This morning I was sitting in a comfortable chair, simultaneously looking over a beautiful mountainous landscape in Vermont and staring at 36 pressing, unanswered emails and another 15 that needed attention but weren’t as important. I took a heavy sigh before slogging through them…
And the power went out.
I’m visiting the heavenly, rural retreat that my dear friend refers to as her “Bit of Earth,” recovering from a few stressful days: ten 1-hour+ presentations or trainings in two days at three schools in Vermont, all at least an hour from one another, all on some of the hottest days these un-air-conditioned school buildings have seen this year.
Thankfully, my friend opened her Bit of Earth to me to relax for a day before I get back on the road and back to my busy life in Minneapolis.
Ironically, last night we had a long talk over delicious local salads and wine while tremendous thunderstorms raged outside about the need to step back from the hectic demands of our “plugged-in” society. We waxed poetic about the importance of simply taking our time in responding to emails and of unplugging regularly from the world.
Then, as if the conversation hadn’t even happened, I sat down this AM to fight my way through some very stressful emails.
But it’s as if these stunning mountains and the storms that poured over them last night said to me, “I’m sorry, Jamie. You speak well of what you need, but you don’t take your own advice. So we’ll help you.”
No more internet.
So I am simply writing this short reflection before I sit down in a hammock with a book, a few words that I hope will be a reminder to my readers to
Whether our lives are weighed down by the pressures of classes or job responsibilities
or whether our hearts are weighed by talk of wars across the globe or hurts here at home
or whether our minds are occupied by endless status updates, inbox *dings*, or voicemails,
it is so vitally important that we take some time, no matter how long or complex, to care for ourselves.
This is my self-care for today: