Thursday, May 3, 2012


Seems like people are always talking about how to achieve 'balance'. Balancing work and home. Balancing being a mother with being a wife. Balancing caring for your children and maintaining friendships. Balancing the demands of home with the need to look after your health. 

Does anyone REALLY have this figured out? Something is ALWAYS going to 'win', right?And you are always going to feel guilty for NOT doing the other. It's a bitch of a situation. And honestly, I think these things have gotten worse. Kids are rarely outside without parents. Many parents forgo the bus and pick kids up at school (often to drive to super expensive extra curricular activities). So sure - the kids may be getting well rounded and being tended too - but what about the PARENTS? It seems to me that gone are the days that kids would play outside while mom got things done. Children are never alone - which means that parents are doing the 'work' they need to do when the kids are sleeping - leaving the parents no time for themselves. I remember that (after I did my huge list of chores and homework) I would go do something ALONE while my mom cooked or cleaned or whatever. She would leave me home alone while she went to meetings or whatever for the committees she was on.

Now, while I don't think I want to raise my kids exactly as I was (I think my mom missed out on having FUN with me) I am trying to find my version of balance. Like I said in an earlier post - we are finally getting our shit together. Having the ability to help a friend pack up her house to move. Having a mini-dinner party in the middle of the week with friends (take out sushi, but after baby bedtime). I made a fun tee-shirt quilt for my cousin who is about to graduate from high school. We are working at keeping the house in order so it's restful to sit instead of constantly looking at things that need to be dealt with. Organizing freezer meals. Bringing meals to a friend whose son just had open heart surgery. 

Do I still feel like I should be doing more? Yes. I really want to find a reasonable way to motivate and work out more (perhaps that is this month's goal). I would love to be able to sit and really relax with Aaron and talk like we did in the 'olden days' (before we were interrupted every 3 seconds with a toddler request or are just too freaking tired to stay up late talking - and other things - in bed). But I'm starting to feel like we have much more balance in our lives. Instead of needing help from everyone, we are able to help others. Instead of depending on services like Dream Dinners, I'm doing it myself (at about maybe double the work, but a 1/4 of the price). Instead of spending 10 minutes in my closet trying to find a shirt, it's all nice and organized and I'm dressed in 5 minutes. 

What about you all? Do you have a good balance?


BrandiH said...

Great post! Me we have pretty much NO balance what so ever. The only thing close to balance I have is knowing that I am at work from 7-4 and then I'm mom. Wife has pretty much gone out the window and my "me" comes at 3:45am when I get up so I can run. Any suggestions on how to get started?

HereWeGoAJen said...

I think balance is more realizing what is important to you and putting those things first. And realizing what you can let go (my floors, per se) and letting those things slide.

Most of the time I feel like I have good balance. It's when something is out of the ordinary (like we are sick or the fridge breaks) that I lose my balance.

Heather said...

I think about this a lot, particularly in the realm of your comments regarding how parents are with their kids all-the-time. Do you happen to follow Free Range Kids? It's a great blog.

Anyway, now that my oldest is nearly 8 we are working on the free range thing and giving her more independence. She will soon legally be able to stay home alone for short periods of time, like when I go for a run with her younger sister in a stroller, or she won't have to come along to the grocery store all the time. She can't freaking wait.

Work/life balance. Normally it is good these days. We don't have a baby anymore and we have good routines... But this week, we have no balance. A few schedules have collided to make this the busiest week ever, and then we had emergency plumbing repairs to boot. My husband can normally do work like that, but there was no time to get it done, so we get to spend big bucks. Oh well. That's how it goes sometimes! The balance will soon return.

Lauren said...

I feel like I'm finally getting my balance now that my son is 2(tomorrow!!!!) But there's always something tipping the scale so I really need to keep on top of things otherwise shit is out of control ;) And now we're contemplating baby #2 and chaos will reign once again

Jill said...

Balance. When Charlie was born, I quit my job. That changed everything. Balance returned (though other ThIngs got away). But now he is 3 and Rowan 61/2. I'm working again...but balance is there. I think it's just a few years of the crazy unbalanced life...when kids are babies. Hopefully.

Jill said...

And I should also say that I choose just a couple things to focus my energy on...otherwise balance would be impossible. :)