I have a long list of “must dos”. A longer list of things I need to do. And a short list of things I really want to do. We all have these lists, whether on paper or in our heads.

The long lists take up most of my time. They include the everyday things like be a wife, be a mom to 3 teenagers, and be an accountant at work.  It means at home I do laundry, help with homework, cook dinner, and wash dishes.  At work I figure contracts, reconcile GL accounts and analyze financial statements. That’s already a lot to do.

The other items on the long lists are those that can wait but still need doing.  Like painting behind the toilets because we installed new ones that are shaped differently and now a patch of the old paint shows. We need to paint the garage and organize our closets. We need to fix the backdoor.  I need to have my oil changed and the tires rotated.

But what about that short list?

Running a 5K is on my short list. I want to fly somewhere with each of my kids and hike in the Bankhead National Forest at least 10 times this year. My husband and I want to see the Northern Lights. I want to learn sign language and Spanish and do some ballroom dancing. These things don’t need to be done and as one of my favorite authors, Mark Buchanan, put it, the world isn’t changed by my doing them or not.  

But I need to play. You need to play. Because we need a break from the ever growing “to do” list.  

Because of the chores and responsibilities and deadlines the short list tends to get shoved under the others. Disregarded as less important. Forgotten about.  

If we’re not careful, adulthood can turn into one big obligation and we forget we need to have fun. We forget how to play. 

If you’ve neglected play for so long and don’t know what to do, start small. Play Go Fish with your kid. Dance in the living room. Fly a kite or jump on the trampoline. Take that cooking class, join a book club, or visit Six Flags again just to ride the roller coaster.

I’m not going to tell you how you’ll benefit from playing.  Or if you will at all.

I want you to find out for yourself.  And then let me know.

How did you play and did something good come from it?

Excuse me while I do some cartwheels in the front yard with my daughter and the dog.

In response to the Daily Post’s daily prompt Nothin’ But A Good Time.