Me Time vs Lunch Time

With routines settling back in and school started again and holidays ending, I got thinking about my routine and the little bit of time I find to get shit done.

Long ago, a friend called me for lunch, and I told her I couldn't meet that day as I had to give my husband a lift to work during my lunch hour (we only had one car and I needed it to get home later... right?) but we could meet the following day. She right out told me that my lunch hours were mine and I shouldn't be doing things for others in this time, especially for a man. He should find his own ride to work and not steal time from my day!

Her comment always felt like one of those enigmas I want to solve but can't wrap my mind around. Wasn't meeting with her for lunch considered doing something for others? I mean, I didn't call her and say she needed to chat with me, she did. Yet I was happy she did, so maybe it was more for me. It's been almost twenty years since her comment and it still confuses me, even after I had her explain it very well. She made it clear that running someone I love to work is not how one spends their lunch hour, visiting with a friend is. Yet... how would I get home from work if he had our car because I chose not give him a lift? Her glare still freaked me out. It was clear she would never find that acceptable no matter what logic I used.

I also remember the health nurse telling us during prenatal class that we had to take Me Time to be a good mother. We had to shower and eat and focus on our health so we could be good parents. Which made me wonder if this is what my friend meant. If I focus on me during this lunch time, will I go back to work a better employee?

Not much has changed in my life. My lunch hours are still not what I consider Me Time. They are Get Shit Done Time.

First off, I have to say, I get plenty of Me Time. I read and write for at least 2-4 hours a day. That is my time to just do my thing, which apparently is writing related. I work out of the home, so I appreciate the time I have in it with my family and spending time with them, even if it's to give them a lift somewhere. It is still part of how I want to spend my time. I also love the fact that my family respects my time and so I offer them their own Me Time in return where they listen to music, dance, play sports or video games. Sometimes we all sit side by side, enjoying the company of each other while enjoying our own thing.  I never feel like we're fighting for time alone or with each other, even though we are always busy.

My lunch hour is a part of my work day. I never really thought about it as Me Time. Despite what my friend insisted.

During my lunch, I always call someone who I know is lonely and who I am thinking about, every day, without fail. I always go home to have a long conversation with my dog, because it is really the only time we spend as just the two of us and we both need that time. I always eat. Those are the guarantees and since I can eat and talk on the phone or to the dog, it takes me 15 minutes to do these things which leaves me a lot of time in that hour! I might answer personal emails and visit blogs or read articles or stalk agents. I might have to run someone here or there or meet my best friend or kids for lunch. I might take a webinar that will give me the tools to help someone else. I might spend it helping or teaching someone something. Sometimes, if I feel a migraine might be threatening, I might do some yoga or spend 5 minutes in a quiet place or go for a walk. I might put the laundry in the dryer so we have clean clothes and if there are dishes I will do those. Then I head back to work full of energy and ready to dive back in.

If I was to write or read or put my feet up and just take my Me Time, I doubt I'd be happy about going back to work. I might even turn to page 75 and realize I missed the afternoon of work! lol.

Seriously though, what do you do for Me Time and what do you do during your lunch hour? Does it make you feel better to keep that hour just for you or to share it with others? Are you happy once summer is done and a routine returns?

1 comment:

Valentina Hepburn said...

I'm surprised by your friend's thoughts. We just help out whenever, don't we? Lunchtimes are my 'doing' times. A bit like you really. I work at home which means I'm never 'off duty'. There's always 'something', particularly lately. We're so busy, but far from keeping that time for me, I use it to sort washing, load washing machine, peg out washing, fold washing. Sometimes I eat. Sometimes I say to hell with it and watch Bargain Hunt. For some reason I always feel a little guilty watching TV in the middle of the day. I don't do it very often. I keep a little bit of the afternoon for me because it's usually when I don't get interrupted if I'm trying to concentrate on something. My current ms is taking ages because everything's so hectic. Samantha's getting married on the 18th. If I add up all the hours I've spent discussing colour schemes, wedding dresses (she decided she didn't like the first one, so we had to change it), venues, floral arrangements, bridesmaids and their foibles etc. etc. I could have written the first drafts of the three novels I've already started. I know what I'll be doing with all that time afterwards. Hope all is well with you and yours. Love and hugs!!xx