What we Want and What We Need has Been Confused

That title is a quote from Michael Stipe of the band REM in the song, Finest Worksong. Got two days off (post weekend) and I was thrilled about it.  I figured, here’s an eternity of time to get everything I need to get done, done!  Well, after the first day it hasn’t quite worked out that way.

A reminder that life is longer than we think sometimes.

I’ve done a lot today but a few things I did were really important and restorative.  Let me take you through them in hopes you find parallels for your next short time off:

Got up about 6am with the crying baby and the edgy 3 year old.  Took care of their needs.  Bottle, changed diapers, feed the older one, put their channel on.  The girls really wore me out this morning.  In searching for my “center” I found myself very distracted with their needs.  Not complaining mind you, just explaining that we can’t always get that time we have “off.”  I thought, maybe it is better to spend time with my girls that it is to space out in front of the computer all day.  So that wasn’t all bad.  Meanwhile, my 10 year old was sleeping in (LUCKY DOG!)

The rest of the day consisted in cleaning and preparing: preparing for lunch, dinner and cleaning the kitchen and TV room.  There is so much joy in a clean room.  All this stuff was like therapy for me.  Later on we went out by the pool and I pulled all the strange things out of the skimmer.  I came inside, had some pizza and watched a few shows on Rome.  Typical time at home eh?  I am sure it all was therapeutic, but my head still felt thick.  I knew my therapy needed one more step: relaxation.  I’d cleaned, prepared, read stories, made bottles, and much more but I hadn’t yet been able to JUST RELAX.  Do you ever have trouble just relaxing?  Well if that’s the case, remember to relax before it’s too late.  How did I relax?  I took a hot shower.  It revived my spirits.  When I got dried off I asked my wife to go out for dinner tonight … just us!  We spent all Sunday and Monday in the day with our kids and I figured we both deserved a break.

Point? My relaxing shower was great, but only after I had done the cleaning and preparation of the day.  I think one of the single most powerful tools of inspiration is cleaning.  Having said that, it should always be tempered with relaxation.  So what is your “thing” you can do today to relax your body and awaken your creativity?  Make sure you do that thing in concert with the other stuf “you know you gotta do.”  When you have that breakthrough, let us know!

Author: Damien Riley

I'm an online diarist & blog film critic. I teach public school, 4th grade as my primary occupation. My views on films and life are often 'left of center' on, but I have respect for other viewpoints. I married my high-desert princess (now my queen). We have 3 children.

7 thoughts on “What we Want and What We Need has Been Confused”

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  3. Kudos to you Tracy. I used to run years ago, sometimes 10 mile workouts with the cross-country team. Later in my 20’s I tried to pick it up but it’s never stuck. I’m just trying to stay regular on my treadmill. Anyway, I know about that “runner’s high” you speak of. Thanks so much for reminding us all of how exercise truly can free the mind to be inspired.

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