I can feel a serious case of the lazies coming on. Being home with Addie yesterday--having four hours of unadulterated (untoddlerated?) time to fold laundry and pack boxes and check email and blog was too, too wonderful. I'm melting a little just thinking about it. Plus, these last two weeks of the semester are always bizarrely easy. Students are working on papers, I cancel class and meet them for conferences, tie up loose ends, and so on. Not to mention there is a whopper of a rainstorm carrying on outside today. A perfect recipe for jammies, beer, sofa, napping, daytime tv.
Was there ever a me who did such things? I have vague memories of a me in the distant past who did things like flop, belly-down, on the bed and listen to an entire c.d. The extravagance.
Do you know what one of my secret dreams for the summer is? To do a gigantic jigsaw puzzle.
I'd like to just hole myself up in my little office at the new house and do a giant jigsaw puzzle. A really hard one. Like one that is all one color, and the pieces are only slightly different from one another. The urge to do this is so strong it's nearly overwhelming.
It's not as if I have summer off, by any means. I have a bunch of projects I'll be getting paid to complete, plus all that off-the-clock stuff I do over the summer but don't really get paid for. Still, time is a little more elastic. I can work from home a lot. And there are no classes, so deadlines are a little fuzzier. Fuzzy enough to leave time for the jigsaw puzzle. Fuzzy enough to take a day off now and then.
I realize it's not about the puzzle. I realize that what I really want is some time to just lose myself in some mindless activity, free from obligation. It's not as if I have some burning passion for doing puzzles or anything. I'm a freak, but I ain't that freaky. I haven't done a real puzzle in probably twenty years. Once when I was a kid--around nine or ten--I spent three whole days of my Christmas vacation doing a giant puzzle in the basement of our house, the t.v. running the entire time. Some part of me must be tapping into the mindless pleasure of that memory.
I know this because there were some puzzles at Steve and Julie's this weekend, and I didn't want to let any of the kids play with them. I wanted to do them. "Are you trying to clean up?" Julie asked me. I think she's worried I'm going to come in and try to organize her house or something. But that wasn't it at all. I couldn't really explain that I just felt obsessed about seeing all those neat little pieces come together, to have it all be complete. A sense of accomplishment without really risking anything.
What this made me realize is that I haven't had any time to be mindless. I know, I know--the Buddhists are always trying to get you to be mindful. I think it's just that everything I've been doing lately has been closely tied to a "should" or a "must." Because time is so precious and goes so quickly, I've felt the need to justify every little activity as being related to motherhood or work. This is exhausting.
The lazies, they are a'coming. Hallelujah.