This morning, like every other morning, I went through my routine. My busy mom of 5 checklist. Get up, get myself ready, get kids up, go downstairs, start the first load of laundry for the day, get backpacks packed and everything ready for the day ahead. If you're a mom I'm sure your routine is fairly similar.
But that's the problem with routines. They repeat. Constantly. It's like being on auto-pilot or when you're driving somewhere but you're deep in thought about what the best cheesecake flavor is and suddenly you've arrived at your destination. You're physically there but you're not there. Sometimes we don't think, we just do. Our brain is so clogged with client work, appointment dates, holiday plans and shopping lists that we forget to actually live our lives.
That was so me this morning. I did my usual, checking off items on my internal checklist when I noticed that washer sounded different. When I went to investigate, I saw that I had indeed started the washing machine WITHOUT putting the dirty clothes in. In fact, the dirty clothes were in a basket RIGHT in front of the washing washer. How in the world did I miss that is beyond me. I tried to stop the cycle to add the clothes but the drum was full of water so I just let it finish the cycle before I started another one (this time with clothes).
That silly little mistake was enough to make me see that I live on auto-pilot way to much. My life is full of dirty laundry but my washer is running empty. Now, I like consistency. I like dependability. I like routines. I'm married to an engineer for Heaven's sake. But I really need to turn off my auto-pilot once in a great while and live my life. I only have one and I feel as though it's flying past me in a blur of to-do lists, Pinterest boards and stinky boy socks.
Consistency is great but sometimes we need to think outside our routine. Do something out of your ordinary. Eat ice cream for breakfast and have dessert first. Put down the dish towel down and have a tea party with your kids. Dishes will be there later (and somehow they will mysteriously multiply), laundry can go unfolded another day (it's already been a week, what's another day) but living and enjoying your life only happens once so don't let it pass you by.