Human doings

I don’t know about you but sometimes I have a hard time listening.  Not to others as much as I do to my body.

We had our immediate family over on Sunday in celebration of hubb’s birthday. This consists of our oldest boy, his wife and their two little kids, our youngest son, my father-in-law, hubbs and me. It was busy and fun and quite a lot of work.  Pots boiling, dishes simmering, little kids buzzing through and stopping to help and play and giggle and charm.

About halfway through the action, I felt the teeniest pinch of something. Just a twinge … of a stomach ache. Nothing serious but certainly not  comfortable.

Hugs and smooches in the driveway and little hands waving as they drove away,  I turned to hubbs who declared, “Honey .. you’re grey!

“I know,” I said.

“You ought to just go to bed,” he declared.

But … there are toys to pickup, dishes to do, etc. etc. etc.

mashed potatoes from scratch, of course

“Shhh,” he said.  “We’ll help… and the rest? The rest can wait.”

And he was right.

So I did something I haven’t done since I was about 5th grade … I went to bed on a Sunday night before 8:00 pm  … and  slept for 11 hours. Me!! The person the family can set their watch to, down for the count.  And I was all the better for it.

Above and beyond the physical ramifications, I’ve decided I want to be more mindful of how I expend my energy.  Does it really matter that I served a buffet of hot, flavorful choices or that we all had the opportunity to sit together and enjoy ourselves?

And, one more thing, this week,  I realized I also want to be more in the moment.  In the past, I have spent so much energy looking forward to something that I zipped through it and nearly missed it when it happened.  I have been so focused on that delightful horizon – on planning, prepping, arranging and doing that I forget to make allowances for … being.

We are human beings after all (vs. human doings).


Another reminder that I am still a work in progress.  And you? How well do you listen? (to your body and yourself, that is).

Categories: Attitude, Determination, Family, Growth, Home, Life Lessons, Opinion, Personal, Random, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | 30 Comments

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30 thoughts on “Human doings

  1. First, that yellow bowl is the same type my Mom ALWAYS made her potato salad in for family reunions, etc.! Brings back the memories. Hers went to another family member, but I bought one just like it.
    Love your advice on BEING more in the moment. I tend to spend a lot of time planning, scheduling, looking FORWARD.
    As for listening to my body, my right ear has been screaming at me this week. So far, I haven’t listened very well. (no pun there)
    Glad your tummy issue wasn’t serious, but glad you took hubby’s advice and went to bed early!

    • I love that yellow bowl (wedding gift) and it’s a staple in my kitchen. I cannot tell you how many people have commented that their Mother or Grandmother had the same bowl :).

      We learn as we go, right? Now go take care of that ear … and yes, the tummy issue was nothing more than a sour stomach/exhaustion.


  2. You bring to mind the story of Mary and Martha (Luke 10:38-42). Well done, MJ

    • “but only one thing is needed.” you are spot on, LeRoy. Thank you. I love it when you share bible verses that RESONATE so well … and it also reminds me (in a happy way) how much I have still to learn/remember (my bible verses). Cheers!! MJ

  3. Good observation of yourself….remember the lesson so there will not have to be another reminder!
    I don’t cook! Takes to much energy and time and preparation! Eat fresh fruit and veggies and toaster oven/microwave the rest!

    • Maybe … but more than likely, I’ll do the same thing again … old habits die hard.

      I love to cook but I love to cook for others .. More.

      Cheers, MJ

  4. Watch that tummy. You get better soon. I hate to hear you are feeling less than glorious. A great reminder to us all.

  5. Yes, I love the concept of human BEING vs human DOING. I first heard that a few years ago and it really resonated with me. I think I’m pretty good at enjoying the moment, but I’ll kill myself before and after the moment to make sure it is as nearly perfect as it can be (or that it matches the vision for the moment that’s in my head!). Hard to give up control!

    Rob and I went on vacation to the Bahamas several years ago…still in major kid raising years at the time…and we slept more than we did anything else on the trip! We were both shocked that that was as exciting to us…to just sleep without schedule…as doing anything in a tropical paradise! It was a revelation to me of how tired we both were, and we hadn’t really registered it, until we allowed ourselves to slow down. Hope you’re rested now! Sheila

    • wow – what a lesson, Sheila … sometimes I think we have to actually put the brakes on and stop to feel the speed at which we were previously traveling! MJ

  6. so timely….i’m right there with you – great at listening to and taking care of others….not so good with self! With my daughter’s shower tomorrow and her wedding fast approaching, I am determined to be rested and to enjoy myself … even if that means letting a few details fall by the wayside. These are such wonderful reminders for me! Thanks!

    • Enjoy the shower, Adrienne. What a wonderful moment for you and your daughter … there might be tears anyways, but being well-rested will give you an edge 🙂 Cheers, MJ

  7. Totally understand – I am also to Human-doer – everything has to be made from scratch – no pies from the store or quick mixes – but I am growing into a Human Being – not worrying so much and more being in the moment
    Thanks for the reminder
    Prayers for your day

  8. Oh, please take care and enjoy this weekend. Sleep in tomorrow or take a nap…have you done a nap in recent memory?

    • definitely sleeping in a little tomorrow. Naps are a glorious indulgence and I completely regret all the times I didn’t want to nap as a kid 🙂 MJ

  9. MJ,
    How true this is. We almost have to fall into pieces to do what our body is telling us it needs. Kudos for paying attention.

  10. That is hard for me to do, remember to take care of myself when am feeling bad. I hope it was just a temporary bug.

    • It was … thankfully. And I have a feeling that a lot of people, perhaps mostly women, can relate to what I was going through there. Thanks, Karyn, for commenting – MJ

  11. I think we all need to be reminded to live more in the moment and listen to our internal cues. One thing I liked that Oprah said is that lessons come to you in whispers, then shouts, then a crash (or something along those lines). The point being that your mind and body know what’s good for you and they try to tell you to listen tot he cues before it’s really bad.

    • It’s sort of contrary to what we’re taught though, isn’t it? I mean, as kids we’re in the moment but we’re taught to start looking toward our future, college, life etc. and then when we get there (now) we’re having to reverse our engines and try to just “be.” Hard lesson to unlearn, for me anyways,
      Your insight is always spot-on, Leah! MJ

  12. Human beings vs. human doings. Nicely done, MJ. LeRoy tying in Martha vs. Mary, too. Excellent.
    I hope you are feeling better at this point, and I hope you have a restful weekend and enjoy ‘being’.

    • Thank you, Lenore. I know you “get it!” – yes I am feeling better and paying a little closer attention to myself in this. New behavior!! Cheers, MJ

  13. cooper

    denial…what a concept. as we age, the listening process becomes more important. I slept the entire weekend last week, something i never do but my body wanted the rest. now i just have to stop listening when my body sez “eat that whole pizza…”

  14. Good for you and great reminder. I think I’m pretty good about listening to my body, but I also push myself as far as possible at times.

  15. You deserve the R & R. Now, if we could just listen BEFORE our body insists via illness!

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