I WANT TO DO ALL THE THINGS or What I Think About When I Can't Sleep

I have a friend who stays up all night thinking about every terrible thing she’s ever said or done in her life.

I tend to think about what I have left to do that I haven’t done. I worry myself into a frenzy about the fact that I’ll never accomplish it all. This is quite possibly because I want to do so many things. I want to write. I want to blog. I want to own a bookshop. I want to knit. I want to play more video games. I want to play more board games. I want to read more books. I want to hike more. I want to start a podcast. I want to volunteer at an animal shelter. I want to work with teens. I want to do yoga. I want to meditate. I want to bake. I want to throw grand parties. I want to travel.

I want to do all of these things, and the terrible thing is that there isn’t enough time or energy to go around. I know I simply cannot accomplish these things, but I try and tell myself that I can. I try and say “Wake up at 5 and read for one hour, then write for one hour, then do yoga, and then…” until all of a sudden I’m forgetting that I need sleep, and so waking up at 5 becomes difficult, and my daily routine that I’ve built is fucked from the start.

So how do I choose? How do I figure out what things I want to do more than ever?

The thing is, everyone always says that it’s hard to figure out what you want to do with your life. I always assume people are talking about careers when they say that and I always feel really lucky because I always knew that I wanted to own a bookshop, and maybe one day I still will. For now, being employed in one feels good enough. It’s now, though, that I’m realizing that I’m having a hard time narrowing down what it is that I want to do with the rest of my life. The parts when I’m not at work. The parts when I’m away from the bookshop. What do I do with that time? How do I parse it out? The options are endless. I have the books to read and the yarn to knit and the pantry is stocked with ingredients to turn into delicious treats. I have the laptop and the quick typing skills and the imagination to spin stories.

I just don’t have the time to chase all of these dreams.

But I think I’m starting to figure it out. I think I’m starting to realize that I just need to be structured and organized. I need to have priorities.

So here are the things I try and do every day:

I meditate. I read. I write. I work in a bookshop. I knit. I do yoga.

And then I have the things that I try and do on a weekly basis:

I bake. I blog. I read blogs. I submit at least one piece of writing to some publication somewhere. I play video games.

The rest? The rest I let myself do when I can. I work with a really great group of teens two Sundays out of every month and Fiance and I hike as often as possible. The traveling is something we’re trying to make sure we do semi-regularly, and the grand parties will happen when we have a house that can provide the space we want for things like that.

I’m trying to be easier on myself about these things. I am also planning my wedding on top of all this, after all, and it looks like that can be a time-consuming task (who knew?), but while I try and be easier on myself, I’m also trying to not let myself lose sight of these dreams and these passions. Maybe I fear waking up one day and realizing I never did so many things that I wanted to? I’m not sure, but all I know is that I never want to stop doing. I never want to stop creating. And I never want to be bored. There’s so much out there to learn and to do. So I’m doing my best to make something of this life of mine.

Anyway, that’s what I think about when I can’t sleep. What about you?


In related news, I'm still working on what I am affectionately calling "The Awkward Giraffe Project", a thing I'm doing to help save the giraffes because THEY'RE DYING AND WE NEED THEM YOU GUYS. Here's the deal: You donate to the Giraffe Conservation Society and I'll crochet you a stuffed giraffe and mail it to your house. Read more details in this blog post. No, I don't have a lot of time, but that's not your concern. It might take me a little while to get you your giraffe, but you will get one. I promise. So just do the right thing and worry about the giraffes, not me and my time management skills, okay?

Now, tell me about your life. What's new, friends?

My Obsession with Dick Van Dyke Continues...

A conversation I had with Gumby on my day off this week: Me: Hey, what's going on?

Gumby: Not much. Doing little projects and stuff.

Me: Sames. Well, not really, actually. I'm not really being productive at all... but I'm sort of okay with it. I slept in until 10:45 today and you know what my first thought was when I looked at the time?

Gumby: What?

Me: "Eeeewww... then again, Dick Van Dyke does it all the time on his day off, so I guess it's okay." I think there's something wrong with my perspectives on life.


Those of you who have seen The Dick Van Dyke show may or may not know what I'm talking about. Every few episodes there is a scene where Rob (DVD's character) has a day off, so he sleeps in, and Laura (Mary Tyler Moore - or MTM) is telling their son to not bother his dad on his day off. Whenever Rob wakes up and asks what time it is, Laura always, without a doubt, says "It's almost 11, dear." And she's not saying it like she's mad or surprised, she just says it.

This is so different from how I grew up or even think about waking up. In my family, my dad would yell at my brother for sleeping until noon - and I was never a big fan of doing that anyway.

I set my alarm for 8am on my days off. I usually sleep for a bit after that, but I love getting up "early" - there's something about sleeping that I find to be a waste of time. There's so much that one could do with their day! You could go for a walk, or read a book, or kill some dragons. I mean, honestly, if you think about all the great adventurers and stories that you've heard throughout your life, do you think any of those heroes were mega snoozers? No. They would get up at dawn and say "Today, I'm gonna save the world. I'm gonna kick some ass and then marry that waitress who served me my coffee while I was in disguise at the beginning of this film." And that's how I want to feel every freaking morning - like I could wake up and go on an adventure. Usually, I just end up sitting around and not doing my dishes. Still, though, I feel like even that is worth waking up early for!

Lately, though, my body has been all "STOP GETTING UP SO FRACKING EARLY. I'M TIRED. YOU NEVER DO ANYTHING EXCITING ANYWAY." So I've been sleeping in. Every freaking day. And it is disgusting.

But it's okay, because Dick Van Dyke does it sometimes, too. And I love Dick Van Dyke, so how can I throw away something that we share in common? Right?

Like this: I need to start doing more awesome things with my day. Suggestions? Throw them at me, people. Make my life exciting!