Balance is an ever-shifting ideal. I have a dear friend who once expressed his exasperation at everyone telling him to work on balance. It seemed an impossible thing to always be in balance. In exploring this idea of balance we decided that balance is different every day and even hour to hour, moment to moment. Certain situations require us to give much of ourselves, while others allow us to receive a great deal. Rarely do they ever seem evenly balanced like weights on a scale.
As we move from the school year to summer finding the balance between work and play is its own challenge. I wrote a blog in April for Mile High Mamas about Being vs. Doing. I believe our kids should have carefree summer days to wonder and explore...a being sort of summer. Sometimes, however, my kids have a different idea.
Walkingstick is ten this year. He loves the structure and predictability of school and often struggles to ease into the free flow of summer. He solved this dilemma this summer by landing a part in a summer children's theatre production that requires rehearsals six mornings a week. It gives him busy mornings, plenty of time to play in the afternoons, and then more structure two nights a week with baseball practice and games.
Gigglebox is on the other end of the spectrum. He wants to be home with mom or dad and doesn't want any activities except baseball, which of course we are at with him. It's been a month now and he seems perfectly content with this arrangement.
Then there is me. I am writing, teaching yoga classes, and being a stay at home mom this summer. Trying to squeeze in time to write and play with the boys has been more challenging than I expected. At times I get focused and want to blaze through the writing and other times I just pack up the boys and we head for the pool or some other adventure.
Dad seems happy to be at work most days, he's a structure guy like walkingstick. He is joining in the fun by coaching the boys' baseball teams and taking a few days off here and there to play.
I believe we are all finding our own balance this summer. Somedays more than others, but then that's the point isn't it...staying grounded amidst the chaos and the calm, the light breeze and the blustery day, finding the balance within ourselves regardless of what is going on around us. Not altogether easy, but a worthy goal nonetheless.
ps - if you'd like to see walkingstick live in Alice's Adventures in Wonderland it starts July 13 at The Aurora Fox Theater