|Our relaxing, technology-free family room|
Five days a week we are busy. Very busy. We wake up at different times, and nearly every weekday morning since our marriage more than two years ago, I leave the house first, before David even wakes up. At the end of the day we make our way home at different times, and often don't lay eyes on each other until well into the night. We eat dinner together in the living room in front of the TV because we are too tired to make conversation. And when it's time for bed, I always go to sleep first, due to the aforementioned early wake-up. And most nights I drift off to sleep to the sounds of a laptop keyboard clacking and a television humming, often well into the night.
This is what emerges when you stir the cauldron of one full time job (mine), two self-owned companies, which generally translates into about four full time jobs (David's), and the various other obligations and activities that make up a life.
Five days a week we are busy. Very busy. So that is why, in our house, Saturday mornings are a break in the pattern.
We are lucky that Shabbat, the Jewish Sabbath, gives us a built-in pause button. For 25 hours beginning right before sunset on Friday and lasting until a little after sunset on Saturday we just stop. We don't answer the phone, turn on lights, or drive a car. We don't watch TV, use a computer, run errands, or set an alarm. iPads and wallets go into a drawer, the washing machine stands silent, and there is no cooking happening in my kitchen.
Instead, on Saturday mornings we wake up when we want to, sit on the couch and drink coffee. We read books and magazines, and have actual conversations. We don't sit in our living where we spend most weeknights, but rather spend the day in the family room - a room we outfitted with comfortable couches, my bookshelves, a skylights and tall windows, and absolutely no electronics. We eat lunch when we feel like it, spend most of the day in sweatpants, and take a nap if the mood strikes. If the weather is nice, we might take a walk or visit some friends, but we don't always. We could go an entire day without seeing anyone but each other.
Once the sun goes down on Saturday night the phones start ringing, the TV goes on and plans are made, either together or separately. Sunday is filled with errands and chores and long runs and things, and on Monday we wake up and start all over again.
I'm not sure I could make it without having Saturday morning just beyond the finish line of my week.
Five days a week we are busy. Very busy. But that's just fine with me.
Because Saturday morning is our time, and we are not busy at all.