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Posts Tagged ‘quiet’

‎The place is so quiet that I can hear the clock ticking. The clock has been in the wall the whole time we’ve been here but with four kids running around it’s usually much too chaotic and loud to hear the tiny sound of a ticking clock.

But the kids are out for now, up at the pool with the dads and so the house is quiet and I can hear the clock ticking. I went to the pool yesterday and the day before but today is overcast and cool and I barely get into a bathing suit when the weather is scorching, let alone when the sun is hiding and my body is covered in goose bumps.

My friend is asleep on the couch. She will wake up in a few minutes and claim she was not sleeping and, in fact, was only resting her eyes but I know the truth. ‎Her kids are younger than mine and so she is still in the stage when days start early and nights are never uninterrupted. She deserves to grab sleep, any sleep, wherever she can find it. I, on the other hand, feel somewhat guily napping when I had a full nights’ sleep last night (and the night before and the night before). I know she looks at me and wonders of she will ever get here, to the other side, where I now am. I remember being her and hating people who told me this phase will end, so I say nothing and just sneak quietly from the room so she can rest her eyes for a bit longer.

‎I should probably fold something or pack something or tidy something but I tell myself I’m on vacation so I don’t have to. Chores still exist on holidays, especially those with children, but I take the position that they become optional rather than mandatory. Whatever gets me through the day. We go home tomorrow so soon enough there will no longer be an option.

I sit here and look out the window, expecting to see the rag-tag bunch trudging down the hill from the swimming pool. They will be cold and tired, although they will admit neither. The quiet will be broken and there will be showers to run and soaking wet bathing suits to wring out and stories to listen to about who dove in and who swam the fastest and who stole the beach ball and wouldn’t give it back.

I will feel both happy and sad to see them. Happy for all of the reasons I’m supposed to but also sad because quiet time is done, and perhaps I’ve wasted it. Time alone is so precious that I feel I should have accomplished something amazing, although what that would look like I’m not sure. Instead they will return and all I will have done is pinned a new muffing recipe on Pinterest and written this post. Amazing? I fear I will once again have fallen short.

I look out the window again, and again no sign of them. It’s almost as though I don’t know what to do when I’m sitting here without them, without a constant list of things to do. Apparently I’ve lost the ability to be left to my own devices. When my kids are present I don’t know what to do with them, and yet when they are gone I don’t know what I’m supposed to do without them.

But soon enough they will be home and it will again be loud and chaotic and all of those other things that kids bring along with them wherever they go. And I will love them for it (at least a little bit) and I will fondly remember my time alone, when it was quiet enough to hear the sound of the clock ticking.

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‎I’m sitting alone in my car, parked in a parking lot outside an arena. It is a cloudy, windy, dreary day and I watch the bare tree branches blowing this way and that.

Hubby is inside the arena, doing all that stuff that takes place inside arenas. The kids are elsewhere, safe and sound and out of my jurisdiction for the time being.

I am drinking a still-hot cup of tea and reading a magazine, uninterrupted.

It really doesn’t take much to make me happy.

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‎My kids are safe, and for at least the next half an hour, not my responsibility at all.

There is no where else I’m supposed to be. No errands, no meetings, nothing on my calendar except this.

There is nothing else I’m supposed to be doing. No chores, no Christmas things, no wrapping, no list making.

So I will just be.

I will just sit here on this bench and drink my tea all the way to the bottom while it’s still hot enough to burn my tongue.

In a little while there will be kids to watch and places to go and things to do. But that’s for later.

Not now. All I have to do right now is be.

Just be.

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outside

‎The room is loud, a dozen voices competing to be heard but mine is not one of them.

Everyone is chatting, laughing, and I sit quietly.

I could try. I could say something and someone would smile and answer back and then there would be that awkward silence when we both decide we don’t really want to keep talking.

I will think of an excuse to leave, to go anywhere but this room.

Because I already feel like I’m on the outside, so now I will go there instead.

Maybe there I will feel like I belong, even if it’s only with myself.

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‎The dishwasher hums.

The clothes are folded, still warm from the dryer, and I tuck the basket under my arm to carry up the stairs.

The lunches are packed, the backpacks sit by the door, the shoes are lined up on the mat.

The order forms for school pictures have been completed; boxes filled, cheques written, envelopes sealed.

The fish have been fed.

The door is locked.

The weight of the day has settled on my shoulders.

I make my way up the stairs and tiptoe into first one room and then the other.

The hair is brushed out of her eyes and a kiss placed softly on her cheek.

The radio is turned off, the blanket placed close enough for him to find it when he reaches out for it through the night, as I know he will.

I tiptoe back out, blowing each one last kiss.

The teeth are brushed, the face is washed, the lines around my eyes are examined.

The clothes are ironed and hung on the back of the door, waiting for tomorrow.

The feet are slipped under the blankets.

The alarm is set.

The glasses are put on the table where I can reach for them in the morning.

The head rests on the pillow.

A sigh escapes my lips as my hand reaches out and finds its home, wrapped in the warmth of another.

The day is done.

It will start all over again tomorrow but for right now, let’s turn out the lights and enjoy the stillness, whispering in the dark.

Good night.

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