I took some time off from work this afternoon. I rarely take days off, and the planned vacation days I'd allotted for myself in May went entirely up in smoke ..... well, not so much up in smoke as under the carriage of my vehicle. Don't even ask.
It doesn't take a genius to see from my posts across all my various blogs, FB posts, tweets, etc. to see that I have been pretty dang stressed lately. A lot of it is self-induced, to be sure. For most of my life, I've set a very high bar for myself and I get very put out when I fail to reach my own expectations for myself -- let along what others may expect of me. I don't give myself much slack. It is not good. There's something to be said for self-discipline and for expecting the best out of yourself. It's quite another to turn it into a relentless drive .... as I tend to do.
The last few days have been busy. Holy Week is always a busy one for people who are part of church ministry, and I choose to be part of it as much as possible because for me, they are the High Holy Days. I missed my first Good Friday services in 22 years due to car troubles (yeah, another fun element to the weekend). I came to a decision over the weekend to let go of something -- at least short-term -- that isn't really helping me in terms of my stress levels or anything else. Better to let it go for a while. I just have to work out a few more details before moving forward with it. And after all the stress (both good and bad) was over and done yesterday ---- hello, migraine, my old friend...... yes. Seriously.
So today, I took some time to rest. I truly did have a doctor's appointment for some labwork, but I really did need to rest more than anything else. So what did I do on my big afternoon off? After the doctor's appointment, I drove myself home and promptly fell asleep. For two hours. Maybe two and a half. I really didn't keep track of it. I slept so deeply that when I woke up I didn't know what day or time or anything that it was. It's now later at night, normally around the time I'd start preparing for sleep and you know something..... no problemo. Instead of feeling like I could stay up for another two hours, nope. I'm good.
I have struggled with sleep issues for years -- if you consider "pretty near all my life" as a good indication. What I've really struggled with is a circadian rhythm issue. Even in childhoood, I couldn't fall asleep until late and couldn't wake up until later. It's like my whole life, my sleep cycle has always been an hour or two behind what the real world says "work time" or "school time" should be. It's like I'm a Mountain Time girl stuck in Eastern. Forever. I cannot bounce up in the mornings, bright-eyed and ready to go..... I have to slowly, s-l-o-w-l-y slink my way into morning.... but I can fall asleep in about 3 breaths at night.
So, we've discussed rest ..... and how NONE of us (I don't care who you are) never get enough. WHY? What is it about busy-ness that is so attractive? I'm as guilty as the next person of being busy, busy, busy doing absolutely nothing of any real consequence. None of it will really matter a hundred years from now and that's pissing me off..... if I am going to be busy about something, by golly, it ought to be about something of grave importance. But even more importantly, WHY? Why am I choosing to entangle and engage myself in these things? Is it because our society believes that if we're not overbooked, over-engaged, over-wrought, over-stuffed, over-this.... then we're nobodies? What are we trying to hide with all this activity? Who are we trying to fool - especially ourselves? What are we avoiding? Are we that afraid of the silence of our lives? Why do we care if someone down the street thinks we're lacking because our little Johnny isn't involved in soccer AND piano AND jiu-jitsu AND .... like their little Freddie. Are we just that uncomfortable with our own imperfections, our own spaces between, that we cannot tolerate it for a moment and........ okay, so what can I add? What more can I do?
How about rest? How about just being?
Chica, heal thyself.