There is a fine line between being involved in your community and being, quite simply, too busy. I may not have actually crossed the line, but I am dancing close to it.
This week I have not been home one night. Every single night there has been a meeting or an event that I have had to attend (or, I should say, chosen to attend, because, really, it's all a choice, right?).
The kids don't seem to mind--they love having a babysitter and I have kept it varied for them by rotating through our stable of sitters this week. I, too, like the variety of the various activities, especially since we have actually managed to sit down for dinner as a family each night (except one) before I have run out the door. But tonight I have found myself asking, "When is one more thing too much?"
Not every week is this busy. This week we had two back to school nights and a lovely dinner at the rectory as extraordinary additions to the usual routine of choir practice, Opus Dei, sporting and scouting events. By themselves, each item we participate in, either ongoing or extraordinary, is worthy of our time. But when do we decide that the best use of our time is doing nothing at all beyond spending the evening together in our home?
I love being involved in our church and school. I love that our children ultimately benefit from our activities through the friendships we strike up with other involved families. However, I am sensing the onset of diminishing returns in all that we do, and I am hoping I can be a good judge of what I should say "no" to. I want to enrich my children's upbringing through community involvement, not neglect them in the name of volunteerism.
I guess that is what the downtime of summer is for--doing much more "nothing" and a lot less "something". But how to make it through the longer months of the school year? Well, I guess Nancy Reagan said it best: Just say no. Perhaps I should give it a try.