Recently I went to Canberra for three days with Mr.4, while hubby stayed home with Mr.1. It was partly so we could have some one-on-one time with one kid each, and also because we didn’t really want to pack Mr.1’s paraphernalia up (portacot, stroller etc) for such a short trip. Mr.4 and I met up with my parents in Canberra, so he spent a lot of time with them and was suitably spoilt rotten.
As a result, this allowed me some precious time off. Ah yes, alone time. I happily admit that time alone is something I need occasionally to recharge and allow my brain to think without being interrupted. Without thinking about what I need to do next!
Usually, my ‘alone time’ consists of things like a twenty minute cafe break; a half hour manicure; a walk down around the beach; or if I’m feeling indulgent, I’ll try to escape to the movies (yes, I love seeing a movie. At the cinema. All alone!)
So having a fair chunk of three whole days alone threw me a bit. The old brain wasn’t used to having so much time at its disposal to just…think. Pre-kids of course, I’d spend hours just lazing around in bed on the weekends, napping like a baby and just pondering life. (Cue hysterical laughter at the thought of that now!)
While I was away, I realised that these days, more than a couple of hours of uninterrupted thought leaves me feeling a little ‘out of sorts’. Especially when you decide, like I did, to impose a ban on using my laptop, and any form of social media. Oh yes, I’m a smart cookie, didn’t you know?
So I walked around Lake Burley Griffin, and I thought.
I thought some more as I walked across the ridiculously oversized stretches of lawn between Parliament House, the NMA, the Dept of Treasury, the NLA…
I saw every exhibit, at leisure, in the National Gallery of Australia. The eerie quiet in that place is certainly conducive to letting the mind think things through.
I sat in cafes, drank copious amounts of coffee, wrote and wrote…and enjoyed a little people watching (crazy lady in the corner alert).
So what did I conclude after all this thinking? A fair bit, but a few randoms include…
1. The city of Canberra still looks like Macquarie Uni to me, only just on a larger scale.
2. The vast expanses of lawn around the city seem so wasteful. And they must have a fair few water tanks keeping the lawn that surrounds Parliament House so lush. I’d hope it’s tank water they use.
3. Mr.4 can have his favourite teddy bear whenever he likes. When we were staying in Canberra, we shared a room and I learnt that he whispers to Teddy as he drops off to sleep…and whispers to him the moment he wakes up.
4. My parents are getting old, and it terrifies me. My Mum retold an incident to me, forgetting I was there next to her the entire time. My Dad started driving off while I was still standing on the kerb getting Mr.4 in his car seat. These sorts of incidents are initial signs that they are ageing more rapidly now…and the thought of how things will be in 5, 10, 15 years, is a scary one. My solution after considerable thought, is to simply not dwell on it. It’s too depressing otherwise.
5. Mr.4 and I are not travelling without hubby and Mr.1 ever again. Three days apart was three days too long.
6. I truly love blogging and missed writing terribly. I’m not particularly good at seeing long-term things to completion – so for me, the realisation I need to blog and can’t ever see myself stopping, means I’ve definitely found a passion!
7. I am so grateful to live where I do. I always am, but sometimes it takes going away for a few days to just appreciate it that bit more.
And I didn’t know that Sandringham beach, circa 1933 by Clarice Beckett, takes up precious wall space in the National Gallery of Australia.
8. I am so fortunate to have my little family, and that we are all healthy. I like to live for today and, most of the time, only think about the present.
9. I concluded that it’s not a good thing, for me, to think too much. Sounds like I’m dumbing myself down? Well maybe I am. Deliberately. Because I think it does me no good to over-analyse stuff. I’m fortunate to have a busy life so I’m not left with much time to ponder things. I think there’s real benefit in keeping life – and thoughts – simple. Simple, for me anyway, spells happy!