I have been having a feeling lately of frantically rushing through my life. The world seems to move so swiftly and I seem to be carried along with the biggest current. So much needs to be done and never enough time to accomplish everything in a day, a moment, a lifetime.
I have a great fear of missing out on something if I do not keep up a steady pace of frenzied going forward. I am afraid life will pass me by if I fail to suck up every minute as if it were the last swish in a quickly melting ice laden glass of Pepsi. I scare myself with this insane need of grabbing everything in sight and being greedy by wanting to experience every event life has to offer. Today I wondered why. And I wondered how many other people are living or thinking they are living by involving themselves in the whirlwinds of everyday.
Typical days start at six a.m. or earlier. They are infuriating as I scream and rant, "Get up! Get ready! Get going!" and so on. The days are filled with, "What do I need to do? What have I forgotten? What do I need to do later? Can I fit that in somewhere?" And the day ends with "What did I fail to get done? What comes next? Tomorrow I have to do…" and my brain will not be quiet as I question what I missed out on. I realize that I have very little peace in my mind or my life for that matter.
I think the reason this is happening, is that I am forgetting to live in my own life at all. I am rushing through it instead. I am only touching base, not really experiencing it at all.
You may ask what has caused this moment of rethinking my existence. It was my youngest daughter showing me a rainbow on the wall. She created a moment of pause in the midst of my internal chaos.
The day started with me being horribly nasty and crabby when I woke instead of being thankful that I woke at all. I hate to admit it, but I am the Queen of Ridiculous Moodiness in the morning. I tell the children to get up and get ready. I scream ten minutes later to get up and get ready. I sit a minute and have a cup of coffee hoping it will change my mood and it doesn't. I yell at the kids again to get up and get ready. I go upstairs and bathe and then I go sit a moment longer and have another cup of coffee hoping it will make me feel better and it doesn't. I need to use the bathroom and both are occupied by children who have finally crawled out of their beds. This makes me crabbier. The dog is whining to go out and I yell for someone to let him out and no one does-so I do it. Bathroom is free and I go and come out. I do the dishes and I am crabby because I yell for someone to let the dog in and they don't-so I do it. I go to do my hair and make up and as soon as I walk in there-one of the kids needs to use the bathroom. It never fails; it is every day this happens.
Finally I am ready and no one else is. I yell, "Get ready! Brush your teeth, comb your hair! Did you change your socks for Pete's sake? No wonder your shoes smell." They are lounging and I am rushing to get them ready. I am rushing to get ready to start the next part of the day because I am afraid I will miss something if it doesn't start just then.
Kate stands in the kitchen-still in her pajamas. Her hair is long and knotted and we are leaving in thirteen minutes. Her breakfast is spilled across the kitchen table and she is oblivious to the fact. I am fuming. Oh boy, am I fuming as I sop up Cocoa Kripsies gluing themselves to my kitchen table.
"Why aren't you ready? What is wrong with you? We are leaving in thirteen minutes?" And on I go yelling, running through the house, gathering up the hairbrush and her clothes. "Kate you make me nuts!" I yell and stub my toe on the door frame. "Damn it!" I scream as I run downstairs and look through sock mountain for a matching pair.
"Mom…" she is calling softly. "Come look at this…"
"I don't have time. Brush your hair already." On I zoom, grabbing folders to stuff in her book bag.
"Mom…just look" she is standing still and mesmerized by what I don't have time to look at.
"What? What is so important that you are making me late?" I shout.
She points to the corner of the kitchen. "There's a rainbow on the wall."
"I don't have time…"and I stop in mid sentence. There is a rainbow on my wall. And it is beautiful. And I am as still as she is.
"It's so pretty, Mom." Kate says.
"Yeah, it is."
"I didn't want you to miss it." She grabs her clothes and runs upstairs. She comes down seven minutes later. She still looks a mess because that is Kate. She is always a mess but sometimes I really think she has more of life figured out than I ever will.
And then the day continued as they always do-rushing on through life.
I need to remember this day. I will put a gold ribbon on it in the memory box I carry around in my brain.
It isn't the rushing through that is really living. Our lives are not measured by what we accomplish or how much. It is the pauses in-between everything else we think is important. While I am hurrying and trying to make life really happen; it already is happening. And I am missing it. In my frantic pace I am missing the most important things. I am missing the wonder of rainbows on the walls.
Monika M. Basile