Sunday, April 10, 2011

Casual Sundays

Anyone who knows me very well knows that I am normally loathe to make plans on a Sunday.  Sunday is my shut down, re-center, recharge day.   When I’m feeling contemplative, I call it Sabbath.  But mostly, I just call it like it is.  Pajama Day. 

 There are two key elements to Pajama Day.  No, make that three.

      No bra required.
      Sleeping in, not setting the alarm.
      Nothing planned, don’t have to be anyplace, 
            don’t have to do anything for anybody!

Having said that, yes, I may do laundry, and I definitely have to take out the trash and recycling (a task for which I wait for night to fall, then throw a coat over my PJs and skulk out under cover of darkness).  And there’s usually at least one article that needs to be written.

But I had this epiphany that the pajama (or, in summer, night shirt) aspect of Pajama Day isn’t just about being comfortable.

It’s also about not having to make any choices, even about something as simple as what to wear. (Contrary to common belief about people who work from home offices, I do get dressed in clothes every work day.) We have to use judgment when we get dressed, based on myriad criteria we don’t even realize we’re using. What’s the temperature outside? What’s the temperature inside? Which of my clothes are clean? Which are a little dirty but no one has to know? Which clothes do I have to save to be clean for an event later in the week?  Can I handle a tight waistline today or not?  

My life has become so paralyzed by choices I can’t make just one more. There is no discernment involved in reaching into my drawer—or onto the floor by my bed—for PJs.  Done, and done.

All week all I do is multitask, and make choices, and filter information coming at me from 60 directions. I juggle service to my clients and my employers.  I interact with my family and friends (hopefully in a loving and compassionate way); I help those around me who need help.  I decide not just about things that are a chore but things that are fun. What am I doing on Saturday? Are I going to eat out before that event or not? If so, where should we go? Where will we park? What time do we need to leave by to get where we’re going in time?  Can I afford it? Will they have something I can eat that’s both healthy and delicious?  (Relative weight given to each depending on what day you ask me.)  I triage problems from work on my car or house to scheduling doctor’s appointments.  At the grocery store I literally become dazed by all the choices around me, brands, packaging, health benefits real or perceived, label-reading, what things will I put together to make each meal, how long will these veggies last? Ay yay yay, day in and day out, my head is spinning!

But Sunday? Sunday?  No.  I refuse.  I figure if I pull my boundaries in tight around me, in this case the walls and windows of my living room, there will be less pulling at my attention, fewer choices to make. Maybe I can keep my wits about me. 

Of course, Washington D.C.’s notoriously mercurial spring is putting a bit of a glitch in my no-choices-on-Sunday resolve.  I came downstairs today having shifted to my “shoulder season” pajamas in a lighter fabric, having moved from winter flannels but not ready for a short cotton nightshirt.  One toe out the door to get the Post on my front walk, and I knew the TV meteorologists had lied; it was not that warm out.  I tromped back upstairs to grab my flannel PJs.  And  I chose--to take them out for one more spin.