Often in the hustle and bustle of our daily lives, it is easy to forget how important it is to take a few quiet moments for yourself. Sometimes it is the circumstances of our lives that cause us to forget. At other times, we just don't make enough time for ourselves because we believe there is so much more we "have to do". Within the past few days of trying to carry on my "normal" life and deal with extraordinary problems, this simple truth has hit home with me as I struggle to fill myself up once again. I am convinced those times in our lives that feel slow--where we don't feel we are accomplishing anything--are truly important to our overall mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health. We need to remember this and learn to appreciate this "down time".
I went to work Monday on three hours of sleep after spending most of the night in the ER with my daughter. When I got home, I made dinner for the family and got some catch-up sleep (although a restless sleep). Tuesday I had to leave work early because I had to take my middle school son to the high school to sign up for his high school classes for next year. I quickly made dinner upon arriving home and drove to the hospital to see my daughter for visiting time. Wednesday, I went back to work and had to leave early again to go back to the hospital for a family counseling session. Fortunately, my daughter responded well to treatment and I was able to bring her home after the session (no more hospital visits this week!). I have a few visits scheduled for her within the next couple of weeks, but today I do have some quiet time which I plan to take full advantage of.
My plan is to spend a little time meditating, listening to music and trying to get in touch with God in me. I will probably listen to one of my favorite internet gurus, Jennifer McLean, on her MasterWorks Healing website (www.masterworkshealing.com/members). This has helped me through some of my worst depression in the past. I may do a little reading (one of my favorite pasttimes). I have found these things work for me. I appreciate the fact they are accessible and enable my body, mind and heart to heal.
The important thing is, I know how critical it is for me to take this time for myself. It is not time I spend being lazy but time I deserve to replenish my soul. We all need (and deserve) this. Don't make the mistake of regretting this down time because you should be doing something more constructive and productive. Filling yourself up after the stresses of your life is a necessary and useful part of your development. Enjoy and relish those moments. It won't be long before you find yourself re-emerging into your own busy world with the strength to get through all the challenges life throws your way.