Not really. During those in between times- the periods of adjustment- that's when I have a bit of trouble with balance.
My life was easily balanced during the 25+ years of raising four daughters. I quickly adjusted with the birth of each daughter and fell into a smooth routine each time. Of course, by routine, I mean I learned to go with the flow. As long as you can do that, the balance is there. My balance was not having an agenda and learning to change horses in the middle of the stream because, if you've got kids, just trying to have a set schedule is impossible. Someone will always throw a wrench into something. Go with the flow and you feel balance.
But then, the last one headed off to college and, BOOM! No more balance. I worked hard in my search for empty nest balance. It only took me about three years but I did it! And I liked it. Except that there were some long hours that still seemed empty. And then, I was offered the opportunity to teach in the computer lab at the elementary school my daughters attended.
BOOM! Empty nest balance gone and the adjustment period was back. It didn't take me too long this time. I had no children at home so all I had to do, really, was go to school, teach, come home and spend time with my pup. If I wanted to eat, I would cook or just have leftovers. If I wanted to prepare meals on the weekend for the week, I would. If I wanted to garden, I did. What about the mister? Hey, I was working now too so he could do whatever he wanted to. His adjustment in finding balance was probably harder than mine. I found balance that was quite liberating.
Until two of the daughters moved back home.
Biggest BOOM of my life. The first one was only going to be here for one year at the most. She's in her second year. The second one just appeared about three months ago with no idea how long she will stay. The balance is evading me. I had gotten close until second daughter moved back. Now there is no semblance of balance to be found.
So far, balance is not hiding in the war zone that are their rooms. Rooms that I had just finished redecorating before they moved back in.
It's not hiding in the plethora of dirty dishes that sit in huge piles until I wash them.
It's not hiding in the disgusting filth of their bathroom that even I won't clean.
All is not hopeless, however. Because, every so often I do catch a glimmer of balance. I see it grin at me when we all realize that we have the same thing in common like hating it when the bottom of our feet itch.
Or how none of us cares about fine china or silver. Or when we fall into hysterics when we sound like we're all arguing but we're just being silly or mocking something from a movie. Or when I get the feeling of belonging that comes with being with two of the best people I know. The sense of comfort at belonging to this group of crazy girls.
I see it in the knowledge that we can be who we are and are loved anyway.
I even see it when I get flustered and call a Cadbury Cream Egg a Cradbury Cheese Wafer. And it makes Facebook. Sigh.
Yes. Sometimes balance is hard to find. But, if we look deep into the heart of our relationship with our children, no matter how old they are, we'll see it.
This is Day 2 of the A-Z Challenge!