I can be a little intense at times. I (more often than I'd like to admit) can get really caught up in my to-do list(s), especially when there is far more being added on than there is being crossed off. I have been caught up in one of these intense periods lately, with so much on my plate, so much going on, and me getting very overwhelmed.
On Sunday, as I was freaking out over all the things I have to get done over the next two weeks, Scott said, "let's all go feed the ducks at the park this afternoon." We have a little park with a pond just about a mile from our house, with pretty white ducks and friendly geese, and Scott had been taking the girls each weekend for about a month now. But today, he wanted to take Ben too, and wanted me to come. The first thing I said was, "No way. Too much to do today, and I'm already behind." But then I got that look, that look that I think I give far more often than I get, that look that says, "Seriously? Can't you spare 15 minutes???" So I hopped up, got ready, got the girls ready, and waited for Ben to wake up from his nap, and off we went.
We brought $2 worth of quarters to buy some of the duck food they provide at the park (evidently bread is fatal to water fowl? Who knew?!) and filled our empty grocery bags with the little brown pellets. The girls followed Scott to the pond, just like they'd been doing for the past month, and began scattering the food at the edge of the water. I held Ben and we just watched the big girls as they got closer and closer to the ducks, and they crouched down with Scott as they ate the food out of his hand!
And it struck me as he and I were watching the three of them there. Yes I am intense. Yes, Lord knows, I am busy. But there is no reason that I can't take a time out, take a break from myself and enjoy these moments with my family. I was relaxed when we were out by the pond; I was happy and carefree, just watching my babies enjoy themselves. My to-do list was still waiting on me when we got home, but while we were feeding the ducks, I was there, I was present, and I was enjoying the most important people in my life. It was a simple realization, but a necessary one. It's easy for me to get caught up in things I think I need to do, and forget about the things I actually ought to be doing. Taking this little break out with my husband and my family was good for them, and good for my soul.
So the next time I feel overwhelmed, overworked and self absorbed, I'm grabbing the kids, $2 in quarters, and heading out to the pond for a break from reality, and a little emphasis on the important things, while we're feeding the ducks.