An Affair With Freedom

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I have been feeling frustrated lately.

I feel this constant pressure to prove my logical conclusion for why I choose to do, or not do, something.

Not much goes on inside my head about the decisions I make.  I feel something and I either move towards it or away from it.  There isn’t much thinking or calculation involved on a logical level.

But I have spent the past 4 years really trying to be a calculated, intentional, well thought out, organized wife and mom…and I am exhausted.

I’m horrible at it.  In a free moment, I don’t run to complete a household task like laundry.  I run towards the computer to write.  When we get to the end of the day and I’m scraping some leftovers together for dinner, and my kids are digging through the dryer to find their pajamas, it feels like I didn’t do a “good” job because we didn’t get it all done during the day.

Something inside keeps coming back to the idea that tasks completed aren’t the metric of a successful day.

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I would much rather have dance parties and milkshakes in the middle of the afternoon with my kids.  I would love to have days of laying in the shade watching the leaves blow in the wind.  I want to make huge messes and laugh hard.

But what I keep hearing in my head is, “Well Lauren, you better not.  That’s not prudent or responsible.  Are you sure that’s wise? How is that character building?  That’s not healthy.  How can that be good for your children?”

And I am tired of being an annoying adult when all I want to do is be an imaginative kid again.

Immediately, after writing the above, I came across this poem in my Facebook feed from a friend.


you’re not a kid anymore.

your reservoir of youth, spent of all its promise.
that is not to say you can’t still be wild.
that you can’t affair with freedom,
or absolve yourself of every crime.
you can still invent colors
and ride your tiny, but pure hates and loves
like a bike. no hands. and no feet.
all those feelings. blowing through your hair
like a tenth summer wind.
every feeling. they will always whisper you true:
you can still be all those things.

you just also have to be something more.

by: Joshua Thacker

 

I want to know freedom.  To embrace it in the hopes that I could be wild again.  Right now, I feel so trapped with the mundane, never-ending responsibilities of adulthood.

This poem grabbed something my heart was longing for, an affair with freedom.

I would love for someone to say, “Lauren, it’s okay to live expressively and fluidly.  You don’t need to have a logical answer prepared. You are free to feel.  You are free to embrace the colors, scents, and noises of the world.  Take it all in and enjoy the beautiful mess that is life.”

YOU ARE FREE!

I find myself having moments where I can push the constraints of societal expectations off of me, and imagine what it would be like to really live free.  But then, by the end of the day without even noticing, I have put myself back into this box of “shoulds”.

blech…

Let’s go invent colors and hear the wind whisper to us.

 

Photography by Sarah Waggoner

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  • Laura H

    I definitely agree – I battle the “Shoulds” daily. It’s the hardest part of balance – much harder than work / life or kids / work or whatever you want to call it. It’s the internal balance between want and should…

    • fancynonsense

      Thanks for sharing Laura. You are right, the internal balance between wants and should can be so hard.

  • Robin M

    I think you’re pretty fabulous, along with your coffee giving angel at 7:30 in the morning. I see the product of your hard work every day and know that he’s living a pretty fulfilling life at home. Also, riddle me this! How do you know that we aren’t doing random dance parties at school… newsflash…. WE ARE! HELLO head shoulders knees and toes! See you tomorrow! P.S. Have you figured out that I peek outside every morning to see if you’re by the bunnies?

  • Tasha

    I can so relate to this. Your blog is beautiful, Lauren!!

  • heatherrene

    I can so relate to this! And oddly, my list of “shoulds” and the intensity of my mom guilt grew ten fold when I was given the opportunity to work from home. In one sense a dream realized, and yet somehow most days feel so unfinished, unaccomplished.

  • Ashley

    Thank you for this .