When All You Want is All the Things

When All You Want is ALL THE THINGS! | via givinguponperfect.com

I was talking to a friend yesterday about the wonders of motherhood. Not really complaining but yes, maybe we were discussing some of the challenges as well as the joys. Such as never having large blocks of time to ourselves.

Since Mark started working evenings (and then nights) and Annalyn went to preschool, I’ve had lots of alone time. Too much, I would have said back then. Even for a half introvert (seriously. I’m 50/50 on every single personality test I take.) being alone too much gets to be, well, too much. But what I didn’t realize at the time is that while it could get lonely, this life of days and evenings to myself allowed me a whole lot of freedom to do All The Things.

I don’t mean that I did everything. (See this post for a reminder of all the things I don’t do!) But when I wanted to binge watch a TV show or mainline an entire series of books, I COULD.

I’m not saying doing ALL THE THINGS in any department is a good idea or a healthy practice. It’s obviously not conducive to being uber successful and productive (unless your secret goal is to the best darned procrastinator on earth and then, well, go for it. though I may give you a run for your money.).

But man, is it fun.

{Also. Educational side note, because NEVER STOP LEARNING. Binge watching TV shows is so popular these days that actual studies are being done about it. It turns out – brace yourselves for these shockers – people enjoy binge watching. I KNOW!! “Despite our hectic, digitally driven lifestyles and 140-character social interactions … we’re actually craving the long narratives that today’s good television can provide. Instead of dealing with the day’s stresses by zoning out, we’d rather become engrossed in an entirely different (and fictional) world.”

So there’s that. (From here.)}

ANYWAY.

For weeks now I’ve been dying to blow through seasons two and three of Veronica Mars. After all, I can’t very well go see the movie without a rewatch of the TV show, can I? (No. Duh. Of course not. Don’t you remind me of how many times I’ve already watched the series. Obviously you don’t understand the depth of my Veronica Mars love!)

But despite being pinned to the couch for hours a day as I feed Adrienne, I haven’t been able to find enough blocks of time to accomplish this goal. I returned both seasons to the library over the weekend – a full week after watching the movie and without ever opening the cases to watch my beloved show.

So for now, at least, I’m faced with a life without All The Things. I can’t pin All The Things, I can’t buy All The Things, I can’t read or watch or even listen to All The Things. And while I can occasionally eat All The Things, I’m really trying not to (if you don’t count the cookie dough I bought yesterday or the no-bakes I made last week or…).

I’m learning to make do with a different version of All The Things, though. Just like I pretend shop at Target every once in a while (you know, walk through the store and put everything I want in my cart . . . then walk back through the store and put it all back because who can afford All The Cute Plates And Shirts And Pencil Holders And Baby Tights?), I trick myself.

I put All The Books on my to-read list . . . even if it will be months before I can actually read them.

I set my DVR for All The Shows . . . even if I know full and well I won’t get around to watching them before American Idol results shows demand to take over that space.

I make lists of blog post ideas and recipes to try and festivals to attend . . . someday. And then? I’m okay with that.

I’d tell you that I eat grapes and baby carrots by the handful instead of swallowing an entire pan of Rice Krispy treats. But, really. Who’s gonna believe THAT?!?

Not having chunks of time to write chapters and take naps and read books and watch shows and DO MY TAXES is driving me a bit crazy. Thankfully, my fake All The Things Doing is getting me through.

Much as many of us enjoy binge watching, pinning, reading, etc., it isn’t always feasible (or wise, okay? I KNOW THAT.). So – how do you cope when you can’t Do All The Things – or anything that requires chunks of time?

{Photo by jvoves}

Comments

  1. Large blocks of time to myself is a foreign concept to me since having children – in all seriousness. I actually lament the lack of time to do what I choose … my time belongs to my job, my family, my children, and now my husband and more children! It’s been four years since I remember having a block of time alone – I painted.

    • Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect says:

      I hope you can find a block of time soon! Painting sounds amazing!

  2. This too shall pass. Realizing that one day I’ll have ALL the unbroken chunks of time to myself that I want, and would be overjoyed to have a toddler calling for me, makes those days seem not so bad after all. :)

    Especially since I swear my life is on warpspeed and I’m afraid I’ll wake up tomorrow and be 90 and will have missed everything!!

  3. Oh Mary, you and I should so hang out!! Not that either of us has time, right? LOL! And I am in CA. Love this post even with my grown children. I have had to read less challenging books because I am so tired at night I cannot keep track of all the characters.
    Most of my tv watching is done On Demand after the fact, but hey, no commercials that way!
    Now, one thing I am most pleased about is that I force myself to start my day with God. I say force because I am soooo not a morning person and I am doing good just falling out of bed, showering, dressing and getting myself to work on time. I uploaded the YouVersion Bible app and I do it every morning before I get to work. This makes all the difference in my day! So, I did manage to throw in an important thing besides the ALL Things that I don’t need coaching to do. One step at a time as they say.

    Be Well,
    Lina

    • Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect says:

      Can I just say – because it’s super important – that I’m jealous of your On Demand having no commercials? :) The shows on my On Demand have commercials and don’t allow fast forward! Rude. ;)

  4. I can relate in so many ways- evidenced by the fact that I am just now reading this post days later because it’s the first time in a week I’ve been able to sit and read for a few minutes (and I chose your blog, don’t you feel special? ;)) I’m not sure I’ve figured out a way to cope yet. Mostly I just get grumpy, and I find myself being envious of my husband and his 20- minute drive to and from work- hello, that’s more alone time than I get all day! And the fact that he can go to the bathroom whenever he wants at work. Must be nice. But I’m trying to appreciate even the brief moments! And remember that it won’t always be like this. My sweet baby is 11 months already, this year has flown by… And eventually we will get a full night’s sleep or watch an entire tv show in one setting and life will seem less chaotic. At least I hope. So no words of wisdom, but you’re not alone in any of those situations!

  5. Ohhhh you are so me. A counselor who gave me my first MB test gasped at my results (mostly 50/50 or 1 -2 differences in EACH category) and said “Angela, you really don’t have a personality!” SO maybe that’s why we want everything Mary, it’s our true personality. ;) Seriously though … this post struck a chord with me … I want more time to write, and I want more time for GNOs, and I want more time to have family game time with my kids, and I want … I could go on, but then you’d want me to stop … how do I balance it all? I don’t do that well, but lately I’ve been prioritizing more and saying no to some stuff that I want but doesn’t enrich my life … and I’ve been saying yes more to the things I may not want all that much but that I need to live a healthier life.

    • Mary @ Giving Up on Perfect says:

      Okay, that’s nuts – I say being 50/50 on MB means you are FULL of personality, not the other way around! :)