burn your list

I just got home from spending the last 3 days in the hospital with my 4 year old girl.  She is still there though, my husband just came to trade me out.  She is fighting the same respiratory infection she fought last October and needs to be on oxygen, which is why we can't leave the hospital quite yet. 

When we made the call to take her to the ER, we knew we were in for a stay.  I packed an overnight bag for both of us, my husband called in to work and I canceled the lunch plans I had been looking forward to for more than a month.  To say we  were feeling disappointed and frustrated by this change in plans would be an understatement.  There was just so much on our schedules to do!!!

I took my daughter to the ER on Sunday night and as we suspected we were admitted to the children's hospital.  That night I lay in the hospital bed, my sweet baby snuggled next to me in a tangle of oxygen tubes and plus ox monitor wires, the blue light from her monitors making the room uncomfortably bright, and I thought about ALL THE THINGS that were being neglected at home.  Clean laundry was still in baskets waiting to be put away, the grocery list that was supposed to be shopped the next morning, this post waiting to be written, and facebook party for Beautiful & Beloved, TAXES, the list just seemed to go on and on and on.  Then I heard, from a room nearby, the terrified shrills and screams of a child in pain.  The kind of cries that make a mothers heart stop beating and a lump form in your throat.  My daughter snuggled deeper into my side only barely aware of what disturbed her sleep. 


Just like that, the list in my head caught on fire.  I imagined myself celebrating next to the big flames, free from the burden of doing it all, free to just be with my daughter who needed me most of all.  I was suddenly filled with gratitude that our hospital visit was so benign, what if...

When we woke up the next morning, I tucked my phone away and dusted off the ashes of my former "to do" list.  I dedicated myself 100% to my little girl, whatever she wanted, we did.  play-dough and coloring, painting and puzzles, movies and stories.  It was beyond delightful, and restful, and rejuvenating for us both.

All the things on my list still need to be done, but they are just things.  Somehow while I was away my boys were fed and clothed, the house did not in fact implode, and my business is still around.  Here is the lesson...

Being with my people refreshes my soul in a way that checking items off my "to do" list NEVER will.

Taking a time out to rest and enjoy my family did not add to my stress it took my stress and turned it into joy.  After all, who am I doing all this work for?  Myself?? My kids would much rather we build leggos together, than have their laundry put away in a timely fashion. 

What are you letting steal your rest, what do you need to refresh your soul?


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