An apology, an explanation, a realization

Posted: June 4, 2016 in Parenting, Random Thoughts on Life
Tags: , , , , , ,

There are times that I can be a terrible friend. I can be a bad relative. I’ll even admit to sometimes being a bad husband and father. There are lots of reasons for this. Some of them are character flaws. I am the first person to admit when I have a flaw, and I have a ton of them. One of the biggest reasons for this is because I never feel like I have enough time in the day to dedicate to the people, the career, and the activities that matter to me. I have to put my attention and energy where I feel that it is most needed, and because of this something always gets missed. I apologize to my friends, past and present, if I have given the attention to you that I should. I apologize to my relatives for not visiting as often as I should. I most sincerely apologize to my wife and child for not having the patience or energy that would allow me to be the husband and father that you deserve.

As a society, we have held aloft the ideal that we should work hard and play hard. Work hard in your career and on project and on any kind of labor. Put as much energy as you can into your recreation and pour yourself into the experience. I feel that I’ve been doing that for a while now, and I’m exhausted! One of the reasons why I don’t have as much time and energy for friends and family as I’d like is because I pour so much of myself into my job and into my work and even into my hobbies that I don’t have energy reserves left. I’ve been out of school for a couple of weeks now and this afternoon was the first time that I finally said “I’m going to rest!” I did for a while, mostly to fight off a sinus headache, but I felt guilty the whole time. There is so much to do, and I feel like I should always be doing it! We all pride ourselves on the idea that we must constantly exhaust ourselves to get ahead in life. I am beginning to wonder what it is that we are trying to get ahead of.

Don’t misunderstand me. I cannot stand laziness and apathy. I have to fight against that all the time with groups of people. However, when did we decide that spending some part of the day doing nothing was such a horrible thing? I’m not talking about spending half of the day staring at a wall and contemplating the purpose of your belly button. I’m just saying that we all might find a little bit more energy in our lives and maybe even more appreciation for our work if we can set aside a little time each day to breathe. Not play, not get on the computer, not even talk on the phone. Just to do nothing. One of the wisest things that I’ve heard came from the movie Tron: Legacy. “You’d be surprised at how productive doing nothing can be.”

I’ll never stop working hard. People depend on me and they deserve nothing less. I’m also in awe at those people that can seem to find the balance that allows them to take care of their kids and do their jobs and even provide food for potluck meals (I’m a bit of a joke at my school. I always volunteer to provide the plates, cups, and plastic ware!) I hate that I will probably never be one of those people. But to those friends and family that I have not given the time that I’d like to have given, I’m going to try to take some time to do nothing. Hopefully then, I will have the time and energy to be the friend, father, or husband that you deserve. If you’re reading this, maybe you should consider a little time for nothing as well. I think we all need it.

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