We sleep and wake at odd times: our tiredness, we discover, has many layers.
-Tony Cohan, On Mexican Time.
Lately I have been feeling like every day is at least two days long. And in that space of time, I am not quite sure what happens. I don’t even know how it happens. It’s as though time is actually dissolving before my grasping hands. I wish I could momentarily step out of the earth’s gravitational pull and somehow slip through the gap of a day: An entire 24 hours devoted to my renewal and to the tying up of loose ends. Unfortunately, life does not give time outs, and I am deep in the midst of a space I like to call *“Mother Time.”
The idea of “Mother Time” came to me when I started reading the virtual book club’s pick of the month: On Mexican Time, by Tony Cohan. I was immediately struck by the title and, as I delved deeper into the story, I could sense the peace and calm Cohan was trying to convey in his “sufficiency of days.” Having spent time in Mexico, and other like-minded places, I do understand this way of experiencing time on a superficial level: I enjoy it, I strive to be that groovy, but still I am a westerner…with a puritan work ethic…steeped in an ideology of production…set in the “having it all” mindset.
I have to say, however, I am beginning to cave. I hate to admit this, even to myself, but I am really tired. And besides that, I am very NERVOUS because compared with a lot of other women; I don’t think my plate is even that full. I am not a single mom and I’m not a working mother.
But still I feel like the work never ends. All the gardening, house cleaning, dog walking, baby swinging, cooking, dishes, entertaining, trying to exercise, maybe look nice, buy some new glasses because your baby broke your very last one and now your drinking coffee out of a shot glass from your college days oh OH and then try to find time to write because it clears your mind but there is no time by the time you try and then sleep beckons and oh yeah maybe I should try to seduce or be seduced but my mind is so cluttered because I haven’t had time to write and sort my thoughts and by now I have a serious writers cramp and my swirling thoughts collide in the air above my head creating such a cacophony I wonder if I might be making less sense than Babou’s first attempts at communication which makes me wonder if it was only coffee I put in that shot glass or maybe I should be using something stronger.
And that’s when I realized I am in “Mother Time.” That it is ok. The rules I once applied to myself no longer work or even really make sense. The rhythm of my day is not an agenda as much as a tango between loosely held goals and the needs of my family. The one goal and agenda I am holding firmly onto is that I will not lose myself in the fray. This is what I have come to call “Mother Time.”
My name is Jo, I am in Mother Time. Please don’t break my shot glass.
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