I finished a run and made myself a steak.

It was early afternoon, but I felt like having a beer.

I washed down my steak with a beer, and then another one, all while watching The Fight Club in my sweat-encrusted clothing.

I leisurely picked the candy I liked out of bowls lying around my brother’s living room. (He kindly let me crash with him that summer.)

When he got home, we decided we wanted to see the newly released Pirates of the Carribean. So we did.

This was on a weekday, people. A weekday.

Now my weekdays look like this:

  • Wake up at way too early
  • Get food, self and kids ready for the day
  • Drive 40 miles in traffic, stopping at two different daycares before landing at work
  • Work, using lunch/pumping time to write sanity-saving posts
  • Drive another 40 miles in traffic, with the same two stops on the way back home
  • Get first kid fed and into bed
  • Get second kid homeworked, fed and into bed
  • Wonder where the heck the last fifteen hours went before stumbling through evening chores and crashing

Today I take my leisure in five-minute blocks. When I get it in longer blocks, my brain overloads at all the possibilities. What the heck am I even supposed to do with an hour? Three hours? A whole day?

Mind. Blown.

What I’d like to do now is build a time machine.

I’d use that time machine to go back in time and live that runsteakbeercandyFightClubPirates afternoon all over again, not even for the experiences but for the freedom of it all.

When done, I’d leave a note for my summery law student self to savor the heck out of those entire days of lounging. I’d sign it off:

What’s coming will be beautiful, too, and you’ll get through the stuff that’s not, but for the love of pete! Savor this time. Savor its abundance. Savor not having most moments penciled in. ‘Cause, dude, someday you will spend at least three hours in traffic every single weekday. Three hours. THAT IS NOT A TYPO.

  1. March 10, 2015 at 3:14 pm

    Ha, I hear you on this one. To be able to go back in time, just for one day, and rediscover the freedom we took for granted before we had a ton of responsibilities would be sweet.

    • March 10, 2015 at 5:19 pm

      I had to reread this a few times just to extend the heady rush of glee from imagining this! Aaaaaah. (Love what I’ve got, but a day’s refresher would be priceless.)

  2. Charlie
    March 10, 2015 at 3:15 pm


    • March 10, 2015 at 5:20 pm

      That afternoon kept running through my head yesterday, but I couldn’t piece together why until today! Aaaah, the appreciation from insight!

  3. March 10, 2015 at 3:33 pm

    I have way too much free time, that I spend lots of time wishing, waiting for my days to get really busy again. But your post just opened my eyes! I need to savour this because in a few months it will all be over and I have nothing to show for it!
    It’s interesting how life slows down and speeds up. Soon your days will start to slow down as the kids get older and you leave/change jobs. It might not be ‘soon’, but when I comes, it will certainly seem soon~! I say enjoy every moment of livable life.

    Three hours in traffic is a massive chunk of time!

    • March 10, 2015 at 5:26 pm

      Please savor it for me!

      In principle, I believe every living, breathing moment is a valuable one to be cherished … and yet, for one who so values movement, that time strapped in a car surrounded by a sea of almost motionless cars on all sides gets harder and harder the longer I sit in that car. I feel the restlessness through my bones.

      It seems so absurd to be a mile from one of my boys and just have to sit there (knowing I could run to him faster!), wanting sooooo badly to hold him after a long day away … but to be unable. Because traffic. I am working on reframing this for greater contentment, but it’s proving easier said than done! 🙂

  4. March 10, 2015 at 3:45 pm

    Lmao oooh boy! Hey thanks for the encouragement today, Deborah. As you can see, I decided not to run away from home. Instead I decided interior decorating was in order! It’s been very satisfying 😉 See you soon. Hugz

    • March 10, 2015 at 6:59 pm

      I was–and am!–so glad to see that. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s to come, too. 🙂

      • March 10, 2015 at 7:20 pm

        Thanks you ☺

  5. March 10, 2015 at 4:07 pm

    Thanks for reminding me to recognize my blessings. NO kids, NO job (kinda by choice), NO commitments except for the ones I make to Himself and my own self … Life is good. How dare I be unhappy? Yet sometimes I am, desperately so, because with all this time I get so little done. I needed this reminder to be grateful that I have the option to go as slowly as my body needs me to go.

    • March 10, 2015 at 7:03 pm

      I read an article recently that talks about how we stretch ourselves to fit whatever amount of time. I remember loving how they broke it down, but don’t remember much of the article itself … just that it was fascinating! I wish I could point you to it, because it helped me feel a little less remorseful about certain things I’d left undone.

      Getting things done has some merits, but there are many merits in many things. Being kind to yourself, IMO, is high atop the list. I hope you will be kind to yourself, no matter how much or little you get done any day. ♥

  6. March 10, 2015 at 4:08 pm

    I definitely hear you on this one!! Did my head in this morning when my son’s school shoe went missing for the umpteenth time and he with all his great initiative decides that no shoe, can’t go to school. No fight. No get up and go. Just instant defeat!! I wasn’t feeling well and my stomach was churning so bending over wasn’t pretty.
    I could so easily take shares in that time machine. Any tickets?

    • March 10, 2015 at 7:04 pm

      Gah! Sending hugs and hopes for a better tomorrow. Once I figure out that whole time machine deal, I’ll send along a ticket for that, too!

