The balance of balance

"Balance" is talked about as if it were a high virtue. Whether it is or it isn't, the degree of balance in a person's life can't be measured under the lens of a single day. If it could, the degree of balance in my life over the course of the last three days would be so small as to be immeasurable. My desk has been my home as I try to meet several consecutive work deadlines. These kinds of days are good in the sense that they bring income into the checking account so that it can go out again to buy groceries. But they are also frustrating in that most every moment is a work moment, which means there isn't room for wondering thoughts or a fun outing or creative pursuits. Hence, no blog entries for several days. It's because of days like this that convince me balance isn't about what happens in the course of a day or several days, it's about what happens over a longer course of time--weeks or a season or year or lifetime. In a work-dedicated state as now, I make little notes on white cards about other ideas and lay them aside for later; set books unrelated to my current work project on the floor next to my desk; watch the growing pile of laundry and know I'll deal with it soon; make a plan to see a friend over the weekend; think of meals to cook when my son comes home for Thanksgiving. These notes and books and plans, even the growing pile of laundry, are like ballast to hold my life in balance, even when at this particular moment it feels anything but balanced.