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