I loved reading this post by Ann Kroeker about writing in the midst of motherhood. Neglecting writing is so easy to do when you have many children and few moments of quiet. I am not one who can create easily in the midst of noise and interruption. Quiet space for focus and reflection is where clarity comes and the words and phrases are able to be released from me.
But if I constantly wait for three hours of quiet, then I will never write. Never share my life, my stories, my reflections on faith, motherhood, home and hospitality. Blogging has been sporadic for me over the years because I never seem to find a consistent place in my schedule for it. The suggestion often offered is to simply get up earlier. I have come to accept that I need 9 hours of sleep a night to live well and absolutely won’t skimp on it in order to create. In the evenings my mind is too tired for coherent expression and the daytime hours are loud and full.
Where can I find space for an hour of uninterrupted creativity every day?
In my ideal world, I would have a quiet breakfast with coffee followed by a morning of engaged learning with my children. After lunch, my children would create and play outdoors while I take my two-mile walk. Then they would have solitary quiet times in their bedrooms or on living room couches, and I would write. Then we would all arrive back together after an hour for more learning, games, read-alouds or the pool.
There it is. I found it. An hour in the afternoon.
An hour of daily afternoon quiet time has become a forgotten routine. Years ago I started that afternoon practice, and although difficult for me to begin, with consistency, it became an hour of bliss for all of us. Some boys read books and others listen to stories with headphones. Bodies and souls were calmed and the silence healed the agitations and frustrations of the day. It’s as if all was forgiven when we experienced an hour of stillness.
Somehow I have let this healthy practice fall away this year, and now I need the fortitude to face the initial whines and complaints that will ensue when I reinstate this rhythm. It’s never easy to begin new habits and resistance should be expected. But the beauty and calm that comes from a well-ordered day cannot be underestimated for its offering of health, peace, productivity, creativity, and a deep soul satisfaction.
That hour is so vital in order for the soul to be watered and fed and expressed. Sacred Time for reading, creating, journaling, prayer –being alone with our own thoughts, generating ideas, processing our lives, getting in tune with our hearts– is a gift to ourselves and to others that should not be devalued or minimized.
May we all make space for uninterrupted time for our hearts, souls and bodies to flourish in healthy, creative ways.