Last month, my community in West Michigan was hit by unusually blustery winter weather. The sub-zero temperatures, large amounts of snow, and high winds brought us five “snow days” in a row; school closed and we were “snowed in” indoors.
Suddenly all of my activities were cancelled, my kids were home, and together we all enjoyed “the gift of nothing.” In some ways I wish I could say that I used the time to deep-clean closets, prepare tax paperwork, stock the freezer with meals, get caught up on correspondence, write more Social Incites™, etc. However, that would have been “something,” and what I really needed more than anything was “nothing.” I enjoyed every minute of sitting in my pajamas, talking with my kids and my husband, connecting with other friends on Facebook, snuggling with my cat and my three-year-old, looking out at the drifting snow, snacking on occasional new recipes that we tried together (baked broccoli is delicious), and even occasionally napping.
Were we “bored?” In my house, that word is outlawed. There is always “something” that can be done. Boredom is a negative attitude that views “nothing” with disdain, and scoffs at creativity and productivity. Instead, we viewed this “nothingness” as a gift (one day after another). Nothing needed to be done. There was nowhere we needed to go (and in most cases, nowhere we could go). No one needed us outside of home. It was a beautiful gift, and we enjoyed it immensely!
Of course, “nothing” isn’t intended to be a lasting gift. We enjoyed it for a week, and then it was time to move back to “something,” many things, in fact. But even that is a gift, as I’ll write about next week.
Whether you’re enjoying “nothing” or “something” right now, I hope you’ll view it as a gift, finding ways to enjoy it and to be thankful for it!