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… is the most overrated phrase I’ve ever heard.

It’s been close to eight months that I started staying at home and believe me, I get about an hour and a half of free time on an average everyday. Free time as in me time. Needless to say, I love that time. I use that time to browse. To catch up on the News. To read. To do my share of Surya Namaskar. To just aimlessly loiter around the house and dust places. Or, just plain sit down and think about nothing. I have no qualms in accepting that I have free time despite the kids.

Every time, I meet someone new to me, they tell me/ask me about how busy I should be with two kids running up and about in the house. ‘It must be tough for you to get some free time, what with two kids driving you against the wall all the time!’ ‘Now that you’ve quit, your kids will still be keeping you busy, no?’ And, every time this question is asked, I make sure I surprise/shock these questioners with an on-the-face, ‘Not really. I do get my share of free time!’ I so love to look at their reactions from there on.

Why exactly do people want to be perennially busy is something I really can’t understand. Where in this manual called ‘life’ has it been mandated that we should be busy always? With the growth of technology, our levels to stand our own selves is going down big time. We wake up to the phone and sleep with the phone. I can feel it myself when a minute of waiting for the kids outside looks like an hour without the phone to fidget with. Why am I not able to spend time with myself is a question I keep asking myself. Am I such a difficult person, after all?

I am guilty of saying so many times how much it takes to keep the kids occupied all the time. But you know, honestly, if we don’t keep them occupied, boredom will teach them to get creative. This, I’ve learnt the hard way. Earlier, when the kids used to complain of boredom and all our playing/reading options were exhausted, I used to switch on the TV or the computer. Which meant, they couldn’t capitalize on their boredom. Now, I’ve realized that is the most brutal way of killing the creativity in them. So, now when the kids say they are bored, I just ignore them. After about five minutes of tantrumming and five more minutes of whining, they figure out what to do; all by themselves. They get some roti maav from me and make shapes/mini idlis or whatever. They sit down and watch a spider move from place to place. They take their books and begin mock reading on their own. They arrange and rearrange their toys in different forms and have fun.Β Boredom nalladhu!

May be, a constantly idle mind can become a devil’s workshop in due course. But, in my opinion a constantly busy mind can become the reservoir of stress too.

Now tell me, isn’t a little bit of boredom and idleness good? What makes us boast about our busyness all the time?