      • March 10, 2015 at 7:27 pm

        Thanks, Deborah. You’ll have a thriving enterprise I’m sure!

  7. March 10, 2015 at 4:25 pm

    No wonder we feel like the years are flying by…

    • March 10, 2015 at 7:06 pm

      No joke! I remember a math teacher telling me his math-based idea about why time seems to speed up as we grow older. Really, now I think it’s just that so much time disappears to all the have-to-dos …

      I’m trying to be mindful of the opportunities in each moment so I have a less powerful sense of having missed entire days and weeks. It’s helping, a little.

  8. March 10, 2015 at 5:35 pm

    You’re so right, dear Deb! Savor that time with your kids because time does fly. Find a way to savor that car time, too. My husband has learned several languages while on his lengthy daily commute. He also finds it a great time to listen to music and mentally chill out.

    I’d like a time machine, too! It would be so sweet to be able to hold my daughters as little babies again!

    • March 10, 2015 at 7:17 pm

      I’ve already studied Portuguese, Spanish and a little Japanese in the car so far the last two months. I quickly discovered that studying Portuguese and Spanish simultaneously was a terrible idea, so now I’m focusing on Spanish. After I finish those lessons, it’s on to French … I think. I can only do 30-45 language study minutes per day without feeling fried (to the point of making frustrating mistakes and not picking anything else up). Anthony keeps promising to burn me a calming audiobook we bought off Audible; I wore out the first set we burned.

      Much as I cherish my kids, the time machine portion of this post is definitely, absolutely to experience a little taste of the time before them, when worries were few and time was abundant. I love those kids fiercely. I love the life that allows me to wake up to them each morning. But I am still me, and once in a while, I wish I could have just a few moments to feel the freedom I used to know as a younger me. I know now that there is much more to life than freedom, but that knowledge doesn’t change this intermittent wish to briefly experience simpler times as I did then. Gratitude doesn’t diminish it, either, and I wouldn’t expect it to.

      It’s awesome that you’d use your time machine trip to visit your littler daughters. Maybe I’ll feel that way someday, too. But for now, for now in the middle of what often feels like neverending hubbub, I would choose to use it to feel the before … and then savor the goodness of coming back to this chaotic, lovely now.

      Big, big hugs to you, lady. ♥

      • March 11, 2015 at 7:38 am

        I understand, and I’ve certainly felt as you do. Balancing small children and a career is all consuming. I spent most of my 30s and 40s in a constant state of feeling rushed and stressed and wishing for nothing more than just one hour where I didn’t have to be taking care of someone else.

        It’s surprising to me, now that the kids are grown and well-adjusted, that the time seems like it went by so fast. I sure wouldn’t want to spend too much time back in that hubbub, there are days that I’d like to revisit the sweetness of my littler girls back then.

        I should have also mentioned that I would also take that time machine back to the days of flat abs and college friends and crazy parties! 😉

        Much love right back to ya! ❤

  9. Jen
    March 10, 2015 at 5:49 pm

    You know just the other day I had an evening moment where no one was at my house. I don’t think something like this has happened since the kids were born. Seriously. The chores were done. The boys were at a sleepover and the husband was working. I sat on the edge of my couch totally anxious. For the life of me, I could NOT remember what I used to do when I didn’t have so much responsibility! I didn’t know if sitting there was normal. Or should I be doing something fruitful? So weird…

    • March 10, 2015 at 7:24 pm

      That is exactly it! Even when I do get more than a couple of minutes to relax, I feel a little nervous about the time. What the heck am I supposed to when I don’t have to do something? Is a piano about to fall on my head? It feels very unnatural, though I spend at least a few minutes every day trying to get more comfortable with quiet and stillness.

      I used to spend entire afternoons staring at the ceiling from my bed. Occasionally I’d shift positions and look out the window instead. FOR ENTIRE AFTERNOONS.

      What was that about? How did I do that? I can’t wrap my mind around it.

      • Jen
        March 12, 2015 at 8:47 am

        Lol! I used to do that too. It’s baffling!

  10. March 10, 2015 at 6:00 pm

    I know this song by heart dear kindred closet monster.

  11. March 10, 2015 at 6:51 pm

    I snatch my free time in minutes, too. Last fall the children became ill in succession, and I had to stay home with one at a time for days at a time. I got everything done. Nothing left to do. So unusual.

    • March 10, 2015 at 7:26 pm

      Someday about twenty years from now, I think I’m going to remember this comment as I say to myself, “So that‘s what she was talking about …!” I love the thought. I love the thought, too, of experiencing all the moments between now and then. 🙂

  12. March 11, 2015 at 2:34 am

    Breathing in, the savory flavor of time. Breathing out, the perfect taste of today. ❤

  13. March 11, 2015 at 9:46 am

    I really, really have been thinking about this so much lately. I love my life (for the most part) now, but I definitely took advantage of that wonderful, freedom filled life from way back when!

  14. March 13, 2015 at 4:50 pm

    Thought provoking post with comments as entertaining as the post.

  15. March 23, 2015 at 7:12 am

    I just read an article about mothers and free time. The author called it “confetti time” because there is so little of it, and it’s so broken up during the day that you can’t really do anything fun w it. Just one day would be dreamy!

  1. March 13, 2015 at 1:35 pm
  2. April 23, 2015 at 10:02 am
  3. May 12, 2015 at 9:36 pm

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