Posted by: emilyosburne | June 8, 2009

Feeling Full During the Chaos

golfcourseAt this moment, I am looking out the window, lazily watching golfers in the summer sun.  I have time to breathe deeply. I have time to ponder the beauty of trees, shaking in the breeze. I am wearing my fuzzy socks and comfy house pants.  Shelby, my dog, is snoring on the floor next to me.  It’s a relaxing summer day.

At this time two weeks ago, I was at work, frantically checking my e-mail while I awaited the next class of seven year-old students.  I had a To-Do List the size of a short novel and my closet doors were holding back the chaos that characterized my whole life. Sleep could not come soon enough because I was overcommitted and ready to be committed.

Fulfillment is so easy to grasp when I have time to think and yet it seems so illusive in the middle of the everyday storms.  Why is it that my life feels so meaningful when I stop and look at a little flower and so meaningless when I run from one meeting to another? It seems like my life would feel more significant with more stuff, but it seems to be the opposite.

Have you found ways to find meaning in the middle of the chaos?  How do you stop and refuel so that each day can have the special something that it was meant to have?


  1. When I was a stay at home mom those moments of contemplation and rest came easily. Then as I started working again it was harder to maintain those “stop and smell the roses” moments but I still made time during my busy day using down time while loading software or waiting for a computer to boot to steal moments of thoughtful rest looking outside thinking about whatever was important at the moment plus I had the summers off and would really use that time to recharge for the upcoming school year. The girls and I used to have “pajama day” when we wouldn’t even get dressed. Now that I work year round I find those moments almost impossible. In fact my post on Facebook yesterday was “back from visiting my parents, had a great visit but haven’t had a free weekend in quite a while. I feel like I’m on a hamster wheel that never stops and I’m getting dizzy.” It’s hard to breathe some days. I haven’t found my restful footing yet except that I make sure to get up at 5:00 am to have quiet time. I feel it’s not enough but it’s what I have at this moment. I have to find ways to stop during they day even for a moment but busyness (sp?) usually wins out.

  2. This is such a challenge for me. Generally, I get up in the morning and drink my coffee. I look outside and think about how amazing our God is-He created such a terrific and beautiful world. Sometimes I will read a devotion, pray, or write a journal entry about my praises and concerns. If I am really, really busy and my brain is firing in 40 different directions, I will make lists…..I’m not talking a little short list on a notepad. I’m talking an entire notebook full of them-from projects to house cleaning schedules, to possible vacation ideas….and the lists go on and on. It helps me to write everything down and get it out of my head to clear my thoughts and concentrate on what really matters most-my family.
    When I have had a very hard time spending time with my kids because of crazy schedules, I will suddenly suggest after dinner that we make “Tent City”. “Tent City” consists of every quilt, blanket, extra sheet, pillow, etc. I use chairs, tables, anything I need to use and we create a giant tent in a room of the house. We have flashlights, books, just whatever comes to mind. Sometimes we tent over the TV so we can have movie night in tent city. They sleep in tent city and the next day we clean it up. It’s great and it’s fun for all ages!

  3. The end of every school year is always chaotic for parents. Trying to take off work to attend special events, field days, programs, graduations, awards ceremonies and parties can leave your head spinning. My cousin has five children in three seperate schools. She tries to do it all but often is double-booked for end-of-the-year events and has to call in friends and family members to substitute. I have two kids and still felt over-whelmed with my kids’ school programs this year. In the midst of this chaotic time, I tried very hard this year to take in every moment and enjoy seeing the excitement on my children’s faces. In some ways I would love to keep them small, but I love seeing them grow more responsible and mature with each passing day. Cherishing the special events helps me bring peace to chaotic moments.

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