Andy and I have hit a new level of adulting – busy with kids’ activities level. Last year felt comfortably busy – nothing too stressful or demanding. This year? We leveled up. Unavoidably. This is a first for the level of busy-ness for our family, though I know others experience this a lot more than us.
When Andy and I play StarCraft (computer game) with our friend Fr. Darryl, the game checks our ability to play and based on how many wins we have, it levels us up against a harder challenge in the next game. The bonus of this is that we gain new skills when we play a harder opponent. Then, when we fail the game a couple of times, it levels us down again. It is a constant dance between playing (usually) too hard of an opponent and playing comfortably knowing that we’ll win when we’re at a lower level.
In real life, we don’t have to fail, necessarily, to level down. We can make a conscious choice to do so before it escalates to (completely) failing. However, the benefit to upping a level is that we can grow immensely from the experience, even though it might not look perfect. And there are seasons where upping the level might be unavoidable as well.
This season is one of them – it is unavoidable. I started a children’s program that is two hours long, twice a week, Cassia started soccer and swim lessons, Spencer has Beavers and started Confirmation and First Communion preparation (a hybrid of sorts between two parishes), and Andy has his crazy schedule like always. Oh, and we are starting karate for Spencer twice a week next week. In and amidst all this is homeschool as well, which I’ve also started with Cassia this year. Though her little sister lost one of her workbooks a week ago and I haven’t yet found it.
There is a thrill to it – exciting endeavors and experimenting, opportunities for growth and lots of fun. But it is also tiring. Quite tiring. And we haven’t yet figured out how to recoup completely at this level of activity. This is where adulting gets a bad reputation. It’s hard to blame people. Though I’d still take this adulting over elementary or high school again.
And here’s hoping that it’s a season. Here’s hoping that we figure something out that makes it feel more rhythm than chaos. I’m not always sure that it will turn into rhythm, and if it doesn’t then we’ll have to take a good look at everything and see what might need adjusting so that we can achieve that normalcy we crave.
Everyone is busy. Few have the time to call or get together outside of regularly scheduled family activities. Busy is also lonesome business. Busy also means that the majority of my time is spent around my children and other too-busy moms. No one has it together, but no one wants to share the journey either. Too much to do. Too much to stress about. I don’t want to share your stressful journey either, thank-you-very-much. It is all too understandable. I understand. And I understand the lonely bit too.
Adulting – leveling up. It’s hard, it’s tiring, and at the same time I am looking forward to our adventures: who knows what great things may happen? Who knows what fun we might have or new things we might learn? The lower level offers comfort and less stress; familiarity. It is definitely an inviting offer to level down, but I’m not there yet. I just wish it wasn’t so lonesome and easier to share the journey with others, and I’d be honoured to share in their journey too.
I am unsure what this phase of our life will bring, but we will keep trucking. It’s vulnerable and uncomfortable often, but it’s where we are being called currently. Called to be vulnerable. I am called to be exposed to the elements a little. It’s not always pretty, but it is what it is, and there’s beauty in that. And beyond any of it, God is with us. Especially in our vulnerability.