

1 comment:

  1. Great post! Reminds me to stop thinking over certain things so much and get into Nike mode (Just Do It).