I sit around my house in the afternoons with a textbook open, pen in hand, and I try to focus, I really do.
It's just that I love this space that I've created so much, that my brain is bouncing up and down inside with all the fun and interesting things I can do here at home, and to just pick one, especially the one I'm sort of obligated to pick (homework's due, test is coming up), is so. . .confining.
I am surrounded by books. In every room I either have piles of books, shelves of books, or stacks of opened books in progress tucked under here and there. I want to read Gottman's marriage studies, and I also want to study the knitting books. I need to refine my peacemaking skills, and I'd also really like to plan out a space-efficient garden design, and reading the novels that my friends are writing calls out to me, and then, oh, yeah. . . back to Plato. Focus, Jenna, focus.
I would like to try that new recipe for Thin Mint Cupcakes I saw on Real Mom Kitchen yesterday. And I would like to plant my traditional red geraniums in the bright blue ceramic pot on the front porch. I would like to do some yoga practice (well, I'd like to be done doing my yoga practice), and I'd like to make Gratitude Kits for my family and the families of each of my siblings. Just for fun. I would like to work on the key change (on the piano) in Josh Groban's You Raise Me Up, and figure out how Billy Joel's hands can possibly stretch far enough to play the chords in Piano Man, and still play them at the tempo necessary to properly rock out. I would like to write a chapter in my book.
And then there's the list of things I should do, like clean the bathrooms, wash the blinds, clean the oven, write in all the kids' journals, organize the digital photos. But I'll let you in on a little secret about me. I have a very hard time doing things that I should do, when there are so many other more interesting things that I want to do. So, if given the chance, I'll usually pull a book off the shelf or try a new recipe long before I scrub a toilet. Guilty.
I must discipline my mind! I am not surrounded by good examples of this, so it's extra easy to let things go. I am motivated by the way that I feel when I am successful at self-discipline, and I have to recall that feeling and let it nudge me onward, forward, back into the books. The ones I am supposed to be reading.
By the way, Plato's Republic is nothing like I thought it would be. It's actually quite interesting, and not as difficult to digest as I'd feared, coming off of Aeschylus. In fact, I think Plato was a visionary.
Now, back to figuring out moles. (And not the little brown ones, either!)