As a homeschooling mom of five kids, who happens to be an introvert, I often find myself craving alone time. I love my kids, and as I wrote in my story, Behind the Blog, I find great fulfillment in motherhood and homemaking. Even though that is the case, however, I also need time just to be alone . . . to ‘think my own thoughts,’ so to speak. So I’ll share with you here some of the ways I carve out time for just such a thing.
Alone With God
I need time alone with God . . . just to be still and know that he is God. My favorite way to find this time is by taking a walk.
The motivation to begin taking walks regularly actually came from my cardiologist’s admonition to do so for the benefit of my heart’s health. At first, it seemed impossible to carve out time for exercise. How could I just ‘do nothing’ when there was work to be done! But I decided to give it a try, and have found that time to be refreshing and invigorating.
It’s very easy for me to sense God’s presence when I’m outside surrounded by his beautiful creation. Away from the noise and busyness of a full house, I can think and pray about what’s on my heart; what I’m struggling with; what I long for; what I want for my children, my husband, my church, my friends . . . . and I can’t help but praise Him for all the beauty I pass along the way.
Here’s a sampling of that beauty.
Alone With My Husband
My husband is my closest friend; I love just spending time with him. Afer the kids go to bed, we get uninterrupted time to talk about our day, read, or browse the world-wide web on our computers ;), all the while enjoying peace and quiet. Of course there are those calls from upstairs for another drink, or something else equally as urgent, and sometimes there’s laundry to fold or paperwork to catch up on, but even still, I love that we can be together, just the two of us. We also love the times when we leave our responsibilities completely behind for an evening and go out for dinner.
Once a week, for as long as I’ve been a mother, my mother-in-law has generously taken the kids for me so I can have an afternoon out, and they can have fun at Grammy’s house. I can’t tell you how much I’ve enjoyed this luxury! I often do my shopping (which is a much more streamlined process with just one person, let me tell you), but I’ve also used this time to meet a friend for lunch or coffee, or simply to catch up on housework. I know I am
spoiled blessed to have such a privilege!
And finally, I enjoy spending time alone doing something fun. I’ve recently discovered that if I reward myself with blogging time when I get up an hour or two before breakfast, then I’m much more likely to get up early! I’ve never been an early riser, and I frequently have trouble getting to sleep at night. Finding something to motivate me to get out of bed just might be changing that, I think. I really enjoy having the house to myself to think and write while the house fills with daylight, and the birds start singing.
Looking for Possibilities
So to my fellow introvert mothers: Look for whatever possibilities you may have to recharge, refresh, and renew your spirit through times of peace and quiet. I realize this peace and quiet may come in different ways than I have listed above; we each have a unique set of circumstances God has placed us in.
- Make good use of nap time! Or if your kids are past that, have them go to their rooms (or you go to your room!) for a set amount of time. It’ll do everybody good.
- Find something to do that will motivate you to get out of bed in the morning, and get up while you can still have the house to yourself.
- And finally find some time at the end of the day to connect with your husband, even if it just means sharing a quiet house together after the kids go to bed.
What are some ways you’ve found to have time alone? Please feel free to share them in the comments section below.
This post is the first in a series of weekly posts on Time Management. Still to come: Finding Time . . . To Get It All Done, and Finding Time . . . To Manage a Household.