Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The Renaissance Life

Recently I clicked on a very important article link, because those are the only ones I pay any attention to.  I can't find the article anywhere but this one was something about time and how it relates to women.  I think she mentioned something how, in the days of the renaissance, men were sitting around painting and philosophizing and writing, but women, women are different. It's seemingly impossible for women to find time to do things they enjoy because they in large part, by nature, are task-oriented list-makers. I didn't quite read it in full and I will confess, my daily [very important] article intake is plentiful and I forget things I read easily, but the author mentioned that the time she does have, she's noticed, comes in bits and pieces throughout her day. Time confetti, she calls it, the time that she will choose to optimize.  And those are the moments that count.  What we make use of that scattered, fragmented time throughout all the day's busy-ness.   

Now, I don't know if I've ever been great at managing my time. I'm not sure I'm awful either.  I certainly could make better use of it at certain times. But for some reason I've always made sure I made time for nothing.  Nothing doing. Nothingness. It's extremely important to me.  When I hear from women how busy they are I think to myself (or actually I'll just say it aloud), yeah, i'm not that busy!  And they will laugh and say, Oh Jen. And that I will be someday, as if it's something I should aspire to. But it gets me thinking about my day-to-days. Of course this varies from day to day. And often I enjoy certain kinds of busy-ness.  But to me, a lot of this busy-ness sounds like a whole lot of busy-making.  And it turns me off big time.  It's just not how I'd wish to spend my day, if given a choice, which I feel we DO have, in certain respects.

Nothing time doesn't mean i literally do nothing, though that is not time ill-spent if that's what we need.  But I like to give space for my thoughts in a day. And I realized, after I finished the article, was that I kind of DO live a renaissance life.  I told Sean that my day feels seriously lacking if I don't exert any kind of creative energy toward something.  Toward an idea, a song, some kind of writing.  I almost feel like I have to put my Jen stamp or twist on everything to make it mean something to me and if it's nothing but mundane tasks or errands, which, granted, are sometimes just necessary, then sometimes i wonder, what is it all for??  Now, days that are lacking are fine. If every day was the most amazing day ever, that doesn't even sound normal and even a bit exhausting.  But when I thought about it I realized that deep inside of me there is always that itch, that base desire, to create, to express, to examine, to play.  I always have this feeling that, with the free time I have in a day, that is what I want most to be doing with it. Reading, questioning, writing, even painting. I've taken up the brush lately for silliness sake and it's shocking how relaxing and meditative it is. It just feels so good. And to take this further and share it with those around me, to rope others into my renaissance-ness sounds quite nice to me.  Often I do put those notions aside for the moment to take care of the business, but I never forget about it, and I'll often throw the business aside in a fit of desperation and refocus my energies.

So when I think about all that, it makes me feel a bit of an oddball. It's not the renaissance, Jen. And you do, frankly, have other responsibilities and things going on than to just run off and be a free spirit of art and imagination, as dreamy as that sounds.  But it may be a very important thread in my makeup and I wonder, despite the speed of living and all the many things in a day, the summation of which helps a person feel accomplished,  I wonder if a renaissance life would really be such a bad thing. 


Alanna said...

I read that article, too! Here's the link: http://www.dailylife.com.au/health-and-fitness/dl-wellbeing/brigid-schulte-why-time-is-a-feminist-issue-20150309-13zimc.html

I came across it on Bridget of Arabia-- do you read her blog, too? (I only ask because I'm pretty sure most of my friends are all friends with each other, too. Especially the ones I've never met.)

I think I'm pretty good at snagging time for myself, also, mostly in the form of napping and reading. I have this idea that I have an artistic side that I haven't tried to tap into for years now, but really would like to one of these days. I did ceramics in high school and was constantly doodling on my notes. Sometimes I worry that I keep putting this stuff off because I'm lazy. But then I look at my five kids and think if I'm even finding time for the napping and the reading, I'm doing okay for now.

Maybe once they're all in school I can take a watercolor class or something...

)en said...

Ah! thanks for the link.

I think someone slapped it up on Facebook. To be honest, i hardly even read blogs anymore. Are people still blogging these days? I feel like they've all but died off.

Well, and I did think this when i posted it, that there would probably be people, such as those with five children, who'd like to give me a good smack. But I applaud your nap and read time. And yes, we may wish to put more time and effort into things but other things are sometimes just more important, which I get. Way to be, Alanna. :)