For the first time in a long time I took a vacation. I planned for it to be a staycation, but that’s not exactly what happened. Life, as it usually does, got in the way. Or maybe, I got in the way.
To be honest, the hardest thing I have ever had to do is rest. I spend so much of my time doing and going that I forget to stop. Rise at 5:30 am make the hour commute to work just to reverse it, go to class and be in the bed and asleep by 12:45 am. Maybe on the weekend I get an extra hour or two of sleep. Constantly moving. I go from mommy mode, to work mode, to honey mode and sometimes I mix them all together. I struggle with the word No. Not so much in mommy mode, but in everything else in life.
If someone needs something at work, no matter how overwhelmed I am, I always say yes. My Love needs something done at the house. I got you. The PTA is selling books and needs someone to man the booth. Even though I don’t understand why the one year old class is a part of the PTA, sure thing. I try to think, if I needed something wouldn’t I want someone to be there for me? Truthfully, looking back. I think one of my issues is my definition between want and need. A new personal goal, to establish people’s wants from me versus people’s needs from me.
Well, I was burning the wick at both ends. So I took a vacation. I took a week off from work and a week off from school. It went nothing like a planned. I made a plan to do nothing and it went nothing like I planned it. It became a week of a sick child, laundry, planning events, driving 4 hours to check on my grandmother, a friend having a “crisis” over a dress, my parents finding out I’m on vacation trying to plan things for me, and My Love wanting to throw a small shindig.
I think in the end I had 1 day to myself and just 2 hours actually doing nothing. This past week, I learned that relaxation is an art and skill. It takes practice. Most importantly, I learned it’s not what you would initially think it is.
This is what I learned:
- Tune in to yourself. Listen to you body. Your body will never steer you wrong. When it says to sit or sleep, you should. You’ll feel better.
- Tune out the static noise. It’s hard, almost impossible, to relax with a constant stimulus. Turn the TV off, the phone off, stay offline. Distraction is a helpful tool to take your mind off of the world, but you must not use the world as your distraction. I think we can all agree, news of good deeds are not as prominent as the worries of the world.
- Go outside. You would be surprised at what a little sun and a few trees can do.
- Prioritize. It’s okay if some things don’t get done. Stressing about them will not make it any better or help it get done faster.
- Have fun. Do something that gives you nothing but joy. For me, it’s a candle lit bubble bath with a good book and a glass of wine. If I’m feeling saucy, I like to go dancing with friends.
- Be social. Relaxing does not mean solitary confinement. It is very important to take time just to yourself, but it’s just as important to spend time with the people that bring joy in your life.
- No is a beautiful word. Sometimes it is perfectly acceptable to say no. In fact, it’s healthy.
My vacation was nothing that I planned, but it was everything that I needed.