Reversing the rut

A couple of days ago I woke up just feeling off. Not physically sick, rather mentally exhausted. Nothing major had happened, but I think a combination of me having a nasty respiratory infection a few weeks back, Paul having a few off-colour days, Adam being the busiest he’s ever been with work and finding a new routine with work and parenting had just taken its toll. I was in a negative head-space and as a result was turning to routine to provide stability. At the time I didn’t realise it, but that routine wasn’t really helping. I was more like a hamster, stuck on a wheel, just going round and round. The same things over and over again. Instead of taking each day as it came, I was becoming too focused about what needed to be achieved on my ‘to do list’ and was giving myself little down time to just be.

Thankfully Adam recognised the nasty cycle I was getting into, and with one simple suggestion he helped me reverse the rut…

‘Why don’t you go and have lunch by the river,’ he said.

‘The weather’s going to be lovely today, it’ll be so nice by the water.’

So I did.

While Paul was down for his morning sleep I got myself organised, packing a little picnic lunch for the two of us. After he woke up, we ran an errand, then made our way down to the park that sits adjacent to the Murrumbidgee River, which flows right through Wagga Wagga. I found a shady spot underneath some trees and spread out a blanket.

It was an absolutely beautiful day and the park was really quite busy with others take advantage of the conditions. I always love people watching in those first few properly warm days in spring. It’s like everyone’s thawed out after the winter – they’re looser, seem to be smiling more and almost recharging in the sun. I know I certainly was.

Woman and baby sitting on a picnic blanket.

Paul thought the picnic was great fun. Eating lunch out of containers, rather than on the tray of his highchair was a novelty, as was inspecting the grass, leaves and tiny pine cones that lay on the ground nearby. There were ducks to hear, a kayaker on the river to watch and the smell of barbecued sausages was in the air.

Sure the picnic blanket ended up covered in Vegemite, I had to fish about four of those tiny pine cones out of Paul’s mouth and I forgot my water bottle, but for half an hour or so we were able to just hang out. The pile of unfolded washing wasn’t in my periphery vision, cleaning up was as simple as shaking the blanket out and instead of letting my mind run through the next job I needed to complete, I just enjoyed the moment.

I came home feeling refreshed and so much better than I had hours earlier. It felt like I’d finally jumped off that hamster wheel, and all it took was simple outing . It’s amazing how sometimes the smallest of things can make the biggest of differences.

Have a wonderful week.

M. x

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