Thursday, April 23, 2009

Time and Discipline

It was hard to restrain laughter when I read a comment someone anonymously left on my blog post about my hot cross bun project, stating that I must have extra time on my hands.

One of the reasons I was amused by this comment is that I’m currently reading a book called Shopping for Time: How to Do It All and Not Be Overwhelmed. This, by the way, is a very excellent book.

I’m the type of person who likes to extract all of the good things that life has to offer. I want to take advantage of the opportunities available in every season of life. I like to make holidays special. I also need space and time to reflect.

The current phase of life I’m in is a really busy one. My young children depend on me for everything (some days I just want to scream, “Meredith, could you please learn to wipe your own bottom!”). My husband works a lot of hours. When I go to bed I’m exhausted. Like all other moms of young children I have very little time for myself.

Unfortunately I was becoming a frustrated mom. I don’t want to be a frustrated mom. I want to be a happy mom, with space in my life to enjoy the precious time I have with my children.

Rather being depressed and pining away for more hours in my day, I recently (March 1) decided to take matters into my own hands and make an extra hour in my day. In other words, instead of getting 7.5 hours of sleep on average, I now get 6.5 hours of sleep on average.

Getting up an extra hour early has been really painful for me. I hate it for about 20 minutes. But then after I’m finally awake and have sat still and read my bible, started writing out my to-do list, taken a shower, made the kids’ breakfast, and maybe even gotten in 15 minutes of yoga, I realize that if I hadn’t gotten up early, I’d just then be waking up with nothing accomplished, feeling like I was playing catch-up all day long.

We all ultimately do what we really want to do. We all have the same 24 hours in a day to work with.

Recently I’ve decided to do what I don’t like to do (get up early), to do what I ultimately want more (be a happy mom).


Rose said...

I admire your discipline - I always feel so much better with myself and with the days when I am on a get-up-early kick. (Such kicks are incompatible with pregnancy, I've decided.) Good for you for taking a positive approach to this potentially stressful time of life!

Stephen, Sarah, Nora and Joseph said...

Way to go, Amy! As you know, I "enjoyed" a period of waking up early the first couple months of the year and it helped SO MUCH! Hope you're able to keep it up and reap the benefits.

Monica said...

I read that book at the beginning of the year and had completely forgotten about it until now. Perhaps I should revisit it and bless my family with a less grumpy mom:)

Sharon said...

Thank you for this post. I am also trying to get up earlier to be a happy mom (I am NOT a morning person). The days are much happier and productive for all of us when I do. Your post was definitely an encouragement to me.

Missi said...

good post, I should check out that book too! Waking early does make a big difference...or at least earlier then your/my child(ren).
I love reading your blog! Especially when you post about the fun things you get to do as a making hot cross buns with your family:)

the Joneses said...

My solution would be different, of course. Since I need a lot of sleep and love even more, I'd just decide that I needed to get less done in the day. :) I love reading about how you live life. It's at a higher intensity than mine and usually leaves me feeling a little breathless. Probably I just need a nap. :)

-- SJ