She: I’m fed up! There’s no balance in my life! Everything seems to be spinning out of control. It is making me edgy and peeved; I don’t like me like that! The more I am trying to create balance, the more things are falling apart. I don’t know what to do!
He: What happened? You sound really upset!
She: I AM upset! This new project is sucking up all my time. I have no time or energy left to do anything else! There are a thousand other things I ought to be doing but I can’t! It’s been weeks since I finished reading a book. I’m still stuck onto the the one I began three weeks ago. I never take so long to finish a book! I haven’t entered the kitchen for days! I don’t even remember if I’ve eaten or not! I used to love playing badminton with the neighbor’s kids… I haven’t done that in I don’t know how many weeks! It has been over a month since I wrote a word. How can I finish a book at this rate? All I do is sit with my head buried in this idiotic project!
I want to caution you against the idea that balance has to be a routine that looks the same week in and week out.
~ Kevin Thoman
He: So get your head out of it.
She: Stop being so aggravating! You KNOW I can’t do that! I can’t budge until it is all done and over with. You know I am a compulsive ‘finisher‘ for a reason.
He: I do… but do you?
He: I know you love this project. When it is done, you’ll be immensely proud of it… wont you ?
She: This is why I can’t talk to you! You hit me with tangents!
He: Wont you?
She: Yes, dammit! I would!
He: Hold onto that thought while I remind you of something.
She: Remind me of what?!
He: Do you remember the year before last? You did NOTHING but write. You wrote like a maniac. That’s how you finished your first book…. remember?
She: Of course I remember!
He: Would you say your life was balanced then? I don’t think you were getting a lot of badminton or cooking done those days. And the only reading you did was your own pet darlings, the glowing phrases you polished painstakingly- phrases you killed ruthlessly later. Am I wrong?
She: No. You aren’t wrong. But what’s your point?
He: My point is this: Your life has always been one of extremes. When you get into one thing… the other things stop to exist. You aren’t a balanced kind in the short term; you’re an extreme type.
She: What do you mean ‘in the short term‘?
He: Ah! Now that’s the point. You see, if you evaluate your life for balance on a daily basis, you are likely to be disappointed. In 24hour spurts, your life is gloriously unbalanced. Even a weekly scale is likely to leave you unhappy. But if you could just take a larger scale… lets say three years… why you have all the balance you need!
In a three year period you’ve cooked like a maniac for months; read indolently for weeks on end; written like a maniac for almost a year; played silly childhood games like a spoiled rich heiress who has nothing better to do; become a demon in your demanding professional domain as if the world were coming to an end tomorrow… on and ON! It is dizzying to watch you! Why do you want MORE balance?!
Your hand opens and closes, opens and closes. If it were always a fist or always stretched open, you would be paralysed. Your deepest presence is in every small contracting and expanding, the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated as birds’ wings.
She: Ohhh! I never thought of it that way!
He: I know. That’s why you need me around.
She: I love you dad!
He: I love you too princess!
Note: Dedicated to all those who nurture, hearten and inspire. Happy Mother’s Day to you!