Thursday, October 30, 2008

A Day Off

Yesterday, I took a day off. I didn't blog. Didn't work on the Bible study I need to be writing for the book I am working on. Didn't do any edits on the book I need to get back to my publisher. I didn't do a whole lot of housework. I didn't put extraordinary effort into homeschooling my kids. We did the bare minimum to make it count. I didn't make dinner either-- Curt did. He volunteered, which was a blessing. I just didn't have any energy. Truth time: I didn't even shower.

Instead I talked on the phone to my stepsister, my friend Lysa, my friend Paige, my friend Erica and my mom. I never talk on the phone, as there just isn't time for chitchat usually. But yesterday, I made time. It was nice to catch up with friends. When I wasn't talking on the phone, I indulged in a rare guilty pleasure and watched old tv edisodes on YouTube. (I am not going to say which ones because if there is a lot of interest, they might get pulled. I am not sure that it is completely legal for them to be on there. But yesterday, I was so glad they were!) I also read a piece of mindless fiction and flipped through a new magazine that came in the mail instead of the more serious book on writing that I am currently reading. It was very nice and felt... decadent.

Sometimes I think we need a day off. We need to give ourselves permission to do nothing-- or at least the bare minimum. I was out of steam, physically and mentally. I needed a day to recharge. I needed time to do mindless stuff that didn't take even more away from my depleted mental resources. I needed to lay around and rest because I was so tired. As a busy wife, mom, homemaker, and writer/speaker, I rarely do that. There just isn't time. But yesterday, I took the time. I was asleep by 9:30 last night.

The great thing is that this morning I woke up refreshed and ready for a new day. I wanted to work on my book edits. I wanted to pull out stuff for dinner. I wanted to write this blog post. I wanted to go get my husband from the car place because his car broke down and he needed mine. I was ready mentally to deal with that little blip on the radar when it happened, instead of being overwrought because of the inconvenience of not getting to go to CBS or the financial possibilities of a car in the shop.

I am glad I took a day off yesterday. I wouldn't want to laze around every day but from time to time it's a great feeling. Try it sometime-- and don't feel guilty about it either! People often ask me how I balance the responsibilities of raising six kids, being a wife and homemaker, homeschooling, and writing and speaking. Well, taking the occasional day off to do absolutely nothing is one way I do that! It's important to take that time, and it's really important to admit that we need that time. Maybe it's just me, but oh boy do I need it!
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Joy said...

Hi Mary Beth,

Thanks for your message today. I needed to read that! I've been reading your messages for a month or two, but this is the first time I've replied. I can only imagine how tired you become with all you have to manage. My life is much different from yours, as I only have one child. I take my child to school each morning, go straight to work (28hr/wk), and return to school to pick him up. Then it's home to complete homework assignments, household chores, etc. I don't get too much help at home with any household husband is an outside/farm type of quy. Like you, lately I've just felt like I'm running out of steam. Sometimes, I feel like I shouldn't be this way with only one child! You have've earned your rest! However, I believe I'm going to take your advice and schedule myself a day off and see if I can't become "refreshed". Thanks for giving me permission to do that, and thanks for sharing your thoughts and words of encouragement on your site.

Laurie Ann said...

So glad you enjoyed your downtime. I love days like that!

Amy Jo said...

Ah, good for you! I think it's days like the one you just had that keep us sane as wives, moms and homeschoolers! Isn't it amazing how refreshed you feel?

BTW - Thanks for the post about book reviews! I just signed up.

Sweet blessings,

Bonita said...

Oh dear, I hope you took the day off because you wanted to and needed it and not because I wore you slap out the night before!

Flamingo Mama said...

Thanks for this. When I have days like this I feel like a failure...I'm so glad to know that it may just be needed!

My biggest problem will telling myself I don't need it everyday!