For years, Thursday was my favorite day. I called it “sacred Thursday” and I told my kids and my husband that on Thursdays, we leave Mom alone. I didn’t have to work, I kept the day appointment-free, I didn’t see any friends or my sisters or my mom. My friends at work knew not to bother me unless there was a true library emergency (which is a fairly rare occurrence anyway). I got all of the housework and the bill paying and the meal planning done so I didn’t have to do any of it on Thursdays. I savored it as my one day a week when really: I was alone in my house and I could do anything I wanted.
Now Kendell works from home.
Works from home every. single. day.
And if you don’t think this creates some deeply conflicted feelings for me, you just don’t know me. On the one hand: Kendell is happier. He likes not having to drive in to work, he likes hanging out with me.
And it’s not that I don’t like hanging out with him.
It’s the other hand: I need creative time alone in my house. When it is absolutely silent (Kendell and I are like Kreacher and Sirius Black: he slips into the bedroom to turn on the TV, and then I slip in and turn it off, repeat 15x a day), when I don’t have any other responsibilities. My spirit and my soul and my psyche and my bones need this.
I miss sacred Thursday so much. And I don’t know how to resolve this problem. Because why is his happiness more important than mine? Why is mine more important than his?
But, Kendell working from home has pushed me out of the house and into doing different things on Thursdays. (On all the days, honestly!) Becky, Suzette and I emptied my mom’s house on Thursdays. Sometimes I go for a hike in the foothills by myself. Or I do errands, and by errands I mean stuff like the fabric store, the scrapbook store, maybe a stop at Macy’s for a little something pretty (no objects I need, I mean, but these activities at least give me the temporary illusion of the self-care I need).
Today, I drove up to Salt Lake City and met Becky for a run. On a sacred Thursday! We went on a portion of the Jordan River Pathway, and it was a thing my psyche also needed. We talked and laughed (as much as you can laugh while you’re running), we figured out absolutely nothing but felt heard and validated by each other. Plus, it was just so pretty this morning. Cool-ish, not cold but also not hot. Everything green—I love this kind of path, a swath of green through suburbia, a little ribbon of wilderness, or at least, of the appearance of wilderness. We saw four pelicans floating on the river—pelicans? In Utah? I had to stop and take a photo of them; it’s not very good, and two of them had already floated behind the reeds before I got there, but I’m glad I have it anyway. On our way back we took a little detour and there was a young deer in the shadow of a tree. There were ducks, quail, black-billed magpies.
When we were almost finished stretching after our run, a woman came down the trail and stopped at the benches where we were stretching. (Becky had her yoga mat, which used to be my mom’s, so we could both also stretch our backs.) She asked if we’d seen the pelicans and then told us she’d been coming to the river for a few weeks, hoping to spot them, and today we finally had. She told us about their migratory patterns—they stop on the Jordan River for a little while, and then fly south to Utah Lake to feed when the carp spawn, and then they go to the ocean. She told us that the bulge on their beaks means they are in breeding season.
I didn’t know any of this about pelicans. Honestly, I didn’t know they ever even came to Utah. I’m glad we met up with this woman and that she shared her knowledge with us because it made me understand what a gift that was, just happening to see the pelicans.
After running, we went to the fabric store, and then I drove home.
The rest of the day was just a day—I finished all the cutting I need to do and started organizing. I went to Costco with Kendell and we picked Kaleb up from his cousin’s house on the way home. I made chicken and rice for dinner, except Kaleb didn’t want it so he made himself a sandwich. (Cue my usual frustration over dinner, but if he makes his alternate meal, that is just fine.) Kendell and I watched some TV, I read my book a little (I don’t want it to end so I’m finishing it slowly), we went to bed. When Jake came home he startled me and it gave me a charley horse in my foot so he rubbed it out for me. Then I remembered I hadn't blogged so I got up and wrote this post.
Just a Thursday.
I miss my sacred Thursdays. I don’t even talk about them very often anymore because I get filled up with anger and frustration and annoyance (I am filled with it now as I write this). But there is also a little voice telling me to hold on, to appreciate the now, because things always change. So I will continue looking for different ways to spend my Thursdays, even if they aren’t sacred anymore. Even if they aren’t exactly what I need.