24 July 2014
Finding The Great Successes In A Mundane Day
Yesterday I just couldn't shake the words "mundane" and "menial" from my head. Those are the feelings I had. The day felt mundane and menial. Besides a few phenomenally great hugs from family and a great hour of Skype with the wonderful friend from the North, I just didn't get a lot of satisfaction out of the day. I felt blah mentally and physically. I was sweaty, dirty and dusty all day and didn't feel like I really did anything that had any real meaning or joy involved in it for the day.
My tasks for the day felt blah too. Cleaning the kitchen for the kajillionth time, folding laundry, cleaning the balcony (dirty, dusty, buggy work) and tidying up our outdoor garden, making dinner, making beds, brushing hair, driving the kiddo to afternoon lessons and more.
While I was cleaning the sink after doing the dishes I had a nutball conversation with myself about if I were dying that I might give anything to just have one more chance to clean the kitchen. I nixed that pretty quickly out of a sense of guilt for people who really are dying and that in all reality cleaning the kitchen wouldn't be on that list anyway. (Please tell me I'm not the only one who has these ridiculous conversations with myself.)
As I got ready to wrap up the day I started thinking about what I'd really done during the day. Not mundane or menial at all when rephrased. Yesterday I took care of the most precious little girl in the whole world to me. I got to help her with her hair, make sure she had good meals and snacks and stayed hydrated on a hot day. We worked very hard for a very long time to have this opportunity - must never forget that!
I helped her develop a talent by delivering her to her lessons with a hat, bottle of cold water and fees she needed along with clear instructions about what to do with all that money, the conversation she needed to have with the course manager about her lost club and to keep drinking cold water. At the end of that I made sure she had a container of fresh strawberries and some goldfish crackers waiting for her when she came in off the course. I knew she would be famished.
I taught her the value and joy of hard work in the sunshine by working side-by-side with her on our balcony and in our little garden space. She got to re-pot a plant, shovel lots of dirt, kill many spiders, sort shells, shake rugs, smash bottles for recycling, stack dusty boxes, sweep and put her full effort towards real work. She enjoyed herself and we talked about how much satisfaction there is in hard work and working together with others.
I had also decided that it was high time she learn to make her favorite meal - spaghetti. So tonight we cooked together and I reviewed all the steps I take to make her most favorite spaghetti sauce in the whole wide world. She's a natural. For a long while now she's been helping me taste test the sauce and determine what seasoning it still needed. She's very good at that. Then she learned to make pasta. Then we had a lovely dinner.
We watched a show together, talked and when it came time for bedtime we spent quite a lot of time together snuggling and talking again. She didn't want to go to bed, said she couldn't do it - that she missed Daddy and me too much to be away from us for the whole night. This from our kiddo who has been the most amazingly easy child to get in bed since she was tiny. She's the kid you put to bed who stays in bed and falls asleep within 3 minutes 99.9% of the time. I told her she could do it and that I had complete confidence in her. She nodded her head and closed her eyes and drifted off feeling peaceful and safe.
Beyond all this I took care of some bills, got hot and sweaty working away on this first day of the next heatwave, remembered to take my vitamins, got all the recycling bottles ready to take to the recylers, tossed four big planters & several little ones that were falling to bits, and down-scaled the patio garden to just four pots and cleaned the kitchen twice and spent an hour resting and meditating. Self-care IS supposed to be my top priority this year.
Looking at things from a different perspective it wasn't a mundane and menial day at all. It was a very successful day. I just needed to look up and see the light and smell the flowers all around me. I have accomplishments to be proud of and lots to be grateful for. Changing my perspective taught me that although my day may have seemed mundane there were many little things to appreciate and celebrate instead.