Thursday, June 3, 2010

I called one of my long time friends who lives in another state just to check up on her. We try to catch up at least three times a year by phone and what we do mostly is laugh. Everyone needs a friend like that. It’s cheaper than therapy.

I filled her in on my last few crazy months then it was her turn. “How’s it going?” I asked.

“Well, we’ve made it through a wedding and a funeral and now I’m trying to assist my mom and mother-in-law with doctor’s appointments and such. I’m also helping my daughter with her kids this summer,” she explained.

“That makes me tired to think about,” I laughed.

“You’ll love this, Suz. The other day I was explaining to my mother-in-law the process of working out a three-way schedule for the summer, she patted me on the arm and said, ‘How nice you have something to occupy our time, honey.’ I almost choked on my Dr. Pepper.”

“Occupy your time?” I said stunned. “Are you kidding? Does she think you are bored? I think the last time I was bored was the summer between fourth and fifth grade. I could use a little boredom, couldn’t you.”

“I don’t remember the last time I woke up and realized I had absolutely nothing I had to do that day. I don’t even know how to be bored. I almost had a panic attack the other day thinking about the whole summer and how I was going to handle it.” She sounded so tired and the summer has just begun.

After we hung up the phone an hour later, I looked up the word bored and this is what Webster’s said: “Feeling weary because one is unoccupied.” I guarantee the majority of us have some of that weary feeling, but it’s not from being unoccupied.

I came across this quote from author E.L. Doctorow: “Writing is like driving a car a night. You never see further than your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.”

I wonder what it would be like to break our busy lives down that way. If we know the final destination, we don’t have to worry about what we’ll pass along the way, or sometimes even which direction we are going. Instead of letting it overwhelm us, we could take it one little bit at a time. All we need is to see three or four hours out in front of us and we can make the whole day, the whole week, or the whole summer that way.

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