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Ordinary Life

Thursday, January 27th, 2011

There is much to be said about having an ordinary life. Ordinary in the sense of balanced, not disastrous, not crazy successful. Just one day at a time of comfortable normality.

I have come to realize that the pattern of ordinary days brings contentment. Simplifying those days and eradicating the hectic as much as possible gives me the time and space to be happy. Not a wild dancing on the table happiness. But a warm deep uncomplicated acceptance that this is my life and I like it how it is.

Have I achieved all that I set out to achieve in my life? I still have dreams (writing a novel, remember?), but they are mostly fairly achievable with a bit of work. No more pie in the sky aspirations. Many of the dreams that I had when I was younger have been dumped along the way. I don’t want to run a major corporation or compete in the Olympics. I’d just like to stay healthy and be able to raise my kids to be civilized balanced and happy people. With ordinary lives….

I almost feel sorry for people who really do believe they can do it all and have it all. You can’t, you know. Someone always pays.

My life is unspectacular. I’m lucky enough to live somewhere very beautiful, but my wants and needs are modest and above all I value having time for the things that are important to me and my family. Right now I’m investing a lot of time in the learning of French irregular verbs with my son. He finds it really hard and I’m so glad that I can be there for him when he needs me. I can’t imagine what would happen if I wasn’t here. Maybe one of his sisters would step into my shoes, but that would be expecting a lot from them.

I realize that I am very, very lucky because I’ve been able to work freelance from home for years – so I’m always here when I’m needed. And hopefully not too stressed. That doesn’t work for everyone I know and I do appreciate it, believe me. Also I’m happy in my own company, so being home all day doesn’t mean I’m climbing the walls. But I did have to make changes to get to where I am, and I did have to swallow some pride.

I think it was worth it.

Ladies (and Eric), please raise your glasses to Ordinary Life!

Helen

10 Responses to “Ordinary Life”

  1. Nicole Says:

    I have been appreciating the normalcy of my life of late as well. This past year has not been the easiest for us, but we have a lovely home, great children, our health, and the time and money to pursue our interests. I compare my life with that of some of the gals I work with at my little part time job and cannot believe the bad choices, drama, and idiocy they live with on a daily basis! I feel very blessed.

  2. Laurie Says:

    I’m with you. I have an empty nest and 2 part-time jobs that are nearby. I love being home with myself knitting, reading and listening to music. (love to have hubby home too! ) Our big nights out on Saturdays consist of supper at a local restaurant, a trip to K-Mart and a gas tank fill-up!

  3. Linds Says:

    I see such peace in this beautiful post, and oh, how I agree with you, Helen. There is no way to have it all. My life is unremarkable too. Maybe I need to re-post something along these lines from my perspective again. I have spoken about similar things before, but this spoke volumes to me.
    Thanks!

  4. Susan @ Blackberry Creek Says:

    Ordinary is my favorite way to go. I love this post, Helen.

  5. Wendy Says:

    Excellent Post and Cheers to you!

  6. CarlaHR Says:

    What a lovely post Helen – I feel as if we had this conversation while walking in the peaceful woods pictured. I too am so grateful for my “uneventful” life. I took early retirement in order to have more time with my husband who had retired several years earlier. While it meant a smaller pension than if I had worked longer we have no regrets. We have our home, enough money to live comfortably (by our standards) and the time to pursue our interests.

  7. Jan H Says:

    I was just mentioning with someone today about being content. So amazing you would post something about the very same thing on the very same day. Again, I feel a connection with you. Cheers to you and your extraordinary “ordinary” life.

  8. Crystal Says:

    I’ve come over via Linds’ – so nice to meet you and read your thoughts. They are so very similar to mine! Four years ago I took a leave from my teaching position and then resigned – and I am so happy and content now! I have TIME – time to create, to travel, to read, and most importantly – to be a grandmother. I still go back to school to sub – when it suits me! My husband used to ask me about my dreams and goals and I could never really articulate big huge ones. Now I know that living happily and contentedly, just as I’ve done, was really my goal all along. Thanks for putting this post together. I’ll be back to read more šŸ™‚

  9. Kathryn Says:

    I am visiting from Linds blog too. Lovely post.

  10. Donnetta Says:

    I’m stopping by from Lind’s blog. Seems I’ve been thinking and being challenged with thoughts along these lines recently as well. Thank you for this post and perspective to take into the new week.