The last two weeks, I spent almost every night either in rehearsal or performance for a community play. It was a Christmas play, albeit a nontraditional one with zombies and salty language. I haven't done any theatre at all since high school, so it was both scary and delightful to get my feet wet again. Doing the first reading in front of the other performers was about 1,000 times scarier than doing the first real performance. Audiences are much less frightening than peers, in my opinion. In fact, that's why theatre is so addictive. There's something sublime about making people laugh, or applaud, or cry.
Now was not a practical time to involve myself in a play. We are poor, and I lost wages because a lot of my shifts conflicted with rehearsal times. I am struggling to keep my head above water, to get things done, to be organized when my default is total disorganization on a massive scale. Our laundry pile is embarrassing, especially considering that we don't have children. Our dishwasher has been coming out of the wall since we moved in, and our apartment complex has yet to respond to my latest plea for help. Meanwhile, my car keeps breaking down, as it has ever since we sent it to the no-good mechanics in August, and I have yet to get my tag replaced. And, you know, Christmas.
It was the best decision I could have made.
If you wait until you have a perfect routine to add something fun, you never will. Human nature doesn't work that way, or at least mine doesn't. Perhaps there are people, real ones and not just robots, that can do all of the things you're supposed to do, can refrain from wasting a single penny on nonessentials, can only eat healthy foods, never pick up fast food when they're tired, always have a clean house, never waste a minute at work, always feel ready to have strangers inspect their closets and kitchen cabinets and basements without a sliver of embarrassment, never get behind on laundry or dishes, and wait until all these things are true before even thinking about "wasting time."
Instead I acted recklessly, volunteered to participate and tried out for a major role, landed it (primarily because they really needed someone, anyone), and found myself in nightly rehearsals, saying lines to myself in the car on my way to work. It's been the first time in awhile that I was doing something that required something of me (i.e. isn't just mindlessly surfing the internet) but was inessential, impractical, and fun. It did not give me exercise (other than simply "being active"), or help my nutrition, or put money in my pocket, or increase my sleep.
What it did do was get me out of the apartment and around people, which in turn helped my depression and anxiety, which in turn helped the rest of my life. I had to keep a commitment, which is something I struggle with, without financial pressure but with peer pressure, i.e., I didn't want to lose face. I missed one rehearsal because of a panic attack, but this is a good record for me.
So go ahead. Stay in the car so you can sing with the radio, even if you really need to get inside and get busy. Say yes to something that seems crazy if there's an inexplicable sense of peace about it.