As I write this blog, it is Wednesday.
“Hump day” to some – “mid week” to others.
I was thinking about the routine in my life.
My alarm goes off at 6:20 and I deliberately don’t linger in bed for fear of falling back asleep. More times than not, a full bladder has me up before the alarm. Do I hold it in and try to fall back asleep for an hour…do I get up and go really quickly so I can get some more sack time? Decisions, decisions.
In the shower, apply deodorant, brush teeth and do my make-up (nah, not really…just checking to see if you are paying attention), down the stairs to put the kettle on to make some coffee. Now that my kids are older, preparing lunches only relates to what I am planning on making for lunch. Breakfast made. In front of the TV for a bit while eating breakfast, then back upstairs to get changed and then out the door to work.
The drive these days is about 45 minutes…about 60 minutes return (on a good day). Only worse when the weather is inclement.
Work, work, work…then back in the car and home again for dinner and some quality family time. With one kid at university and holding down a part-time job, my evenings don’t include much time with her and if I do see her it’s because I am picking her up from the subway. My younger daughter does hang out with us more but I see that changing as she is now in high school and developing her social network and maybe even doing some homework.
Chilling in the living room until about 10:45-11:00 and then back into bed for hopefully a good night’s sleep.
There it is….my routine. Some minor deviations during the work week and a bit less structured on the weekend.
But, it’s my routine. I cannot imagine not having a routine. While many of the things that I do in my routine are routine, they are an essential part of my life and of living. In fact, they are essential ingredients to life (beyond food, water and shelter).
Adventurous people might say that the routine is mundane. I simply disagree.
I can’t imagine how it will feel the day I die and not be able to go to Costco on lunch to pick up a 6-pack of tuna or to fill up my car with gas at the Esso station near my office. I can’t imagine lugging the recycling container down our front steps every second Tuesday of the week. I can’t imagine having to bleed the radiators every fall or rake the leaves several times before the first snowfall.
Shovelling? Can’t imagine not doing it (well, in this case, I can!!)
I can’t imagine not taking my shirts to the dry cleaners and keeping my eye on my illegally parked car so I don’t get a ticket. I can’t imagine not going to the LCBO with an empty shopping cart and looking at buying some different wines or beers (and maybe a few coolers for my 18 year old daughter).
I can’t imagine not getting my license sticker updated every year and kicking myself for not paying those outstanding parking fines.
I can’t imagine not doing grocery shopping with my wife every Sunday – trying to figure out what the hell to make for dinners during the week. I can’t imagine not having to lug the bags of heavy groceries across the street to the parking lot and to the trunk of my car.
I can’t imagine not taking weekend walks with my wife…walking mostly over familiar territory on a brilliant sunny day talking about this and that…laughing and arguing but always loving each other.
Why am I writing about what some might consider as the boring and dull? Because at the soon to be ripe old age of 50, it’s not boring and dull…its life.
As the band Talk Talk said in one its more popular songs “Life’s what you make it”.
Living life is not only about jet-setting across the world, bungee jumping, or other thrill-seeking activities. There is joy in everything we do because we are alive and not six-feet under.
It is all about the little things that make life so worth living.
I might bitch and moan about taking out the garbage or the organics every Tuesday but that one event is a regular event…every week (barring any work-stoppage), that chore needs to be done and it is a part of my life.
Going through the motions doing chores or following a routine can either be a dreadful or wonderful thing. It’s all in your mindset.
Just remember, it beats the alternative.