After compounded weeks of rushing out in the mornings, rushing home in the evenings, pumping between meetings and in taxi cabs and green rooms and public bathrooms and the back of airplanes, washing parts, storing milk, carrying coolers and ice packs, not sleeping through the night in 132 days (yes, I'm still counting), coordinating schedules/supplies/instructions for nannies and babysitters, dealing with Jude getting hand foot & mouth disease which he then generously shared with me, showing up in the office with fevers and chills, attending meetings and engagements in Boston, DC, and Atlanta, negotiating with James' equally demanding work schedule, and continuing to press forward in our attempts to raise the money necessary to bring water to another million people in Africa, I kind of couldn't take it anymore.
All I could think was, this is not working.
And, I need help.
I looked at James, and waved my proverbial white flag, wishing the world stop for a moment so we could catch our breath and look each other in the eye and ask what just happened to our life.
But we knew that the world wasn't going to stop on our behalf. So, in a moment of clarity (and desperation), we deliberately stepped out of our world for a week and took a Time Out.
We hopped on a plane, and James' parents graciously welcomed us into their San Diego home. His parents took care of Jude while I recovered from my fever; they took early morning shifts with him so James and I could sleep. We played with our baby and soaked in the sweet moments we miss when we are at work.
We dipped his toes in the water.
And we handed him to his Lovey and Grandpap so James and I could walk, journal, read, float in the bay, eat real food, and take deep breaths of the Pacific air.
In all of this change since baby, I had no idea how much I would miss my husband. We are in all of it together, co-parenting and partnering together to get through our days, to care for our son.
But all of the moments of intimacy that make our marriage rich have disappeared in the demands of our new normal. James and I spent the week revisiting the values we set forth on our wedding day, that have been a compass for us in times such as these. Being the strategic executives that we are, we graphed venn diagrams of our values and tried to understand where we are and where we want to be.
We did not, of course, solve all of our problems in one week together, but we did get a chance to hit the reset button with fresh perspective, extra rest and a reminder for what matters most to us in our desire to take care of ourselves, love one another and love our neighbor. We affirmed the need to pace ourselves, to ask for help, to be willing to live differently when the status quo detours us on a path we ought not to take.
The world will not stop on our behalf, but taking moments of true rest from the hurry of life is vital. A recent New York Times article speaks to the importance of this reset. James and I recognize the privilege we have in mobility and access - but in whichever way possible to you to find rest, I hope you can make room for it, too.