One of the first things I ask prospective Dedicants, as they are being interviewed by the coven is this: "We all lead incredibly busy lives. The Craft will demand time from you - what are you going to give up in your life right now to make room for it?"
Nydia is right, also - make your daily needs into your rituals, and you're halfway there. But there's also nothing wrong with establishing boundaries, like asking people not to call you from 6pm - 7pm, or letting them know that if they do, you won't be able to get back to them til afterwards, so they know to expect it. If they ask, and you decide it's any of their business, tell them it's your "you time" - that you're taking up meditation, prayer, yoga, journaling or anything else that folks will not look askance at.
Sometimes, there is no room in our lives. But sometimes, we have to =make= room for the things that are important. If the things that you seem to be saying you want to spend time doing are important, find a way. I don't mean that in a critical way, but sometimes we forget that we have far more control over our lives than we admit. We give that control away to everyone else around us.
Do you drink tea or coffee? When I was a student I 'discovered' my Pagan self as you have as well (terrible timing, no?)
I practically lived off coffee for my Uni and post-grad years. Every morning I'd get up, grind the beans, wait for the water to boil and watch the birds. It was quiet, it was solitary, and to me, it was ritual (and still is). I found it easier to drown out the goings on around me; even in a busy house. The familiar ritual was calming and helped me focus. I talk to the God and Goddess over coffee. I talk to Frigga over Chopin on the subway. Every time I smell coffee, even for a second, it reminds me to reconnect. To talk to the Gods, thank them, and tune into my surroundings in a deeper way. I suppose the smell of roasted beans and water has become a sort of trigger - a reminder.
Oak makes a good point - you must make time in your life for the things that matter. Join a yoga class, go for hikes, do something that helps you to reconnect and reminds you to slow down and experience. Taking time to nurture your craft and your spirit is difficult, but necessary to happiness. :)
My craft is so part of my life, that its just a natural part of my day...I find the evening good for reading personally, but it varies.The main thing is to get the most out of your practice
That makes me remember a line from the charge of the Goddess"all acts of love and pleasure are my rituals
Bath time can be a good time to pray and do magic. No one will suspect if you take a few candles and a stick of incense into the bathroom with you , draw yourself a bath(maybe with the appropriate herbs in it).Good time to pray , mediatate or even do magic.
Liten to pagan music as you drink your morning coffee. If possible , eat your lunch outside and share with the birds." Be creative .
I had advised a friend who was having trouble juggling life, spiritualism, and family that sometimes its easiest to just let it all flow. Maybe instead of a full fledged ritual you may just have time for building a relationship with you patron God/dess by simply prayer/meditation.
I currently and going through Traditional training, and i'm a full time mom, and provider, I work 48 hours a week, plus juggle kids and the spiritual, the point here is when i feel caught up, I hop in the shower, or bubble bath, and just talk to My Goddess. I tell her everything that is on my mind. How I feel, what i'm struggling with. When I come out, I feel like a load has been taken off of my chest and the things that were bothering me although are still there, seeing as our problems don't just magically disappear, it does make it easier to cope. Eventually, after building a strong relationship with your God/dess, s/he may even be willing to give you advice, or at least the comfort to know that they know you are doing the best you absolutely can. The Gods love us and as long as we honor them and devote our lives to the ways of wisdom.
As far as answering the calls when your mom gets to you, I would suggest putting the phone on silent instead of vibrate, and if she asks why you didn't answer, say you were in the bathroom, or turn it off all together and say it died. I realize you may not want to lie/fib about it, but if you seriously want no interruptions and you don't want to tell them what you are doing (which is fine a lot of people are in the broom-closet about their faith) then you are either always going to feel as though you are juggling, or you are going to have to avoid the truth. What you tell them is your own personal choice. I personally am out of the broom-closet with everyone "except" my 82 year old Grandmother, and I don't talk religion with her at all, I know its something she is against and I figure what she doesn't know doesn't hurt her.
I would also suggest as far as feeling bad about missing Sabbat, and you really want to you can as i said before just pray/meditate, and be sure to add your thanks to the God/dess for their gifts during this time.
