On Sunday afternoon, while the littlest Will napped, Daddy took the four big kids to a fun harvest party type fundraiser for a local charity. I waved goodbye and blew kisses as the van pulled away, and headed back inside with a smile. I knew exactly what I was going to do.
To be honest, feeling lousy in early pregnancy really zaps my creative spirit. It's a double edged sword, really, because making space to be creative energizes me. I've missed it for a while now, and I was most pleased to find some time where I felt well enough to dive in.
I turned on my Alison Krauss pandora station, poured myself a bit of tea and settled in for some meditative sewing, surfacing about an hour later with some quick change pants for a friends' little one. There is really nothing quite like the feeling of finishing up a project, even a quick one like this. I draped them over a chair and snapped a quick picture before cleaning up all of my supplies. By the time my family came home, I felt refreshed and rejuvenated.
It all serves as a reminder to me, how taking moments here and there for creativity really matters. Obviously not everyone is going to be interested in sewing or knitting like me, but some like scrapbooking or painting, gardening or writing, playing or writing music. Creativity takes us down to a raw part of ourselves that reflects the One who created us - and gives us the ability to look at our work, at the thing we created out of a spark of an idea, and enjoy the results. Creating is, for me, a great joy in life. Discovering new things, continuing to learn through practice, and enjoying the fruits of creativity really feeds a part of me that yearns for that expression.
But how does a Mom, pregnant with her 6th, find time for creativity? Certainly it would be easy to fill all of my time with my work and never make the time for creating. And that is just the thing: time must be made for it. I have found that keeping my projects organized so I can quickly and easily pull them out when I find myself with a bit of time is quite helpful. Having some more portable projects, like small scale knitting, can mean stealing moments here and there during car rides with the family to get a bit of work done. To me, the very most important thing is to prioritize it. I'm not afraid to say, on a Sunday while the family naps or plays outside, "I'm getting some sewing done for about an hour." That signals to my family that Mama is busy, and unless someone is bleeding or the house burns down, they are on their own for a bit. Evenings, after kids are in bed, are great times for spending some time on creativity, but I try not to stay up too late because that can backfire into the next day. Scheduling time into your week can work well, too. If I see that I will be waiting at ballet for a few hours, I can be prepared to take along a project. Or if I see that Daddy is taking the little ones to church activities on a Wednesday evening, I can be sure to capitalize on those precious moments alone.
The truth is, people waste time in all different ways (me included!). Mindlessly cruising the internet or spending hours on Pinterest, watching a few episodes of a favorite TV show, etc. I try to remind myself that I always feel good after making time to create - and that's not always true of those other pursuits.
How do you make time to express yourself creatively? How important is that time to you?
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