Sunday, April 15, 2012


I walk in the door after a full day at work.  My husband is in the kitchen working with music playing.  The children are in the lounge.  One is playing on the computer, the others are watching a video.  I sit on the sofa, and the video-watchers clamber over me, squabbling over the space on my lap.

Once the children are fed, cleaned, and herded into bed, my husband and I collapse onto the sofa.  I pick up the laptop to browse the Reader and Facebook.  My husband holds the TV remote control – after the News he flicks through the channels.

I begin to feel restless and fidgety. I long for some space with silence.  I retreat to the bathroom, light a candle, and begin to fill the tub.I soak in the stillness and silence, as much as I soak in the hot water.

I consider the things that help me “recharge”.  Like soaking in a hot bath or going for a long walk.  The common theme I find is the solitude.  I need solitude, yet it’s so hard to find space for that in my day to day life.  I’ve found I need to make an effort to create moments of solitude for myself.

At lunchtime in the office, I choose to take my sandwiches and find a sunny corner in a park to eat them in solitude.

Sometimes I retreat to the library.

When I can I go for a walks.

When I don’t make the space to “recharge my batteries” with solitude, I become crabby and scratchy.  Making time for myself gives me the ability to become a better spouse, parent, employee and friend.

I’m learning the key is not to fill up the solitude with too much doing. I need to create the space to “be”, to open up the real me and letting the real me out.

You are only what you are when no one is looking.

Edwards, Robert C.
Quote from Quotations Book

How do you “recharge”?  And who are you when you’re alone?


  1. love this post and totally get you!! I was just thinking today that I should start taking my work lunch outside for a bit of sunlight during the winter, else there will be days I will never see it. you have got me thinking about what i do when no one is looking....a rare thing these days especially with fb and twitter and blog posts...hmmmm

  2. Introverts need recharge time to survive...and be creative.
    Widge, you have children too...
    Even extroverts need Time Out to survive motherhood !

  3. Thanks Widge and Fi.
    I'd even go so far as saying even extroverts need Time Out to survive Christchurch too.

  4. Love the ending quote and love your pursuit of solitude--I get very grouchy when I don't get enough of it, and in truth, I need A LOT of it! Anyway, thanks for this post--affirming and real :)

  5. Everyone needs it. I stay home when everyone is gone and I just "recharge".I looong to have it often. I get cranky and irritable when I'm tired. Great post Claudia.

  6. I too find solitude really healing--especially when I can get myself to go on a long walk!

    Is it too fanciful to wonder if you are really communing with God in solitude though you may not be aware of it?

    Sometimes, when I have "quiet time" I am not conscious of thinking of or speaking to God, yet I feel strengthened and healed and it's a wrench when it's over.

  7. Thank you for all your comments. This sounds like something we all find we need.

    I think you're right Anita, that we're communing with God even when we're not consciously praying.