In the Realm of Busy, I'm Only Very Busy, Which Might Be Good
Poetry is not a regular thing for me. I would describe myself as neutral to poetry. I don't seek out poetry books. But poetry finds me every now and then, either in the pages of The New Yorker or a poetry loving friend will suggest a book.
Last week, I listened to an episode of On Being with Krista Tippett, a podcast I listen to once a week on my walks. Tippett had poet Mary Oliver on and I was so inspired by this woman's poetry. I was also moved by how Oliver described her escape from an unhappy home, by taking long walks in nature with a pencil and notebook in hand.
I thought of my 9 year old son who is exactly the type of kid who would love to take pencil and notebook in hand and spend the entire day in nature with a sandwich in his pocket. Not to escape his home (at least, I hope not) but to have freedom to think, draw and write at his pace and in his own sweet time. Alas, he's a city kid. Cooped up unless accompanied by an adult.
Of course, then, I thought of myself and how I'm exactly the type of person who would like to take pen and paper and go out without a plan or destination and find some quiet place to write in my own sweet time. I am sure if I did this on a consistent basis, say once a month, I would be a happier person. And that is the point of all this, isn't it? To be happy in whatever place we've found ourselves in?
So why don't I just do it? Make a date to do that once a week. Stick to it rain or shine.
Well, it's complicated. I'm busy. Very busy.
An acquaintance recently told me, "I'm at work, it's insane here." I thought, wow, she's "insanely busy." I questioned my own level of busyness. I felt not quite up to par, somehow, as a person who is not insane at all but very busy. I'm raising kids, keeping a home, managing a part-time small business, taking care of basic needs, and writing a book. This amounts to "very busy" and often I am struggling to stay consistent about getting all these things done (well).
I wonder about other people and how they are managing. A recent poll by the American Psychological Association reports 72% of Americans report stress from money and finances. I'm sure this is just part of the insanely busy picture.