Slowing Down: Growing and Learning at Home

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kneading doughI have a confession to make. I am a chronic over-the-top on-the-go person. I fill our calendar with play dates, Bible studies, day trips and adventures. If there’s a hiking trail nearby, I’m taking my family to it right now! Small town festival going on this weekend? We’re there!

We live our life on-the-go.

2 months ago, our on-the-go lifestyle came to a screeching halt. My calendar was completely wiped clean. Every girl’s night, family gathering, birthday party, and church event was cancelled.

Slowing down really forced me to look within more than usual. Through this process, there are several things I’ve learned about myself:

  1. Slowing down has helped me to notice and enjoy the little things. Watching my perennials start to break through the ground has been a highlight. I’ve never noticed and/or enjoyed this before. Spring, especially when I was still teaching, was a stressful time of year. There really has never been time for me to see these little changes in my own yard. I’ve found myself running outside each morning to check on my plants. I’ve documented their daily growth, and I’ve cherished these small little gains.
  2. I’ve been able to do things I truly love doing but never have the time! I have a passion for bread baking. I added it to my contributor description when I first started writing for Rochester Mom because it was that much of a passion for me. BUT I just have not had the time to work that into my life these past 7 years of parenting…So, with this extra time at home, I’ve been able to resurrect that passion! I’ve been able to share my bread with family and friends. We discovered our neighbor has a HUGE love of sourdough bread, so when he came home from the hospital after surgery this past week, I was able to drop a fresh loaf off on his doorstep. I’m sorry to say, but 5 months ago, I would’ve been too busy to even know he was having surgery. Now, I know AND am able to pass on a little love to him.
  3. I have seen first hand how my son’s teachers are truly phenomenal. Charlie’s teacher has been so purposeful in continuing the strong relationships he built with the kids throughout the year. He sends my son jokes which is a love language for my little guy. Whenever he has a one-on-one meeting, he asks such wonderful questions to get Charlie talking. His music teacher sent a personalized post card, and his gym teacher sent emails checking in as well! I knew they were great, but seeing it from this perspective has been so heartwarming.
  4. I’ve realized that even though I love filling up my calendar, it is going to be very important for me to put downtime into our calendar when things start up again. We have grown as a family. My kids have spent so much time imagining and creating play together. This needs to continue for us. We’ve definitely had our moments when I wish I could throw the kids in the van and head to the park to play on the playground, but all in all, the kids have learned to create their own fun in and around our home.
  5. I’m so incredibly thankful for the things I have. This time has shown me that even though the world has gone into lock down, I have food. I have a home. I have a loving and protective husband and family. This is not the case for so many people in our world. I will work to not take this for granted.

I realize and understand, my situation may look very different from others right now. But there is one definite commonality: no matter what our situation, we can always learn something new.

What are you learning about yourself during this time?