And so, I write. Here is what I am thinking about.
About how on Saturday a small miracle occurred.
I actually put on REAL clothes (jeans! a cute sweater! makeup!) and drove to the closest mall. (AN HOUR AWAY! No, seriously, how is it that I live an hour from a mall? And thirty minutes from a TARGET??)
The purpose? To shop. For myself. With gift cards.
I don't think I have done something like this in....years?
And, on the drive down, in the golden silence, I did a lot of thinking. And what I thought about, among other things, was silence, how I missed silence, how mommyhood was a lot of anti-silence, (AKA, noise, albeit happy noise a lot of the time, still NOISE) and how even in the silent moments, I manage to fill it up with anti-silence.
Have you ever noticed this?
Mostly its the blasted smart phone. That blessing/curse for the modern mama.
First, its facebook, which I have actually gotten better about checking (every three minutes) to a more reasonable (every ten minutes.) Then its reading CNN or Buzzfeed. And then a celebrity gossip site. I don't really do the games, I am just not a game person. But this alone is enough to consume my free moments of the day.
And its enough to eat into my "thinking" time.
So, all that to say. Driving in the car. No facebook. No smart phone access. I didn't even turn on the radio. Just silence.
At first it was eerie.
Then the pent up thoughts started coming.
Nothing productive like, plotting out the next pivotal scene of my book or what to make for dinner next week.
No, my brain was like a flurry of un-related randomness that nearly drowned me as I drove along in the sunshine.
At first the every present back-of-the-mind to do list consumed me.
"We HAVE to get the kids to the dentist."
"I wonder who is the best dentist around."
"I seriously hate the dentist."
"Why do I hate the dentist so much?"
"I really should use these gift certificates to buy the kids some new play pants."
"Crap, I forgot to send that email to Bekah."
"I should tell Steve to defrost something for dinner."
Then the random started coming.
"Why did we stop eating quinoa?"
"I cant wait until we can buy garden seeds."
"Good grief its cold."
"I really should've gotten those transition lenses for my glasses."
"I feel like I suck at homeschooling lately. Seriously. I am shitty."
"I hope I can find something to buy at Jcrew."
"I am REALLY not into Jcrew lately. How weird is that?"
"Remember when we used to walk the mall for fun Sara?"
"I should've called someone to go to lunch."
"That guy just cut me off. People are stupid."
"Nah, I don't think I could have a conversation today."
"Since when did I get so boring?"
And it took me the whole drive there just to settle my mind. Now, granted, big things have been afoot in the June household. "What is next-ing" about everything. And baby has slept for crap this week. Waking up every SINGLE night. For an hour. Or more. Because her skin is "scratchy" darn polar vortex eczema.
And I realize, as I quietly walk around the stores, browsing, touching the soft beautiful fabrics, shrugging off salespeople help, that I need more silence in my life. True silence. Not the exhausted end of the day silence on the couch, but silence that allows one space to really think.
And this is hard for mommies, to give this to ourselves.
But we must.
And then we come home, and we bust right back into "mama mode" of hugs and dishes and dinner prep and "eat your food" and run the bath and pajamas and big sigh, couch, Netflix, bed.
We cant forget us, that is, who we are, and to make sure we don't we need space to let that us emerge, all wide-eyed and confused, a dizzying rush of thoughts, and there, in the sunlight, blinking, alive, unique, valued, whole.