“Idleness may be a privilege, but that doesn’t mean that some degree of idleness shouldn’t also be a right—to insist otherwise is to insist, perversely, that women have the right to work without the right to leisure.”
Taking a break in your workday feels like an indulgence, right?
I am casting my vote for idleness today.
When I notice my jaw is tight and I scoot around my people with the terse efficiency of a waitress at a diner at lunchtime, I think my work hours are more important than, say, a set of full deep breaths out in the sunshine. This is when I have to stop and take a break. I discovered this at the laundry line almost 10 years ago. In order to toggle between active mothering and doing a little bit of creative work away from child-raising, I found comfort lingering over the laundry outside. That little bit of idleness out at the line became salve for my frantic urgency about everything and anything. Sure, hanging wash on a line takes effort, but it slows me down.
All that has developed in to my work did not happen, not my book, this blog, teaching and presenting, plus mothering, because I wore my nose away on the grindstone of high expectations and unrelenting effort. Out at my laundry line, I discovered the blessing of stepping away from the fray. I let fresh air ease my daily burden. So many of the women I spend time with, my friends and colleagues, all suffer from this sense of never getting to the bottom of the to-do list.
Rather than being over worked or staking unrealistic expectations for ourselves, I wonder if we are “under idle?”
Today’s Care For Your Creative takes you to the river.