Updated: Sep 16, 2019
The best laid plans of mice and men often go awry.This saying adapted from a line in "To a Mouse" by Robert Burns is one of my favourites. Along with "be careful what you wish for ", and my mothers favourite admonishment to me "you'd cut off your nose to spite your face " these homely little sayings pop up in my life every now and then. And so it was that my best laid plans came to rack and ruin.
I had timed the return of my manuscript assessment to coincide with some much needed long service leave. With an air of content smugness and feeling the power of the control freak in me, I had laid down the plans for a glorious few weeks of writing and ticking off all those jobs around home I had been avoiding. The ones I promised myself I would do when life was quiet.
I had been going through a mental life declutter and contemplating minimising my life, cutting back on my ridiculous work load and focussing on regaining my health and wellbeing. Truth be told I have been in the process of doing this for a few years but as I am want, life just got busier and that elusive one day just kept getting pushed out. Eventually life catches up with you and when you can't make the changes you know are needed your body does it for you.
It came to be that my much awaited leave was spent doing the things I needed to do but not quite what I wanted to do. I became so unwell that the first week was spent on the couch, an adverse reaction to iron infusions made me so sick all I could do was wallow in self pity.I had also again rather smugly, timed the infusions to begin in my holidays expecting a magic cure to my malaise and therefore allow me super powers to do all my planned tasks. Best laid plans indeed.
For two weeks I did nothing, zip, zilch , diddly squat. But a strange thing happened. I was quiet, I was still. I had time to daydream and think , sleep and heal. My body chose quiet and I remembered how wonderful that is . It may not have been what I planned but it was what I needed.
The trouble with self imposed busyness is that we forget to just be.We become so important to ourselves and so driven to achieve "stuff" that we push through what our bodies and minds are telling us , waiting for that moment "when life is quiet" instead of finding our own quiet.
The chores are still there waiting to be done, the garden is overgrown, the garage is still full of 'gonna" projects , the manuscript still needs a serious edit and the writing / retreat/ holiday fund is seriously depleted with medical expenses . In saying that I have been writing daily in my journal, new ideas , new thoughts, my health is slowly on the improve, I have taken time to appreciate a few things I have neglected and I have made new plans, the best laid plans !
Winter is coming, my kind of season, crunchy bread dipped in hot stews, snuggly clothing wrapt tight around my body, warmth of an open fire and solitude, the season when life gets quiet.
May you find your quiet space