I could probably write a better blog if I sat down and planned this out instead of going of the cuff, but I’m going to roll with what’s coming out. So please bear with me, reader.
I wrote a few weeks ago that I’m getting jaded on the idea of birthdays and having your own special, magical day. Now I’m almost getting jaded on the idea of resting and taking a day off. Now, I’d love to get into the dynamics of it and discuss it more in depth, and there is Sabbath rest to be had, but what I mean in general is this: it can be really difficult to take a day and truly rest. By rest I mean stop stressing and stop worrying (which sounds more like a state of being more than anything else, but that’s another discussion to be had) and to get away from your normal routine. But that almost seems impossible because:
-if I have to go somewhere like to another city, it involves driving which, personally, is something that is gradually more and more tiresome, and not restful (and can I just say that the worst part of a vacation is the return leg? ugh.)
-if I have to (or choose to) spend money to do something fun, then I am at risk of financial stress, which is worry, and it could become less restful.
-if I stay home for a day, I’ve got to be sure to do something out of the routine. This is why video games are ruined for me, by the way. I have this awful habit of playing video games every waking second that I’m not at work (that’s an overstatement, fortunately) and so when I wake up on my day off and play video games, it’s not restful because it’s still a lot like my work days! But I think this is why I find cleaning so relaxing – it’s not something I do every day (I’m a dude, and I’m human) and the satisfaction in getting something clean is unmatched.
Do you get what I mean? It can be really difficult to truly get a break from things. But I think that’s also just something to come to terms with as an adult – life may not slow down every time you want it to. That’s part of why I don’t believe in “me time” – I think we need to unwind sometimes, and I think that it’s good to rest (!) but at least for me, it doesn’t seem right (hypothetically, although this has happened, too) to block off a night for myself and then when someone asks me if I can help them during that block of time, to tell them no, that I’m having “me time.” Just doesn’t sit well with me.
(Quick aside: I’m all for families taking time to be together, and deliberately making themselves unavailable to others. That’s different – that’s an issue of investing in your family, and that’s a good thing. But I tend to think that people with no other obligations shouldn’t reserve themselves for their own sakes. call me sadistic, whatever.)
I also don’t think that if nobody needs you and nothing’s going on, it has to be work-work-work all the time. It doesn’t, but I think part of me opinion is informed by the fact that I spend a lot of my free time doing silly things (like previously mentioned video games.) I don’t have a lot of sacred habits that I need to free up time for, or make a priority. But I think that should also be done, at least in part, on the terms of your schedule. That is, don’t schedule around your “me time,” schedule your recharging time around what you have going on.
Before I ramble all day, I need to wrap this up – I called this blog “pace” before I even started writing it, and that’s because I’m just finding that life takes on a certain pace. Sometimes we have to adjust to that pace. It’s funny because, for some (say, a stay-at-home mom,) certain things are exhausting and others are relaxing. I’m thinking about driving. I’m sure a mom who stays cooped up would relish the chance to get out, while when it’s my day off, the last thing I want to do is drive. Isn’t it funny?
Lord, help me adjust to the pace of life. I know You desire us to rest our spirits in You, as well as our souls and bodies. Help me learn the balance between being available to help who You would have me help but also to take care of myself with vigorous rest.