The last days of summer aren’t guaranteed.
I wanted to a do a little writing on this Sunday afternoon of the long weekend. The weather is pretty nice. Rather than grab a laptop and get it all setup, I opted for a simple pen and paper. After all, I’m just going to jot down a few notes outside in the backyard, in the shade of our tree.
I decide to let the dog and the cat out too. Our cat is confined to only our backyard and only when someone is outside with him. He likes to explore the garden and I’m sure in his mind becomes invisible or maybe he is satisfying some primal instinct of being a great hunter.
Anyways, this is the plan.
Procrastination has been on my mind lately and I notice an inner struggle. All the things that need to be done, take time to do and somewhere in all of that is the need to rest.
I’m practicing observing. Observing how I feel when thoughts come up. I’m also practicing detachment. Key word = practicing. This is so I don’t let a thought take me down a rabbit hole and bring along my feelings and emotions with it. Nope, writing will be good to do today, even if I just get a couple of topics or a few lines done. It will be a start and that will feel good.
I set up my chair in the shade of our tree. I notice the waterfall for our little pond in the garden is not running. That can be left for another day because I’m going to write and relax outside in my backyard.
Where’s the cat?
I get up to look in the garden and he is behind the pond. I see all the leaves in the water, which caused the pump to stop working. I see a dead baby bird in the water. My goodness, so sad. I bless it and decide that it can’t wait, the pond must be cleaned right now.
The baby bird didn’t have his eyes opened yet, just little. There are trees around but no nests. I assume it was dropped after a raid. I scoop him up and remove the debris. The water is sucked up with the wet vac. Fresh water is replaced and with a little work, the pump gets the water flowing again.
Where’s the cat?
Ah! Still exploring the backyard. I take the garbage to the alley and go in to wash up. I can’t wait to sit outside and do some writing!
I come back with a glass of water and put it beside my chair in the shade. The dog comes over. He would like some attention. Not now, I’m going to sit in the shade and do some writing. So, I grab his toy, a snack dispensing ball and get a handful of kibbles to put in it. He happily knocks it around the lawn hoping a kibble falls out as a reward for his effort. I don’t like the feel and smell of the kibble on my hand, so I go in yet again to quickly wash up. I’m so looking forward to sitting in my chair, in the shade to do some writing. I open the door and the cat is running my way. He’s ready to come back inside and that is fine by me. I get to now sit in the shade, in my chair and do some writing. It’s going to feel great!
I move my chair, yet again to ensure I will be in the shade for some time as the sun moves throughout this afternoon. I sit down and our old, secondhand lawn chair rips so badly that half of my bottom is right through the canvas. I look up and I laugh! Holding onto my pen and paper so they don’t blow away, I struggle to get out of the broken, reclined chair. I fold it up, put it aside and grabbed the other chair from the matching set. Yes, it did occur to me that the odds may not be in my favor, but I was going to sit in my chair, in the shade and do some writing this afternoon. And I was going to feel great!
The second chair holds! I am finally about to start writing and my husband, now home from work, opens the back door and greets me! I laugh again and he asks what’s going on. I said, “You have to sit here while I tell you what has gone on for the last 45 minutes or so.” We laughed and he goes back inside.
With the dog asleep at my feet, I now have been writing outside while sitting in my chair in the shade and it does feel great!
How does this relate to being a caregiver?
We know that well intentioned plans can sometimes get derailed –whether momentarily or for longer and that is ok.
Sometimes we need to keep trying despite obstacles and other times to just let go. Even though we know it is better to detach from outcomes, it can be hard to keep that objective. We may find ourselves down that rabbit hole without even realizing it, even when it gets silly and all you can do is laugh.
And lastly, taking some downtime just for you is necessary. To replenish your energy, stamina and take care of your needs for a little while. It is easy to look after one more thing, two more things, but before you know it the shade has passed, your butt is stuck in a lawn chair and the dog is wondering what the heck is wrong with you. The last days of summer, in the shade and all you can do is laugh at it all.