Give Yourself a Break

I love this picture of Jack, Michael and me snapped just after my nephew Fionn's baptism last Sunday, and the thumbnail of Michael holding Fionn, his godson. It really sends home the message that the days we all work through may be long and tedious, but when those days are all mushed together, a single year goes by so incredibly quickly. Tonight is Michael's baccalaureate mass at St. Paul Cathedral with graduation at Soldiers & Sailors this Sunday... and then... bam! Just like that. This chapter of his life will have ended. That my brother and sister in law chose Michael to be their younger boy's godfather reminds me that my oldest son is an adult now, and I had to laugh when Mike asked me for a copy of the photo him holding Fionn to put in his dorm room. Thinking that the handsome young man down the hall has a son will probably be co-ed kryptonite. (But, come to think of it, within the next 10 years, there's a good chance Michael will have started a family of his own...)
I always intend to sit down and share stories with you here, but life has a strange way of interrupting my plans. Jack gets his driver's license on June 6, his 16 1/2 year old birthday, so I've been having him chauffeur me all over the universe to get his requisite 65 hours of parental instruction. Something as simple as going to the store must be planned out carefully now, just so we can chip away in 20 minute increments at his obligation. Ryan is changing schools so he's been home since late March being cyber schooled. Having him around has been a lovely opportunity for the two of us to hang out together uninterrupted, but it does a whopper of a job on any kind of productive activity I have planned. (And let me tell you, when you're writing a book, and you realize that the book you're writing as actually two books, it quickly feels like your face is starting to melt off.)
I realize now, as I'm rushing to help Michael put the finishing touches on his college preparations (he's gone all summer at a job in Ohio) that sometimes we just need to give ourselves a break. I was doing a radio interview the other morning and the host asked me about the planned release date of my book. I almost felt guilty when I said, "It'll be ready when it's ready." But it's true. The stuff of life, of raising responsible, respectful young men, will always take precedence over my extra-curricular fantasies of being an author whose books people are excited to read. Right now, I need to be a mom. And let me tell you, it's the greatest job I've ever had.
So, if you're feeling stressed out by the amount of work on your plate, and you feel as though you're just not doing anything particularly well, relax and give yourself a break. You're where you are for a reason. Today will pan out the way it's supposed to. Sometimes slowing down and enjoying the view is the best order of business. Because if you blink, it'll likely be gone.
So grab your phone or your camera and start shooting! Today's rushing around will become tomorrow's memories. And if yours are anything like mine, they'll grow up far too tall and become way too handsome when you're too busy not looking.
Peace, everyone. 

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