My spring break wasn’t really a vacation—my son had already had his school break and we didn’t go anywhere, but I recognized that I needed a break from blogging and took one. I didn’t try to fill the days—in fact, I tried to empty them! But life, as usual, got in the way. While I was “taking a break,” Scout had some problems and had to go to the vet (she’s feeling better now) and we helped my son complete a community service project which involved making 1000 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to be distributed to the hungry and homeless. This is what 1000 sandwiches looks like:
I did manage to do a little extra reading (Mr. Skeffington, The Olive Grove), ride Tank several times and make a new vision board (better late than never). And—ta da—I finished painting my sketches from
The original sketch:
Have you noticed that when you cut back on doing one thing, something else leaps forward to take its place? The time I spend writing posts and visiting other people’s blogs was easily consumed by other tasks, and by the end of the week, I didn’t really feel like I’d had a break. I extended the break into the first part of this week, and what do you know? I spent hours on Monday doing errands. Clearly, I need to work on the concept of taking a break.
This non-break taught me something about myself that I already sort of knew: I feel guilty if I’m not constantly working to contribute in some way. Since I don’t have a paying job, I drive myself to work for the family nearly constantly. I have a terribly hard time allowing myself the time I need for study, thought and yes, doing nothing, in service of feeding my creativity and my ultimate writing goals which I am ashamed to say have almost completely fallen into obscurity. I feel bad about this, and instead of rerouting my energies to fix it, I go for the more obvious (and endless) to-do list where I can mark off things achieved and actually see a result—a bathroom cleaned, groceries in the fridge, etc. I’m having a hard time letting go of tangible results for intangible ones.