March 8, 2005

Living in the Stream of Consciousness (Or All I Want is a Cup of Tea)

Have you ever read "The Jilting of Granny Weatherall" by Katherine Anne Porter? If you have you'll know what I mean by stream-of-consciousness. Sometimes I get so lost in the stream that I lose track of what I was doing. This happens most often when there are many demands being made upon my time and I haven't taken the time to prioritize, so I'm simply reacting to each thing as it comes up. Often the simplest task would never be completed at the end of the day, though lots of other things would get done.

I like to start my day with a cup of tea. Vanilla Almond, or Murchie's Library Square are great breakfast teas, but often the simplest thing, like having a cup of tea would not quite get finished because of "life" happening. My day would go something like this...

Get up and read my Bible and journal. Head downstairs to meet Mikaela to go feed and doctor the horses. Walk past the stove. Stop. Put the kettle on for tea. See Mikaela putting on her boots and remember the horses. Put on my coat and boots. Take care of the horses. Come inside and hang up my coat and put away my boots. Hear the Kettle. Find a teapot and put tea in it. Add hot water from the kettle and set the timer. Help little boys get dressed. Hear the timer going off and go pour off the tea. Start breakfast. See teapot on counter and pour a cup for Tami and I. Take Tami her cup. Play with baby laying on bed. Pet the dogs. Wash hands. Pick up towels on the floor of the bathroom take to laundry room. Sort laundry. Start a load in the washer. Take clothes out of the dryer and take them to the dining room to fold and sort. Clean off the table. Take books to the living room to put away. Pick up books on the floor and put them away as well. Go back through the kitchen, see my cup of tea. Take a sip. Find children to help fold clothes and put them away. Sit down to breakfast. Remember my tea on the counter. Go and get it. Eat. Clean up the kitchen. Answer questions about school. Wash the dining table down. See the empty laundry basket and take it to the laundry room. Notice that the wash is finished. Switch out the loads. Start another load. Take the now full basket back to the dining room to fold. See my teacup. The tea is cold so take it to the microwave to heat it up. Fold clothes and sort. Put towels away. Answer school questions. Cut fruit for mid morning snack. Work on laundry more. See microwave and remember tea. Its cold again. reheat it again. Make sure beds are made. Start lunch. Serve lunch. Find teacup of cold tea in microwave. reheat. Take a sip. Put boys down for nap. Work on general tidying and making sure chores are done. Check school work is finished. Send kids outside to play. Make afternoon snack. See teacup. Cold. reheat. Take kids to soccer practice or stay home and make dinner. Eat. Clean up kitchen. Get kids ready for bed. Read books. Put kids to bed. Clean up odds and ends. Get ready for bed go downstairs for a drink of water. See teacup. Cold. Pour it out its not any good anymore.

This tendency to get sidetracked is also responsible for my putting my jeans in the fridge and not remembering them until I got to work (I was suppose to change into them after work so I didn't have to go home before meeting a friend). Which is a little unusual, since I have learned to trust my instincts more, and have begun to realize when I've done something that scatterbrained and remedy the situation promptly.

However, the lesson God has taught and is teaching me through all my scatterbrained and distracted moments, is that I can't simply go through life reacting to what is happening. I need to keep a perspective that is outside of the circumstances. One that allows me to be Pro-active rather then Re-active. One that keeps my emotions from running away with my thoughts, but rather keeps my mind always on the finish line. I find that sometimes as I recognize my tendency to react, I over-compensate and become a little too proactive, which probably scares the recipients a little, but God is teaching me that too. What amazing things there are to be learned if we'll only keep our eyes open.

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