It stings to type it. Just as it scraped to even think it. I certainly know how to work hard, and do when I am getting paid to, but in my personal life, I think it's time to admit that laziness is a deficit I need to address.
If you're wondering how I could just now be figuring this out, read on. Perhaps your laziness has been masquerading as other things, too.
- "I feel so overwhelmed." This past year, I have said this to Bill a few times, and to myself, many more. It is such a solid, legitimate, unarguable statement. And over and over, the train of thought that follows this engine is, "I'm so overwhelmed, I don't know where to start, I can't get anything done." At the end of the day, the caboose comes rolling in, "I'm so overwhelmed, I've gotten so little done, I am feeling paralyzed by how much there is left to do, I just need a break from it all."
So I spend the day in a state of panicky inaction because there is a lot to do.
The evening is a state of regretful inaction because so little got done.
And the morning becomes frustrated, frantic action as I scramble to get to work on time because I spent a fair two, three hours past my bedtime "taking a break" from my stress.
To be fair, it has been an overwhelming year. Death and loss came knocking at our door, and on the doors of many we love.
And the sadness of it all, the deep heavy ache, of things gone wrong that can't be righted, of people gone who we won't see again this side of Heaven, of a baby we briefly held, of our own two we didn't get to meet...these were no small sorrows, indeed.
So when it seemed like I was surviving better than thriving, I chalked it up to the circumstances. How could I expect myself to be productive, considering??
But here's the raw truth: I was no more productive before this difficult year. Now, I've simply been sad and unproductive.
- "I don't have the capacity for this." This is not a train of thought. This is a steamroller of thought that barrels through and leaves me flat. I do not brainstorm how to increase my capacity, I just decide I've reached it, and can't do another thing. (Except maybe go watch a movie, read a book, or waste an hour online) My capacity limit doesn't send me to the logical place: bed. Instead, I almost guarantee to keep my capacity low by not getting enough sleep.
- "I am the fun one in this family. It's my job to make sure that we don't miss out on the good times because we're so busy checking off items on a to-do list." I love how I'm the hero in this one. The trouble with it, though, is that it is just NOT fun for my family to function in varying states of chaos, varying degrees of lateness, and varying levels of unpreparedness. It's really hard to take advantage of a beautiful day with a spontaneous picnic if nobody went grocery shopping and bought a few basics. Kinda hard to see what's so fun about taking a drive in the mountains in a car that resembles a rolling trash bin. (Sure, I'm painting it bleak, but it's easier to see in exaggerated sweeps.)
It brings me back to laziness. Seems like I've realized three things my laziness might be hiding behind:
A sense of being overwhelmed
My sense of capacity: what I can do, or be expected to do
A sense of identity
What I haven't yet thought through: how does one go about getting that balance?
Between taking time to grieve and getting on with what needs to be done
Between working hard and renewing myself
Between getting things done and letting the beautiful happen
Even as I type this, my favorite little boy has crawled up into my lap and is ready to spend time with me again.
Days off with him: sum total of my to-do list: BE with Landon. Somehow, that never feels too lazy.