This I Believe

Ebony - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Entered on September 23, 2007

I believe in balance.

I once had a conversation with a group of girlfriends, and I stated that no woman can live without one hour of alone time per day. These wonderful women were a mixture of young and single self-declared feminists as well as deeply committed mothers and wives, but when I said this, everyone in the room became quiet and began to think about how that meant different things for each of us. Some of us thought that all things in life should be done alone while others think that nothing can be done on one’s own. The crux of the conversation came down to the need for balance.

I value my own time, my dreams and goals that have for myself. I am confident that I can do anything and everything pretty much on my own, but at the same time, I believe in and need family, community and sharing. And I don’t think these perspectives have to be in conflict in a woman’s world.

Some people think of the world ‘balance’ as sensible, mature, boring or stagnant. But, the mental and emotional muscle it takes to see-saw the scale is no small feat and should not be considered merely as doing the right thing, sleeping for exactly 8 hours, or drinking only one glass of wine with a well-balanced meal. It is restrained impulsivity; it is planned spontaneity; it is dancing all night and showing up at work on time the next morning. It is making a mistake and being strong enough not to do it again. It is asking for help. It is taking both one-way backroads as well as complex interstates. It is the desire to be a mother and a wife while creating new dreams and aspirations for myself.

Balance is my one hour alone.