I love summer. I love the warmth, the sunshine, the vitamin D, the fresh fruits and vegetables, the activities, and the scenery. I love the time with my kids and making memories with them. (You can read more about all that in this post.)
But here I am, just over a week in, and feeling completely overwhelmed. My head is swimming with everything I am trying and wanting to do. I’m stressing about whether I’ll miss something on my summer ‘bucket list’ and deprive my children of some grand experience. I’m trying to stay on top of my cleaning schedule in the midst of it all. And did I mention that I’m potty training my youngest this week? (We’re going hardcore this time – cold turkey on the diapers. I suppose I’ll let you know how that goes.)
The biggest problem with becoming so overwhelmed is that my kids usually bear the brunt of it. This morning, I certainly wasn’t the patient mama that I strive to be. Sure, they were misbehaving, but I could have kept my cool a lot better if I hadn’t been feeling so stressed out.
Amongst the many things I am trying to do, I’m keeping a few plants in my backyard. I have two planter boxes for vegetables. Today, it was time to thin out the carrot and dill plants. I’ve learned in my short years of vegetable growing a simple yet profound truth: less, is more.
I absolutely hate thinning them out. I’ve watched them from before they were sprouts, and now, they’re perfectly good plants. However, by the time I am done, I will have uprooted more than half of them.
And why do I do this? So the few that are left can flourish, have room to grow, and bear more fruit than they would have if they were crowded out by countless others.
Life is a LOT like that. If I try to do too much with my kids over the summer, we won’t have room to enjoy any one thing to its fullest potential. Stress, exhaustion, and worry will crowd out the fruit that I am trying to grow: joy, positive interactions, rest, and renewed health.
Tomorrow, I will have to tell myself to simmer down. I know I’ve got to let some stuff go. I pray that I choose well – what to keep and nurture, and what to uproot.
How’s your summer going? Do you have a ‘bucket list’? Are there things that you are having to let go of for the time being? I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences in the comments section.