March 30, 2014


Sunday has never been my favorite day of the week. It's always seemed like a fake weekend day, one filled with homework and chores and early bedtime and looming deadlines and the stress of the week ahead. My usual Sunday sentiment is harried and slightly melancholy: Another weekend is coming to a close, and I'm surprised at how quickly it flew by.

While I often spend Sunday mornings at church, I've never followed the biblical practice of treating Sunday as a day of rest. Surely, people in biblical times didn't have to deal with grocery shopping, kids' homework, laundry, cleaning, paying bills, and getting caught up on work email.

With all due respect to the Bangles, I can't understand why they declared Sunday as "fun day" - except for the obvious rhyme. I've had merry Sundays, galavanting about town, blowing off chores. When my alarm clock goes off at 4:30 Monday morning, I'm exhausted, I have a carb hangover, and I have no idea what I'm going to eat, wear, or do this week - "Manic" isn't the first word that comes to mind.

No, Sunday is not my fun day. But I am trying to love it nonetheless.

Instead of thinking of Sunday as the last day of my weekend, I am reframing it as the first day of my week.

Sunday is a fresh start. It's like New Year's Day, 52 times a year.

On Sunday, I wake up well-rested and I don't have to go to the office. I have the energy and time to be the sort of grown-up I aspire to be. I can be someone who plans healthy meals, goes to the gym, knows exactly where the kids are scheduled to be after school each day, and doesn't live in squalor.

On Sunday, I can fill up my tank for the week with whatever resource I know will be scarce in the coming days: Quiet time, family time, physical activity, sunshine. I can also, literally, fill up my car's gas tank or go get it washed. Such tasks seem impossible when it's Wednesday, I just got off the bus, I have to rush to daycare and school to pick up the kids, I need to figure out what the heck is for dinner, unfinished work projects are rattling in my brain, and I've had to go to the bathroom since 2:30 but I have been WAY too busy for such leisurely pursuits.

Our family has started developing Sunday habits: After church, Sam tackles Mt. Laundry, I buy the week's groceries, we cook an obscene amount of bacon, and we might roast some vegetables or prepare salads for the days to come. We exercise, like the responsible people we aspire to be. Sam might iron his work shirts while watching football, noting how he is turning into his father.

Today, we returned from church to a sunny spring afternoon, the first 60-degree day of the year. I took my bike for the inaugural ride of the season. I clipped coupons and bought healthy food and made low-carb lemon chicken in the crockpot. I sat outside and watched the kids play soccer in the driveway.

I didn't accomplish every to-do on my list, but I'm on track for my last important one: Get to bed before 9:30.

I'm getting older, and it shows. But I'm OK with that. Friday is only 5 days away.

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