Also, a favorite de-stressing ritual i do regularly is called, the waterfall stress relief spell. Its more of an exercise, than a spell but anyways, when you hop in the shower at night or in the morning, visualize the water that is flowing down on you not to be coming out of the faucet but from a cool crisp wonderful waterfall, and as the water hits the top of your head it washes away all the stress, and the excess negative energy you may have accumulated from the people you made contact with during the day. I know with me i work with the general public so when i get home my aura feels like it is muddy and has absorbed all kinds of excess garbage energy from the people i have worked with or served.
Sara wrote: "When do I have time to be Pagan?"
All the time. Practicing a particular pagan path is not what makes you pagan. Being pagan is pretty much just being. It's what you are, not what you do. The practices you engage in may provide a name for your particular path (Eclectic, Faerie, Gardnerian, or whatever) but being pagan is just something that you are, like being human or being a woman.
More to your point, well, I'm not in school anymore, but I am a husband and father who works full time, plays in a band part time, and is the High Priest of a Gardnerian Coven that includes an Outer Court or Training Coven. Most of the time I simply squeeze in whatever I can whenever I can, even if it is just being mindful of the Gods and the world around me. I also have to make time occasionally to do mundane tasks associated with the Coven, preparing ritual materials, etc. But the bulk of my practice, worship, Sabbats & Esbats and training new witches, takes place during our Circles, twice a month. These nights are set aside for this specifically, and nothing short of an emergency is allowed to interfere. Mobile phones are turned off, doors are locked and clocks are covered.
I'm sure if you look hard enough and take proper steps you'll be able to make time for what you really want.
Jet's comment reminded me of the thread, and something that wasn't really addressed in the OP's comments - the expectation of immediate response.
One way to make space is to train the people in your life that you'll sometimes want/need some downtime. (And there's really good ongoing research that suggests this is a good habit to get into, too.) The best way is to let people know up front (so they don't panic, and they don't feel offended), and then just gently take the time you need.
So something like "Mom, it's great to touch base after school, but I'd really like to start taking some quiet time to go for a walk/journal/make art/whatever strikes my fancy. Could we work it out so that on the days I want that time I let you know (so you don't worry), but you don't expect to hear back from me for an hour or two?"
Speaking of Frigga, EmJ, since I view her as a goddess of order, I usually dedicate my house-cleaning to her, and take fifteen or twenty minutes to meditate on her afterward. It's something that has to be done, but I feel it's also a way of communing with her, and I find when I have dedicated my cleaning to her I do a much better and more thorough job of it.
I am also a busy college student, but I find that taking time for prayer and meditation makes me more productive in the long run, because it reduces my stress level and thereby prevents me from breaking down and being completely useless. The issue with your mother is definitely a problem, but Jenett's suggestion sounds very wise.
How many times a day do you stop and wish you could take part in ritual?
How many times have you wished for more time, to complete a circle/spell/pray without an interruption?
How often have you driven by something, and thought what a beautiful sight to behold?
What if you were to realize the amount of time you have done each of these things, you could have been utilizing the time to practice your faith in the real world? Your livestyle, whether it be solitary or coven based, will always have a multitude of events, occuring all at the same time. This, is real life...
As it was once pointed out to me (more times than I care to recall), take five and breath.
Instead of wishing for what you could have, do something about it!
Yes, with a busy schedule, it is not easy to accomplish a large or elaborate ritual, especially if you are also trying to keep this information within. Yet, there is no reason why instead of wishing, you couldn't do the ritual within yourself, With strong focus, it is possible to enact a ritual within oneself(bath /shower time is a wonder)....It is possible to do a beautiful circle all within your mind(Waking up early in the morn, before the day begins and your feet hit the floor) start your day off with a circle within.. It is possible to speak to the Lady and Lord with ease and comfort, all from within. As you drive by that beautiful sight, thank the Lady and the Lord for showing you nature's beauty.
If your life is driven by the Lady and the Lord, you will be amazed at how quickly you discover, that time becomes irrelevant.
For very special occassions, it is simplier to say, "I have plans mom, I won't be able to chat with you this coming "Saturday" eve." Never feel you have to be less than truthful. For this in the end, if discovered, would damage a relatiohship that is obviously very important to you.
Your mind is a wonderful gift.... Use it to serve the Lady and the Lord.....Blessed Be Hun MJ )O(