I'm in a "get shit done" phase of life at the moment. I work as a nurse, I am a mama and a wife. I am the family cook and the giver of bubble bathes. Laundry to be done, errands to run, bills to pay. The days go by in a swiftly moving blur of family life activity and before we know it, it's the weekend again and I find myself savoring every moment and willing those luxurious days known as Saturday and Sunday to slow down. Slow way the hell down.
The get shit done phase of life can be exhausting. It can leave you feeling a bit uninspired, the days blending together in one big stream of things to do, none of which involve relaxing or just being still. Most days, I'm perfectly fine with this reality, knowing that this phase is short lived. Our family won't be this young forever. There are days, however, when I miss the spontaneity, the creativity, the lack of stress. I miss living moment to moment, the days stretching out in front of me like a sea of infinite possibilities. I miss my free spirit.
And so I decided to do something about it. As part of my New Year resolution of devotion, I vowed to start putting myself out there more, to take more adventures, regardless of how hard or inconvenient those adventures might be. I vowed to take my little family away from the everyday as much as possible, to experience new things together, to learn more about each other and ourselves through the power of change.
First stop: Mardi Gras. A weekend in New Orleans with my best friends and our babies. Sequins and tutus in the middle of the day. Parades and beads and doubloons under a beautiful, sunny sky on St. Charles Ave. A morning walk in City Park and late night talks in my best friend's apartment. My favorite Middle Eastern restaurant and a cup of tea during a thunderstorm. Watching my sweet daughters all dressed up in their sparkles and shine, waving their arms and cheering when they caught the best throws. Sitting in a big lawn chair filled circle on the streetcar tracks, catching up, laughing at our never ending collection of inside jokes. Dancing to the brassy tunes of the marching bands. Rocking my son back and forth as he slept through the colorful, vibrant, distinctive noises that make up Mardi Gras.
It was a refreshing, inspiring, soul reviving weekend. I laughed and cried and danced and cheered. I let myself go for a while, relaxed, breathed deep. My heart felt so full as I witnessed my best friends in their own get shit done phases: new babies, new boyfriends, good marriages, thriving careers. And I drove home thankful for all that I have, no matter how mundane my day to day tasks sometimes seem. I opened up my soul and let my free spirit shine bright, letting in some sparkle to the sometimes tired parts of my inner self. It was a magical weekend in every way. And I urge you, at least once in your life, to go see the Mardi Gras. There really is nothing else quite like it.