Is it the easiest thing in the world — or the most difficult in today’s wired age, where we (and work) are “always on” ?
For me, after years of battling cancer online and off, with the help of so many friends from all over the world, logging off is terribly hard. Putting the twitter down feels like telling friends “not now,” and I have the hardest time saying that.
But this week I’ve tried to unplug a bit to be present for my children as they deal with going back school, to a new school, and to kindergarten for the first time. I’ve worked without (gasp!) the internet turned on, and I’ve gotten a lot done. And I’ve gone back out to the garden while the puppies play, pruning the butterfly bushes that took a beating when we lost our tree. I didn’t even notice when the butterfly bushes broke, I was so busy. That’s not me. Busy, sure, but too busy to play with puppies? To care for my garden? To sing with my children as they swing (I can’t push, but I can be with them), or to teach them to hit a baseball?
As I unofficially “go back to work” this week, now that the kids are in school all day and a third NASA contract is coming to fruition, I am also trying again to implement one new thing for work, for play, and for relaxation: being present, and being thankful for all the science and medicine that has enabled me to have productive work days; lazy afternoons with my children, puppies, and friends; and life itself, three years I thought I would never have. I am so lucky, and I am working on being present.